Choosing the perfect promotional product: Perception is everything!

August 14th, 2013 by Linda No comments »

Choosing the right promotional product for your budgetPerception IS everything. When next you face the challenge of choosing a promotional product, keep this advertising specialty statistic in mind.

“Owners of promotional products remember the company they came from 87% of the time.”

Low cost might be attractive but it has its drawbacks. Poor quality items might meet your budgetary goals but fall far short in the promotion of your brand or company. With a rate of 87% recall, a cheap or poorly constructed item can have a negative impact that perpetuates itself forward.

Conversely, a promotional product of quality and good manufacture (albeit small) can say a lot about continuing engagement with your brand. Think of it like page ranking. The higher quality the link, the better the link. Well manufactured ad specialties speak well of your brand far into the future.

Choosing the perfect promotional product: Make it useful!

June 18th, 2013 by Linda 1 comment »

Here’s a challenge.  Look on your desk and open your drawers. Count how many promotional products you see. Pick each one up. Can you recall the company you received them from? How many of these advertising specialties do you use on a regular basis. Surprised?

According to recent studies, 87% of recipients can recall the advertiser they received a promo product from. That is up 4% from a previous promotional products study conducted in 2010 I blogged about last year. The same study reported that the average amount of time a promotional item is kept is around 5.4 months and is used a little over 18 times a month. So much for the “trinkets and trash” moniker that has plagued ad specialties for years.

Choosing a useful promotional product can extend the amount of time spent with the recipient, increasing awareness. If use equates to value – providing a consistent value can be a great reflection on your company or the brand you represent.

 

Choosing the perfect promotional product: Who is the recipient?

May 29th, 2013 by Linda 2 comments »

Knowing your audience and what makes them tick is central to choosing a successful promotional solution. Demographics and psycho-graphics are key to choosing a promotional product that will resonate with your target market.

Creating a persona that describes the individual or group you are trying to reach is a great way of tapping into what kind of advertising specialty product will be memorable. Asking yourself a few simple questions can make the difference between a “thanks but its heading to the junk drawer” and a promotional solution that the recipient uses on a regular basis. Some things to consider when choosing a promotional product:

  • Male, female, or unisex? This might seem simple, but if you choose a promotional product like a tee shirt, you might want to consider what size and cut will work best.
  • Age will give you insight on what popular trends or pop culture references your audience will recognize. The coolest promotional product on earth makes no difference if the recipient doesn’t see its relevance. Speak to them in a language they will understand.
  • What do they do? What are their habits, hobbies, and preferences? Knowing what your target market likes to do can point you in a direction you might not have considered before.

Developing personas is a great way of bringing creativity into your promotional product decision making process.

 

 

The changing shape of beverage promotion & POS

April 19th, 2013 by Linda No comments »

Coca-Cola has long been known for its iconic contour bottle shape. The current trend in beverage marketing is to try to mimic that success. The creation of a unique bottle or can that increases recognition is becoming more important in today’s ever-crowded marketplace. Research shows that packaging as art is a lever that definitely drives consumer consideration. Ultimately the consumer will make a decision based on the experiential – the way a product sits on the shelf or how it feels in the hand.

Budweiser’s new center-crimped can (designed to reinforce their iconic bowtie image) is a great example of this trend. Craft brewing giant, Boston Beer Company, has rolled out a new flared lip, purported to better capture aroma and enhance the beer drinking experience. The standard beer/soda can has not seen such profound change since the pop top was invented in 1959.

Pepsi is rolling out a new swirl-handled bottle shape for its core product lines this April. Dainty, limited edition 7.5 ounce designer decorated cans will also grace store shelves.

With all this attention to detail, to put these functional masterpieces in mundane POS displays just seems – criminal. The opportunity to take in-store displays and develop something truly exceptional could be the only way for brands to stand out in a sea of iconic eye-candy.

Whiskey, women and the changing face of distilled spirit promotion

April 4th, 2013 by Linda No comments »

The promotion of whisky to women is not new, it is just making a comeback.

Women are drinking it, blogging about it, and cooking with it. Bars and restaurants are promoting events specifically for women who have a passion for this caramel-colored spirit, infused with notes of peat and spice. Clubs for female whisky aficionados are becoming popular. Heck, they have even their very own typeface.

Marketers who once viewed whisky as a manly man’s drink are seeing this spirit from a different perspective – a female perspective. How to win the women who love whisky? Be as bold as the women who drink it.

Customer engagement is key to stimulating trial. Below is a unique twist on sampling that’s a novel take on the age old practice of getting a target market to sip your spirit:

Taste & Peel
Tasting strips are well suited for spirits. Wafer-thin film, packaged in a branded foil packet is a unique way to deliver the flavor without the alcohol. They are very similar to mouthwash strips – but way better tasting! Technology allows you to emulate the flavor of a spirit or mixed drink. Perfect for dry tastings, on/in pack promotion, or direct mail campaigns.

 

 

 

Promotional needs for craft brew are changing with the return of THE CAN

March 12th, 2013 by Linda No comments »

Promoting craft brew used to be as simple as a new release and a bunch of brand evangelists. No so much anymore.

According to a Mintel research report, sales of craft beer have more than doubled from 5.7 billion in 2007 to 12 billion in 2012. Expectations are that market for craft beer will be an 18 billion dollar market by 2017.

Why such growth? Perhaps it is the authenticity of the product tapping into the consumer search for “real” product. Could it be that craft has become synonymous with the consumer search for products perceived to be more organic and less highly produced? Regardless, craft brew has become a beer industry powerhouse.

Along with this growth, craft brewers have begun to adopt marketing tactics more in step with their macro brewing cousins.

All hail the return of The Can.  Marketer’s beware of cookie cutter complacency. This is not beer can as usual. Specialty shapes and sizes are showing up on shelves. Four packs versus six packs, slim versus wide – craftbrewers are seeking to differentiate themselves from the ordinary. Industry standard displays will have to be tweaked or fundamentally redesigned to serve the needs of this growing segment. Research shows that a brew’s personality is a major selling feature for target markets.

Our thoughts … Time to crack open a can of your favorite brew and hit the drawing board. Craft brew promotion needs a new flavor.

How promotional products can help you tap into growing consumer optimism

February 26th, 2013 by Linda No comments »

How Americans perceive their financial situations is a fairly accurate predictor of consumer spending habits. According to a preliminary reading from the Thomson Reuters and the University of Michigan (TR/UM) index of current conditions, Americans are feeling more positive. The index just jumped from 66.6 to 68.7 for February.

Consumers seem to be giving the signal that they are open to explore the possibility of spending again. The timing seems ripe for marketers to amp up efforts to capture mindshare. It takes multiple impressions to get a consumer to take an action. In a fast-paced world that lives on short-term content, you might want to consider adding a longer term delivery mechanism like promotional products to your campaign. Here a few good reasons why:

  1. Promotional products deliver more impressions for a longer period of time than other media. According to a recent industry study, advertising specialties are kept for an average of 5.8 months.
  2. 87% of recipients could identify the advertiser associated with the item and
  3. 31% reported a high likelihood of doing
    business with the advertiser after receiving a promotional product. With a strong ROI,
    promotional products are a great addition to a multi-faceted marketing approach.

 

If you are a fact geek like me, check out the ASI study below for more detailed information.

*ASI Global Advertising Specialties Impressions Study V. 3

Fans are Open to Advertising & Promotions Around Super Bowl

January 25th, 2013 by Linda 1 comment »

The Super Bowl – the penultimate sporting event in America. Brands are vying for a slice of football watching consumer mind share and the consumers are apparently ready and willing to be wowed.

According to a Lab42 survey published in Adweek, “Nearly 40% of American adults said watching the commercials was their favorite part of the Super Bowl.”

BIGInsight for the National Retail Federation reported in a survey conducted last year that 73 % of of U.S. adults consider Super Bowl commercials to be entertainment.

Not everyone can afford the pricey commercials, but it doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t get in front of your target audience at a time when they are open to being advertised to. Promotional products surrounding Super Bowl fanfare are a great low cost, high return way to to get attention. The many quick-turn options offered in the industry, give you a variety of last minute options.

This year’s Super Bowl event is held in New Orleans over Mardi Gras. What a great time to invest in a cost-effective bead necklace solution. Beads are also kept long after the event is over. Industry statistics also point out that promotional products are kept by recipients for an average of five years.

Team color is a great way to go when you want a last-minute promotional solution. Some team color decal bead options to consider for last minute sponsorship and events:

Have some fun and get in the game with Mardi Gras inspired football promotions!

Casino and the Non-cash Incentive: Three ways to motivate player behavior

November 16th, 2012 by Linda No comments »

Non-cash incentives have a long track record of success in motivating behavior.

Non-cash awards like merchandise, travel, and gift cards are both more motivational and cost-effective than cash. Decades of collective experience and countless employee incentive/motivation studies have substantiated this statement. The net-net is that merchandise can, and does, motivate behavior.

Achieving a desired behavior is the goal of marketers. How do we influence the target audience and persuade them to take action? If non-cash incentive modifies behavior in the world of employee compensation and productivity, it stands to reason that the same principle can be applied to promotional marketing.

Let’s take the gaming industry for instance. Casinos have a high need to achieve the following objectives:

  • Create attention getting events that motivates players or prospective players to visit the property
  • Extend play when players are on property
  • Reward loyalty and repeat visits

Here are three examples of how non-cash incentives can be used to influence player behavior:

Plateau Programs
Leveled point redemption for merchandise can motivate players to increase play in order to obtain merchandise with a higher perceived value.

Shopping Sprees
Create a custom on-site shopping spree filled with luxury items. VIP or Lucky Winners are able to “shop” in exchange for a certain level of play. Tangible items can influence acquisitive behaviors and extend time on property and play.

Experiential Events
grab-and-go run is an exciting way to reward your most loyal players. Fly your players to a special off-property event. Usher VIPs into a warehouse of luxury goods, where they get a chance to run and grab the items of their choice in a pre-determined amount of time. A unique combination of non-cash incentive meets reality television. The experience will leave your most valuable players with a lasting memory and tangible proof of their value.

Mardi Gras Mayhem: Super Bowl 2013 meets the humble throw bead

October 16th, 2012 by Linda No comments »

Spectacular double-header this year with the Super Bowl in New Orleans during Mardi Gras! Let the good times roll indeed with two events that are institutions in their own right. Promotion in and around the events will be at a fever pitch. What better time to adopt long-established, well-loved, and sought-after Mardi Gras beads as your promotional product of choice.

This long-standing tradition began in the 1920’s when the Rex parade threw inexpensive glass strands into the crowd. Krewes continue to distribute thousands of bead necklaces from parade floats along the route. What started out in the traditional Mardi Gras colors, Purple (representing Justice,) Green (representing Faith,)and Gold (representing Power) are now limited only by the imagination of the advertiser.

Throw beads are a hallmark of the season and are an affordable way to get noticed. People will be collecting these souvenir items and taking them home. They are the perfect way to create brand awareness with a tried and true promotional track record. Bead Necklaces come in a variety of colors, shapes, and sizes. Look for football-shaped beads, football-shaped medallions, custom-built bead strands, and quick-turn decal medallions for those last minute promotional opportunities.

“Laissez les bons temps rouler!” Let the good times roll.