Do you own an Apple Computer shirt from 1977? Or a Dell mouse pad from 1983? If so, your booty may be worth something as a collector’s item. I’m not saying that Main Street Benefit Specialists’ water bottles or ABC Insurance Brokers’ calendars will end up on eBay someday. But there’s no denying that the permanence of objects that display brand names can keep paying dividends a long time down the road. Advertising specialties, as they say, is the “medium that remains to be seen.”
So should your agency take up a mascot such as a duck, a stag or a beagle? That might work for insurance companies. But your insurance marketing should be more pragmatic. Cute and cuddly mascots may be memorable, but they don’t usually communicate to a broad audience. Focus on items that get repeated use and frequent public exposure: beer and coffee mugs, water bottles, shirts, hats, pens, calendars, golf umbrellas, and so on.
To some extent, your choice should reflect your corporate culture. Calendars and pens are always a safe bet, especially a very nice pen for a special client. Water bottles, beach balls and t-shirts are fun. There’s an entire line of eco-friendly products that are very popular now. On the other hand, though we’ve seen it done, we don’t recommend putting your business name on condoms.
What are some of the occasions when you can use advertising specialties in your marketing strategy?
- To reward people who give you referrals
- To give to new customers
- When you participate in trade shows or consumer fairs
- To use as giveaways at seminars you give or at events you sponsor (like golf tournaments)
- To use any time you want to say “thank you” to customers, prospects, vendors, tradesmen you deal with day to day, or anyone else.
One last thing: You should never feel that using advertising specialties is in any way unethical. As long as the market values of the products you give away are nominal, you should have no worries. People will not be obligated to do business with you if you give them a water bottle. They take it for granted that you are giving them something they will find useful, and in return they are giving you something you find useful: publicity
P.S. f you’re curious and want to check out some ad specialties that might work for you, click here