Do Promotional Products Turn You Off?

Let’s be real here. When someone talks to you about promotional products, you think of pens, coffee mugs, refrigerator magnets, and all the other cheap-o geegaws and trinkets that simply chew at your bottom line.

If you’re an advertiser (and every business is an advertiser – even if your business is selling advertising), you tend to see these give-aways as little more than giving away part of your marketing budget or net profits.

If you’re an ad agency or the like, promo products often are viewed with about the same respect you’d give a carnival sideshow hawker. Tangible advertising – and that’s what promo products are – rarely figures in the development of campaigns.

In both cases, it’s a shame. Promo products aren’t just stuff. Employed and deployed properly, they constitute dimensional marketing…and the kind of marketing that has stay-ability far more than any print ad, brochure, TV commercial, radio spot, or social media burst.

Think about it a minute.

When you read an ad in magazine or newspaper, do you cut it out and then keep it for weeks or months or even longer?

When you hear a radio spot, do you record it for playback again and again?

When you see a TV commercial, does it then it on your desk or hang on your refrigerator or otherwise simply stay around?

Of course not.

But look around your home and office. How many of those low-class advertising fuzzballs do you have…and see (and maybe even use) every day?

Pens? Coffee cups? Fridge magnets? Mouse pads? Post-It notepads? Calendars? Matchbooks? Coasters? Victorinox pocket knives? Pickle pickers?

You see, dimensional marketing products aren’t just products. They have the very real potential to be 24/7 billboards for your business. By themselves, they many not demand immediate response from a prospective customer. But they hang around, and they keep your name constantly in front of your target audience.

I don’t know about you, but for me I can’t count the number of times I’ve turned to my refrigerator to find the name and phone number of a service I’ve needed. It might be plumber or gardener or take-your-pick, and it could well be someone I’ve never called before.

But I had a need, and I remembered “some name” and then went to my fridge, only to find that business card magnet.

One of the key principles of advertising is the generation of impressions. That comes not only from the number of eyes that see or ears that hear your ads, but more form the number of times those eyes and ears receive your message. Why do you think, for example, that you see the same stupid commercial umpteen times while you’re watching TV?

Yet in terms of continuous impressions, no medium can match that of the lowly little refrigerator magnet…and that, folks, is where the power of dimensional marketing begins.

Now I’m hungry for a hot dog. Where’s my pickle picker?

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