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5 Hacks To Optimize Your Promotional Product Marketing

Knowing how to optimize your investment in promotional products can maximize the returns you generate from them. While the returns you generate may be tangible, or intangible, the important point here is to set your promotional product strategy up for success.

A Promotional Products Association International (PPAI) study asked respondents to recall the specific product, advertiser, and message of a promotional item they had received in the past 2 years. 76.2% could recall all 3 key pieces of information. This is a fantastic ROI just on it’s own! However, there’s more you can do.

In this post, we’ll cover 5 marketing hacks that optimize your investment in promotional product marketing, giving you specific tips and insights on deriving the maximum value possible.

Let’s get right into it!

Hack 1: Know What You’re Going To Measure To Estimate ROI, & How You’ll Do It

As part of the planning phase of investing in promotional product marketing, you need to anticipate how you’re going to measure the return on your investment. There are a bunch of ways marketers use to do this, and here are a few:

  • Standard ROI Calculation: The formula for this is (Gross Profit/Sales Revenue Generated – Investment in Promotional Items)/Investment In Promotional Items. This gives you the ROI in percentage terms.
  • Number Of Impressions: This is the number of times your prospects catch the sight of your promotional products.
  • Call To Action: You can use your promotional products to stimulate prospects to take action, like call your phone number, or visit your website. Then it’s possible to track the number of ‘leads’ you’re generating from your investment in promotional products.
  • Customer Lifetime Value: This measures the total value you generate from each customer over their entire ‘lifespan’ of being a customer. It can be quite accurate, especially since promotional products generate returns over the long term.

Once you choose one of the metrics above, it becomes a lot easier to track your investment and calculate accurately what your ROI is, and how you can optimize it.

Hack 2: Choose The Right Promotional Product

A key to maximising returns from each promotional product you give away is by choosing the right ones to give to your customers.

If you’re a manufacturer of computers like Apple, then giving promotional products like USB’s, laptop cases, or a mouse, screen protectors and laptop sleeves is a sensible idea. But let’s say you’re a gym, and you’re giving away cheese & bread boards as your promotional items, that may not be a great idea as eating cheese may not gel well with the concept of fitness. Your audience may lose faith in your seriousness about helping them become fit.

The benefit from giving away relevant promotional products is the positive impression you leave on your customers minds. They see you as a brand that cares for them and respects their needs. And that can make all the difference. It’s these smaller, unspoken elements of your promotional product strategy that can make or break the success of your campaign.

Hack 3: A/B Test Your Promotional Product Campaigns

Another great way to optimize your returns is to A/B test your promotional product campaigns. For instance, you may be giving promotional gifts at a conference, and another set of promotional gifts at a shopping centre. You could have different phone numbers/calls to action on the promotional items you give at the 2 different locations. This way you can track the success of each set of promotional items, and know which one is more effective.

Through A/B testing your campaigns, you will become smarter in optimizing your returns from promotional products in the future. You will know what works, what does not work, and build on what works and eliminate what doesn’t. This is similar to A/B testing digital ads online, except you’ll do it with promotional products.

board with test title

(Image Source)

So depending on how you’re measuring the success of your promotional products, you can design experiments to test, iterate and fine tune the results you get!

Hack 4: Speak To Your Promotional Products Supplier

One of the most effective ways to optimize your returns from promotional products is to speak to your suppliers! We’ve worked with numerous clients, and by virtue of our experience, we understand what may or may not work to generate the best possible returns.

Asking them questions like:

  • Have you worked with clients in the same industry?
  • What was their return on promotional product marketing?
  • Do you have any ideas on optimizing the returns we can generate from promotional products?
  • What’s the best price you can offer on bulk orders?
  • Are we able to negotiate the contract terms for a longer term relationship?

Through minimizing the cost you incur in acquiring your promotional products, and negotiating favourable terms both for yourself and your supplier to build a long term relationship, you can create the right foundation for marketing success.

Hack 5: Increase The Durability & Variety Of Your Promotional Products

On average, your customers keep your promotional products with them for a period of 8 months. This means that if you can improve the quality of your promotional products, your customers are likely to retain them for longer.

branded product marketing

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If your customers retain your promotional products for longer, the chances of them creating a lasting impression on their minds is higher, over a period of time. They’ll remember your brand more often, by having you at the front of their minds. For this reason, never hesitate to invest in better quality promotional products. You’ll only end up buying more time over which your customers will have sight of your brand!

Another tactic is to increase the variety of your promotional products. By having different varieties of products in the hands of your customers, you’ll increase the utility your customers derive from your promotional products, thereby increasing your brand impact.

So if you’re a fast food restaurant, giving away a combination of water bottles, bottle cap openers, lunch boxes, picnic baskets, t shirts and other relevant promotional products can enhance the customer experience and optimize your returns from them as a result.

Wrapping it up

Optimize your returns promotional products by following some of the hacks above. Think of some of your own hacks too, depending on your industry, and the type of returns you’re seeking, there’s always room for experimentation and innovation when it comes to generating the highest possible returns. We’re always here to help should you need any specific advise.


NOTE: Want your own promotional products to wow your customers and turn prospects in to life long, paying customers? Good Things can help.