Promo, Brand & Marketing News

TOP

Clever Promotional Gift Ideas You Can Use


Promotional gifts are a dependable method for getting your brand noticed and increasing business. A few stats that may make your jaw drop:

• 8 in 10 consumers own at least 1 promotional item
• 89% of consumers can recall the name of an advertiser on a promotional product they received in the past 24 months
• More than 50% of consumers keep a promotional product from 1-4 years

…and perhaps our favorite…

• After receiving a promotional product, 85% of consumers do business with the advertiser.

Reasons, such as the ones listed above, are what we are constantly shouting from the rooftops — promotional products need to be part of your marketing strategy. From pens, to drinkware, bags, and t-shirts, there are a ton of tried-and-true options that will make potential customers really happy (success!). But this piece is dedicated to those looking to make a bigger splash by choosing something a bit off the beaten path. There are many benefits to going this route:

• A unique experience/promotional item keeps your brand memorable.
• People will be more likely to share or show off a clever item to others, extending your brand reach and impression.
• A creative product still takes advantage of all the benefits of a regular promotional item, so you won’t be missing out on anything!

Clever Corporate Gift Ideas

Now, onto the promotional goods. Keep in mind, some of these items are things people may never consider buying themselves, but would find very useful if they were to receive one. Which really, pretty much makes them the perfect gift!

2-Piece Stainless Steel Custom Reusable Straws

Reusable straws are having a moment, but that moment is really a movement.

As the threat of climate change climbs, more species are added to endangered lists, and tales of more plastic in the ocean than fish emerge, it’s no wonder the shift to be more environmentally conscious is gaining speed alongside these horrors. One simple change many people are taking notice of is simply switching to reusable straws — and by “people”, we also mean the likes of Starbucks, Coachella, and the City of Portland, all of which recently ditched plastic straws. Gifting a reusable straw is a great way to send a positive message to consumers and join the conversation for environmentally-sustainable choices.

From a practicality perspective, this is a compact, lightweight gift people can easily slip into their pocket or bag — always a great convenience when milling around a crowded convention. While any business could make the case for gifting this set of reusable straws (the need to go green is a universal conversation), it would fit especially well with a brand in the food or beverage industry, such as a coffee shop or café, or beverage brand.

Tool Sets

Most of us are not Tim “The Tool Man” Taylor, and when it comes to fixing things, well, sometimes it’s just easier to call someone. Which isn’t to say we’re incapable of fixing them, but rather we don’t have the needed tools to get the job done — which is why this compact but extremely useful tool set, made by Origaudio®, is an amazing promotional gift. The tools in this set are especially unique, as each piece is multi-use so you get the most out of each and every one. For example, the barrow tool has 10 different uses (multiple wrenches, built-in screwdriver bits, wire stripper, bottle opener, and more). This set is perfect for a low-maintenance person who needs to fix the occasional item around the house; although it’s also the perfect item to stash in your car for on-the-road emergencies. This high-quality tool set is a perfect promotional gift for a business geared towards hardware or home improvement/DIY.

Custom Emergency Kits

There’s nothing quite like the freedom of the great outdoors and being one with nature — until something goes wrong and you realize civilization is miles away. Enter this handy emergency kit. It’s wonderfully clever as a promotional item, because, well, who would ever throw it out? It’s a perfect item to stash in the car, a backpack, or among hiking/fishing/outdoor gear thanks to how compact and lightweight it is.

An emergency kit is a clever promotional gift for a brand geared towards the outdoors (hunting, fishing, climbing, hiking, etc.). Equipped with items like a whistle, knife blade, fishing hooks on line, a cotton fire tinder, among others, this emergency kit is a nice way to show clients you support their interests — and have their backs if something goes wrong.

Portable Custom Lounger

We’re going to cut right to the chase — these portable loungers are, in a word, amazing.

They make for the perfect on-to-go afternoon nap anywhere, but also have a ton of other features to love (as if portable nap ability isn’t enough). They’re huge, with the ability to hold up to 550 pounds, but fold up in a wonderfully compact, small, self-contained bag. They also require no external pump; to inflate them you simply catch the air as you walk back and forth with it. Oh, and the top inflates to create a pillow, and there’s even a pocket for a drink and an iPad®. Comfy, convenient, and environmentally friendly. Not bad at all. From a branding perspective, this large novelty item provides plenty of space to prominently display your company name, logo, etc. Similar to the custom emergency kit above, this item is a great giveaway for any outdoor-related brand, although you could make the case for its relevance in almost any industry. This portable lounger sends a relaxing message — its the item to choose if you’re going for a chill, Zen vibe with your promotional gear.

Foldable Custom Solar Charger

We’re a super tech-dependent society. iPhones®, tablets, laptops — all these items make our life wonderfully convenient and connected. But one of the massive downsides is battery life. We can all relate to the annoyance (and maybe slight panic) of searching for an outlet when our battery life is dangerously low and flashing red. Enter this dreamy foldable solar charger. Its compact design makes it perfect for use anywhere. And it’s wonderfully environmentally friendly, which, as discussed above, is a trending (and serious) topic du jour. This solar charger, like the reusable straws, sends a message of your brand being connected to the green movement. And frankly, it’s just a cool product; a conversation starter. Having your brand imprinted on it is a great way to get in on that conversation. The solar charger is a great gift for a business that wants to send a green message with a high-end product.

Wireless Charging Custom Padfolio

This smart padfolio is a must-have business item. It’s a 2-in-1 product that allows someone to take notes while simultaneously charging their device. A multitasking dream wrapped up in a sleek design! A blend of old and new, it houses a notepad (like, literal paper), elastic pen loops, a smartphone stand, and, drum roll, a charging bank, which you can connect to wirelessly. This item is perfect for any business-minded, on-the-go person. It’s a fantastic way to have everything you need for roving meetings — coffee shops, business lunches, conferences, etc. This handsome padfolio makes a wonderful gift from any business-oriented industry, such as a law firm, advertising agency, hospital, or university.

Bottle Shaped Water-Resistant Custom Bluetooth Speaker

This handy Bluetooth® speaker is indeed clever — a tech item with the look of a water bottle

(a wildly popular promotional item) provides an interesting aesthetic. It also provides great functionality, as it’s portable, rechargeable, and even water resistant. It has a rubber carrying handle that can be clipped onto a backpack for ease of travel, especially when at the beach or camping. While it makes for a fun gift for an outdoor, or party-oriented business, a Bluetooth speaker is useful, literally, anywhere. It’s a really good “show off” item that can be used at home or even on a desk.

Smart Wifi Video Promotional Doorbell

This promotional item will really get people talking — it’s out there, in the most wonderful, tech savvy way. It’s functional, serving a real purpose, but is on theme with items people will love, but not necessarily buy for themselves. The smart Wi-Fi doorbell features some super cool things. For starters, it produces a live feed, which streams to your smartphone so you can instantly see and communicate with whoever is at your door. It also starts recording as soon as its sensor is triggered, which is a fantastic safety measure. And it’s not impeded by nightfall, thanks to its infrared technology that allows it to work in the dark. This is a dream promotional gift for any business related to safety and/or security. One such industry could be an insurance company that provides this clever gift for policy-holders, perhaps as a welcome gift or a 5-year “thank you” gift.

We hope these creative promotional gifts have made you think outside-the-box when it comes to corporate giveaways. Of course, there’s always a place for the more common (and highly popular) items, such as mugs and tote bags, but the items discussed in this piece just bring a little more oomph — which will get your potential customer’s attention (and appreciation). Check out all of these items, and more, on ePromos.com. Looking for something off-the-wall that isn’t listed here? Get in touch. We’re always happy to brainstorm with you to find the perfect promotional product to increase your brand awareness and wow your customers.


TOP

Promo Trends Mid-Year Review


Back at the start of 2019 we had some big ideas about what to expect in the coming year for the promotional products industry. Diving headfirst into the new year, we got a good “first look” at some of the hottest trends. Now that we’ve made it halfway through 2019 (can you even believe it?) let’s take a look back and see how our predictions have fared with this mid-year review.

Fresh off the Floor of the ASI Show® Chicago

It’s been an exciting few days as we scouted out the most sought-after items of the year. Which of the trends from January are still going strong this summer and which should you set aside? You’re about to find out. Let’s review.

The “Glam” Trend

At the start of the year we saw a lot of shiny and brilliant surfaces – a lot of iridescent and metallic materials in everything from lip balm to apparel to drinkware. Now we’re finding that these eye-popping finishes are not quite as prevalent though not completely gone either. A new item in this category showing that all is not lost is the iridescent PopSockets®. We’re also finding a lot more in the realm of sequins and glitter.

The Safety Trend

Safety is always at the top of everyone’s list of priorities. Though we’ve called it out as a trend, it’s really more of a constant. Choosing safety items will never go out of style. A new fav we just couldn’t wait to share…this collapsible solar lantern, which makes a great companion for any travel.

The Wireless Charging Trend

Wireless charging is here to stay! And with good cause. Who doesn’t love eliminating wires for the devices we use daily? Technology is always on trend, and with wireless charging you definitely have a reliable choice to show your clients how up-to-date your business is.

The Give-Back Trend

People love to support a cause. Earlier this year we observed a trend for giving back to the community or environment. In Chicago we’re seeing this passion for social and environmental sustainability has not dwindled. In fact, we expect the second half of the year to continue to climb in reusable and eco-friendly products as well as those with an effective give-back program.

The Retail-Inspired Trend

If anything, we’ve seen an increase in retail-inspired items as the year progresses. The most recent jump in color-changing, mood products lends itself to this very trend thanks to Starbucks’® reusable mood cups. The promo industry is also picking up speed in retail-inspired fanny packs!

The “Spending More Time Outdoors” TrendLime Squeezer

Now that summer is in full swing, we seem to be seeing a lot of items in this category. And it makes sense, of course. From corn hole games and lime squeezers to beach towel bands, sunglasses and patchwork on blankets and caps, the industry is practically screaming “go outside,” as well it should!

The Modern Trend

The sophisticated look of wood tones and marbles were prevalent in promotional drinkware, bags and journals early in the year. Now we’re finding these modern-looking styles in the technology category as well – another trend that doesn’t seem to be going away any time soon. New to the scene with their minimalistic design are these 8 oz. skinny bottles – leak proof and BPA free, these cuties are perfect for more feminine brands looking to make their mark.Perka 8oz Bottles

NEW Trends for the Second Half of 2019

The most notable trend worth focusing on in the second half of 2019 is smart home technology. This is a big one! Up until recently smart home technology was reserved for the elite, made unaffordable and unattainable for the average consumer. Thankfully that’s no longer the case.

And with the promotional products industry, smart home devices have become even more accessible. They are, without a doubt, some of the most useful and sought-after gifts you can use to market your business and get people talking. Like this app-enabled smart-button, for example. Program up to three tasks at once and stick it under your desk. Knock once? Start the coffee. Knock twice? Turn off the lights. Think of the possibilities! OrigAudio App Enabled Smart Button

Another trend continuing to make waves – hydration. We couldn’t get enough of this smart hydration reminder, helping to calculate how much water you’ve consumed each day. Genius!

hydration reminder

So, there you have it – a look back and a look forward. Let’s make the second half of 2019 even better than the first with trending promos to put your business on top. Stay tuned throughout the year for updates, and stay on top of what’s trending by following us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn and Pinterest!


TOP

Win Customers & Loyalty with These Innovative Gifts


Gifting promotional products is a must, regardless of the size of your business. There are a ton of benefits to using promotional giveaways in your marketing strategy. It’s a great way to spread your brand.

Innovative Gifts to win Customers + Loyalty

Here are some quick facts on the importance of promotional products:

• 8 out of 10 people have 1-10 promotional products and 63% give away their promotional products when not needed
• 6 out of 10 people keep promotional products for up to two years
• 85% of people do business with a brand after receiving a promotional item from them

That said, loads of companies give away promotional products for all the reasons above and more. So, how do you make sure your promotional product doesn’t get lost in the sea of promotional goodies at a convention or other event full of vendors with this same strategy? You must get creative. A creative giveaway will stop consumers in their tracks, or, better yet, have them hunt you down at said convention when words gets out about your swag.

Mastercard is a great example of a brand getting creative with their giveaways. A few years ago at the Sony Open, they handed out sweet swag bags to Elite Mastercard holders. The bags were full of useful items that attendees could use instantly, like binoculars to better watch the tennis matches, and handheld fans to stay cool in the Miami heat.

Speaking of Sony, they opened a sweepstakes for Sony Rewards members last year that drew over 12,000 people to enter (remember, swag can be contest-based!). What was unique about this swag was that the winner won one million Sony Reward points. The points evened out to about $10,000, which could be used to purchase Sony gear. A contest is a fun way to get a crowd excited but when there’s only one winner, most folks forget about it as soon as it’s over.

Below we offer some creative ideas for your next promotional giveaway:

Idea #1: Speakers and Radios 

A custom speaker or radio is some seriously sweet swag. It’s an unexpected gift, and one that consumers will, if nothing else, hang onto it simply out of curiosity (unlike a pen). It’s an especially great gift for any vacation or outdoorsy oriented business, as a speaker or radio is the perfect addition to a beach day or camping trip. Does your business do podcasts? Giving out portable speakers is a unique way to encourage them to tune into your next one.

Idea #2: Web Cam Covers

As workplaces become more flexible, laptops are the computer of choice and Skye-style webinars the new face-to-face meeting. The downside—the fear of loss of privacy, especially as camera hacking reports continue to pop up. Sticky notes, Band-Aids, tape…they’ve all been used to cover the camera on a computer. And while they work, they’re not an ideal solution. Enter web cam covers, a simple plastic cover that easily slides on and off the camera feature of a laptop. A simple tool that serves a huge purpose and gives peace of mind—watch them practically fly off your table.

Idea #3: Custom Food Containers 

Mugs and water bottles are popular promotional giveaways, and for good reason. They’re practical and useful everyday items that people need. But for all their good, they don’t exactly scream creativity. To make a splash with your next food-related giveaway, consider these unique custom food containers. They’re perfect for on-the-go meals, and even include a fork and removable sauce container that is nested into the lid.

Idea #4: Custom Socks

Apparel is a great giveaway. T-shirts and hats are often popular choices, but socks? They’ve been having a moment for a few years now, for both men and women. Add a quirky touch to your next giveaway by gifting consumers with custom socks. They can be as funky as you want, as ePromos has the ability to fully customize them. Of course, you’ll want to include your company logo or design, but also consider adding a unique twist by including the citys cape or famous landmark where your event is being held—something that makes the socks equal parts souvenir and brand promotion. 

Idea #5: Mini Custom Scented Sachet

From organic food to yoga and essential oils, health and wellness is booming. This makes a wellness-related promotional product a great giveaway, especially for a health-minded crowd. These mini custom scented sachets, which come in a range of scents like vanilla and lavender, are a lovely—and creative— way to bring relaxation to a conference, festival, or other busy event.

We hope these ideas have gotten your creative juices flowing for your next creative promotional giveaway. Don’t hold back either, as the more innovative, the greater chances consumers will not only be interested in your giveaway, but remember your brand, and in turn, become a loyal customer.


TOP

10 Good Swag Ideas to Promote Your Brand Offline


Promotional giveaways should always be a part of your marketing strategy. It’s a great way to gain brand recognition, strengthen customer loyalty, and engage potential new customers. Promotional swag provides an opportunity to make an impression that extends beyond a single meet and greet type of event—on average, folks keep promotional products for about eight months. That’s much longer than the single Saturday afternoon you manned the company booth at a community event or industry conference. Further, a whopping 63% of people pass along their promotional swag when they’re finished with it, creating another life for the swag and extending your brand. All in all, gifting promotional goods can be a fantastically smart, organic way to grow your brand offline. After all, an eight-month shelf-life is much longer than a quickly closed internet ad or commercial. 

To be effective, a giveaway should attract your target audience and serve as an ambassador of your company/brand/product. How does the promotional swag help tell your brand’s story? How is it representing your brand to the outside world, to customers old and new? If you can’t make a direct connection from your swag to your brand, how will customers? There’s no denying it, people love free stuff. But will said free stuff make them remember you? In order to eke the needle closer to yes, consider not only how the promotional giveaway relates to your brand, but if it’s:
• Useful—folks will keep it (maybe even past the average 8 months mentioned above)
• Memorable—making an impression with your target audience will increase the likelihood of them remembering your brand, and associating it positively
• Fun—being able to make people laugh should never be underrated, so don’t be scared to be silly with your swag

While they’re certainly not a new concept, giveaways are still an immensely important and strategic marketing route. Below, we offer 10 of our favorite promotional swag giveaways ideas for your next offline gifting event.

Giveaway Ideas

#1 Apparel

Apparel makes for a great giveaway because, frankly, it’s something everyone has a need for. T-shirts, in particular, can be a very powerful giveaway—just ask this guy. Apparel is basically a walking billboard for your brand, so it’s hard to imagine any brand that wouldn’t benefit from this type of giveaway swag, from a local handyman to a San Fran tech startup.

#2 Mobile Tech

We’re living in a digital world, no doubt. In fact, within the U.S., a resounding 77% of the population owns a smartphone. That’s some serious market share. There’s a plethora of mobile tech giveaways that are relevant for, if nothing else, the fact that so many folks own them. Car chargers, phone/tablet cases, earbuds, power banks…the list goes on…and on. These are items that will remain useful daily. Slap your company name and logo on them, and voilà, your brand is now potentially part of everyday customer life. This may not seem like much, but that constant name/logo recognition is powerful—it will help establish a sense of trust simply from seeing it so much.

#3 Kid Friendly4-Pack of Kids Bath Crayons

If your target audience includes either kids or parents, you should seriously consider some kid-friendly swag. Even if kids aren’t attending the event, these swag items make a sweet little gift for parents to give to their babes when they get home. This could include fun items like bubbles, crayons, sidewalk chalk, bouncy balls, coloring books, stickers, and more—all things kids will eat up.

#4 Edibles

Snacks, sweets, chocolates…edible swag just may be the best swag (hey—it’s the most delicious at least). A long day of visiting vendors at a big conference or day-long event will leave anyone hungry. Providing nourishment for the crowd is a great way to help folks recharge and refresh themselves with something delicious. You also get a lot of opportunities for customization with food, particularly candies—colors, flavors, and yes, you can even brand some.

#5 Project Oriented

Gifting swag that’s project oriented, like a pack of seeds (plant them!), a puzzle (solve it!), or games (play them!) invites people to spend time with the promotional product—and inevitably time seeing your company name/logo—again, brand recognition equals trust.

#6 Shopping Bags and Totesreusable custom shopping tote bag

Reusable shopping bags and totes are a growing trend—a wonderful win for the green, environmentally-friendly/conscious movement. They’re a great alternative to single use plastic bags at the grocery store, farmers market, or even the mall. In a word, they’re fabulously practical. They also provide a nice chunk of space to display your company name, logo, tagline, and more.

#7 Mugs and Tumblers

Europe just overwhelmingly voted to ban single use plastic—another sign of the evolving green movement (and the strong foothold it’s gaining around the globe). Mugs and tumblers may seem like a basic item, but they’re extremely useful. Sure, everyone has mugs at home, but so many people don’t think to bring one into the office, instead filling up with paper, plastic, or worse, styrofoam cups instead. Tumblers, on the other hand, are great for anywhere—in the office, but also whenever folks are on-the-go and may be tempted to reach for a plastic bottle of water.

If you’d like to promote the green perspective of a mug or tumbler, consider working it into the design of the mug, even if your company isn’t necessarily a green-focused company. After all, we all have care about Mother Earth!

#8 Beauty Items

Estimated at about $445 billion, the beauty industry is one heck of a powerful industry. With that in mind, it’s kind of a no-brainer to give out beauty related swag like lip balms, soap, essential oils, lotions, and more. That said, this isn’t a one-size-fits-all—your brand should have some connection to beauty, well-being, health, or even just women in order to connect with potential and existing customers.

#9 Sport Gear

Sports are a powerful thing. From little tykes kicking around a soccer ball, to adult softball leagues, you almost never outgrow how good it feels to run around chasing a ball with friends. Frisbees, golf balls, basketballs, hockey pucks—the options are almost endless when it comes to sport-centric promotional swag. This theme doubles as being kid-friendly, too, so even if the adult passes on the offer to play, their kids likely won’t.

#10 Vacation Gear

Our Basecamp Tundra bottleVacation leaning promotional swag is a great idea for Spring/Summer events since that’s when most vacations tend to take place. Longer days and glorious heat have most folks eager to head to a body of water—the ocean if you’re close enough, or a lake if your landlocked. Sun and surf-oriented gear can include sunglasses, flip-flops, beach towels, water bottles and more. For a camp vibe, binoculars, flashlights, and tin mugs are great options. To beat the heat, a small, electronic handheld fans or visors are unbeatable.

We hope these ten ideas have got your wheels turning for all the different swag you can create for your next offline event. When choosing items, remember to try to understand your audience, and how your swag represents and speaks to your brand. Folks may love free stuff, but if it doesn’t connect to your brand/product/service, it will be difficult for potential customers to make the association—undermining your goal of gaining trust. For specific items mentioned in these 10 items, check out ePromos wide range of promotional swag for your next event!


TOP

Cool Giveaways to Throw in a Sponsored Swag Bag


People love free stuff, which is why gifting a swag bag at your next event is a genius way to not only get noticed, but instantly get on potential customers’ good sides from the beginning. A swag bag, in case you’re not familiar, is a goodie bag full of items like branded goods and samples. They’re usually handed out to folks at events, corporate parties, and other sponsored gatherings. They are a great way to thank guests for attending and making sure they remember your brand.

In short, it’s hard not to love a swag bag. But if you’re going to do one, do it right. After all, your brand or logo will be all over the items inside it—each item is a mini representation of your company. As such, you don’t want to just throw whatever cheap items into it. Your swag bag should be obviously connected to your brand, while being thoughtful and useful.

Sponsored swag bags are also a smart way to stand out in a crowd, especially when trying to win over the crowd at a conference or trade show when throngs of brands are all vying for customers’ attentions. Rather than throwing a few free typical items like pens or water bottles across your booth, switch it up with the conference equivalent of a party favor. Below, we offer 10 of our favorite items to stash inside a swag bag.

Cool Tradeshow Giveaway Ideas

Giveaway #1: Reusable Water Bottles

26 oz Triple Insulated Water Bottle

 

Limiting single-use plastic in favor of more sustainable options is a growing movement around the country, especially for millennials. A sustainable, reusable water bottle is a great way to exhibit your corporate responsibility to the environment in a very trending way.

 

Giveaway #2: Wireless Charging Pads

Looking to excite a tech-friendly crowd? Consider throwing a wireless charging pad into the swag bag. They’re small and lightweight, making them easily fit inside a bag of (nearly) any size. And frankly, they’re neat and unique—a nice upgrade from the standard cord charger. They’re also versatile, working well in the office or at home.

Giveaway #3: Tote or Drawstring Bags

When putting together a swag bag, all your attention will likely go into what you ought to put in the bag but don’t forget—you actually need a bag. Rather than using a bag that will end up in the trash, why not opt for a branded reusable bag (hello, sustainability)? Reusable bags are a favorite promotional giveaway, as they have a strong lasting power. Fill one up with goodies? Even better.

Giveaway #4: Pens

The promotional pen may get an eye roll for being an old standby but they’re actually incredibly useful. With nearly all our communication these days being digital, folks rarely think to carry a pen with them, despite it being an office/desk staple. Simply put, having a pen in your swag bag will come in useful for attendees.

Giveaway #5: PopSockets

You might have seen this useful accessory attached to phones recently. Although trendy, PopSockets help improve grip on expensive mobile phones. Tradeshow attendees (and their kids) will appreciate an affordable yet practical piece of mobile tech applicable in daily life. Plus, when the PopSocket becomes attached, it creates a walking billboard of your brand or logo for whoever can’t put down their phone.

Giveaway #6: Lunch & Cooler Bags 

Multi-day conferences and tradeshows can get expensive for attendees (especially if not work-sponsored). Multiple bottles of water, snacks throughout the day, breakfast, lunch…it adds up fast. It’s not uncommon for folks to bring their own snacks, but they often end up squished and crumpled from laying in the bottom of a bag all day. Help folks out by gifting them a lunch bag—an easy way to carry snacks and even meals with them during the event.

Giveaway #7: Lip Balm

Lip balm is kind of a phenomenon…and a multimillion-dollar industry. As a cold-weather necessity, women are almost never without some on hand. This is a swag-bag item that’s not only going to get some love, but a long-life—folks will likely use it until it’s used up.

Giveaway #8: Baseball Hats

T-shirts are a favorite promotional item because folks tend to keep and wear them for a long time to come, but they can be tricky when you’re trying to appeal to folks in a one-size-fits-all manner. Swag bags need to be stuffed and ready to go prior to the event, so you can forget tailoring them to each attendee (can you imagine trying to check each person’s size preference at a huge event?). Enter the baseball cap. Same principal as the t-shirt, but much more universal and easier to fit all most attendees.

Giveaway #9: Web Cam Covers

Technology is fantastic but like all good things, it has its bad side, too. Privacy is a huge issue when it comes to computers, especially with the threat of hackers who can break into webcams. Conspiracy theories aside, it’s also far too easy to accidentally turn your webcam on during a team meeting—and suddenly everyone sees that you’re running it in your pajamas at home. To avoid these mishaps, many folks place tape, a sticky note, etc., over the webcam on their computer. Gifting a real web cam cover in a swag bag will delight guests (and likely make them wonder why they’ve been using a sticker all this time…).

Giveaway #10: Notebooks

Soft Touch Lined Custom JournalLike a pen, paper has been largely traded in for its digital counterpart (much to the relief of forests everywhere). That said, there are plenty of times you still wish you had a piece of paper handy, especially when at an event like a conference or tradeshow where it’s difficult to lug around a laptop. A notebook is a great way for folks to jot down notes while on-the-go or while listening to presentations. Placing one in a swag bag is like gifting the thing folks didn’t know they needed—but do.

We hope these ideas for swag bags have got your wheels turning as you prepare for your next event. Just remember, while folks love free stuff, it’s the quality/functional/thought-out items that they’ll actually use and keep—and everything in your bag (including said bag) is a representation of your brand. Make sure it’s giving off a message that’s on track with your brand, its values, and voice.


TOP

Why is Brand Consistency Important to Business?


Carving out your brand is important, essential even, but do you know what brand really means? Is it the products you create? A business logo? Business name? Many would easily answer “yes”, but a brand is much more than a visual representation.

Why is brand CONSISTENCY important to businessA Brand is the perception of your business and/or products. It’s what makes you stand apart from the competition and how customers identify your business in the crowded, ever-growing market. It’s also how you gain loyal customers, who are said to spend some 67% more than a new customer. With numbers like that, it’s no wonder business are focused on cultivating their brand in a bid to win over customer love and loyalty.

The importance of brand has led to brand-focused marketing, rather than product-first. The difference? A brand-focused marketing strategy is ever-cultivating the distinct identify that makes up your brand. Product-first marketing, on the other hand, focuses on pushing out a new product without the detail paid to the brand voice. Ergo, get the product to market in a bid to get money flowing in. While not inherently a bad goal by any means, it is somewhat short sighted. Think of it this way: “brand is strategy, marketing is tactical.” While you need those smaller tactical wins to build a business, it’s your overall strategy that will allow your business to survive the long haul.

Brand consistency, or the art of communicating to the public in a consistent voice that clearly mirrors your business’ core values and identity, is everything. Not convinced? Keep reading for 5 reasons why brand consistency is so important across all channels—digital marketing, social media, billboards, commercials, and more.

5 Reasons Why Brand Consistency is Important

1. Increase Brand Trust

Trust is key to any good relationship, including that of business and customer. Once you establish your brand identify, customers will come to expect certain messages and actions from you in your marketing—keeping brand consistency is vital to not only avoid customer confusion, but also vital to avoid losing customer trust. Always remember, customers have an emotional connection to your business, which is established through trust. Gain their trust and gain a lifelong customer.

2. Increase Awareness and Recognition of Brand

Brand consistency helps customers (both potential and existing) pick out your brand amid the crowd. This should include consistency with the use of a logo, colors used in designs, and slogans. While these tangible items are a cinch to reproduce across marketing products, it can be more difficult to get the same level of consistency in voice. It’s the character of your brand, if you will—and you will likely need to spend the most time honing it for consistency. That said, it’s well worth the effort, as customers will come to recognize these details over time.

3. Standing Out Among the Competition

Customers are bombarded by options, especially when one considers the un-ending options that are churned out from a simple browse on retail giants like Amazon. The market is more global than ever, and purchases are made with a simple digital button push. Capturing customers isn’t easy among so many choices and frankly, the market is noisy. It’s all too easy to get lost in the rumble. By focusing on your brand identify, and keeping it consistent, customers will be able to easily recognize your voice in the crowd.

4. Building Upon Existing Success

Businesses are ever-evolving, just like the rest of the world. Being able to stay nimble and dynamic when changes come, all the while keeping a consistent branding is what sets apart a business in it for the long-haul. For instance, brands like Apple and Coco-Cola have been around for decades, yet they’ve shown flexibility in adapting to ever-changing times while staying true to their core values. That said, they’ve remained true to their core values and identity, making it easier for customers to adapt and change with them.

5. Controlling the Perception of Your Brand

Staying consistent is key to controlling the public perception of your brand. Things are bound to go astray at times, whether from internal or external sources. While it may cause customer upset, sticking with the consistent, trusted messaging customers know (and love) you for will go a long way in weathering the storm.
Hopefully we’re on the same page—brand consistency is king, which the above five items have helped drive home. Now, let’s explore four strategies to increase brand consistency.

4 Strategies to Increase Brand Consistency

1. Visual Consistency for Logo and Design

Your logo and design MUST (!) be consistent. Otherwise, you’re sure to cause all sorts of confusion for customers (and lost revenue for yourself). The power of the logo shouldn’t be underestimated. Look at Apple for example. A simple, bitten apple. Considered for what it is, this simple logo doesn’t seem all that significant, but trust it is instantly recognized a good portion of the world over—even when displayed apart from an actual product (like on the back of a laptop or phone). That little logo bears tremendous weight. With it come all the expectations of the company, the brand that’s been gaining steam since the early 90’s.

That said, Apple is a behemoth. Perhaps you’re a small-town boutique looking to carve a name out on Main St, Anytown, America. You can still find plenty of opportunities to get your logo out into the public, such as having customized shopping bags created with a logo front and center. The best part of this idea? Folks almost always save and reuse a quality shopping bag, allowing your logo to get even more circulation.

2. Internal Team Alignment

The bigger your organization, the more challenging this one can be—but it’s also more reason to focus on it. Ensuring that each company division such as sales, marketing, and design are on the same page is paramount in making sure your brand identity remains clear and on point. Remember, it’s how your customers recognize you in a crowd and trust your business. You can’t afford to deploy an array of mismatched branding simply due to internal confusion or lack of connecting teams altogether.

3. Choosing Brand-Appropriate Channels to Engage Customers

So much of honing your brand identity and voice is understanding your customer. That doesn’t mean your identify changes each time a new group strikes an interest in your product/business, but as discussed above, being amenable to changes in society can help ensure longevity. Social media is a great example of something new that has taken the world by storm—old and new brands alike. Nike is a great example. Officially launched in 1971, they’re credited with being one of the great social media brands of today, (despite starting way before the Internet was even a thing). But a large cohort of Nike customers are young—and they’re on social media. So naturally, Nike has met them there. Make sure to engage on social media channels that make the most sense for your brand or industry and use data to find which relevant demographics prefer specific networks.

4. Creating Brand-Appropriate Local Partnerships

Going into your customers’ communities is a great way to really connect with them where they’re at (literally). That said, you can’t team up with just anyone simply because you share/target a common location. What’s important is that they are an alley to your brand identity. For example, a local gym could be a potentially great partner for a nutritious snack food company. Bottom-line: your customers are buying other things, but there is a theme or a way to can connect them (kid-friendly, healthy, adventurous, beauty, etc.) to your business. Understanding your audience and demographic should naturally lead you to potential brand-appropriate local partners.

We hope this piece has allowed you to start thinking about how important brand consistency is, and the ways in which you can start honing yours to stand out in the crowd. Just remember, say what you mean, and stay authentic and reliable. Customers will notice, and they’ll prize you for it.

Interested in seeing how we keep our branding consistent? Follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Linked In and Pinterest!