Why Use Branded Merchandise?

This article has been provided by Steel City and looks into the benefits of using branded merchandise in your marketing plan.

Here at Steel City we are fully-fledged promotional products and branded merchandise geeks.  We passionately believe that adding branded gifts to your marketing activity will promote your business, raise brand awareness and help to achieve brand loyalty. After all, promotional merchandise is the only marketing medium that allows you to say thank you to your customers, which can help make that customer feel appreciated.  Branded merchandise will:

  • Cut through digital marketing noise and make your brand stand out
  • Make your brand more memorable
  • Connect and engage with your clients
  • Build and nurture business relationships
  • Complement a well-executed marketing mix of tactics

Branded merchandise statistics

Research carried out by our trade association the BPMA, demonstrates the impact branded products can have as a marketing medium:

87% of customers advise that they have kept a promotional item for longer than a year.

96% of people believe branded products increases a company’s brand awareness.

83% of customers suggested they can name the brand of a product on their desk.

83% of people purchasing products or services from companies that have provided branded merchandise to them.

Nearly 51% of customers recommend that promotional products have the best ability to get them to take action.

7 in 10 marketers use branded merchandise to raise brand awareness.

Promotional products are almost six times as likely to make recipients feel appreciated than the mediums of print, web, direct mail or TV.

Why choose branded products?

Marketing is multi-faceted.  We are bombarded with advertising whether it be from social media, sponsored adverts, website banners, content marketing right through to TV, bus and magazine adverts. Technology advancements mean there is a strong pull for marketers to focus on digital and online marketing to ensure the brands message is heard.

One way to cut through the digital noise, or indeed enhance your digital impact is with branded merchandise. It is evident that customers make deeper, emotional associations with your brand if they receive a personalised, useful gift with a clear call to action.  By using a branded item, you are getting in front of your clients on a daily basis, with something much more meaningful than for example a social media post.

How to make the most out of your branded merchandise:

A promotional gift delivers its full impact when the recipient finds it useful. Choose the right and relevant branded product for your target market, and it will be kept and used for an incredible amount of time. This will mean your brand is seen regularly and will likely be the company your customer will think to use when they are in need of your services or products. Better still, if your branded product is within your customers’ sight or reach just when they are making that key decision, you will be far more likely to receive an order.

For example, if your customer is based in an office, the largest marketing area is around their desk, with pens, calendars, mugs, and notepads reported as the most useful promotional gifts.

How do branded items gain brand loyalty?

Branded items gain brand loyalty.  How you may ask? Just by sending a thoughtful promotional gift, whether it be to thank the recipient or let them know you are thinking of them, you will instil a favourable association with your company. When a promotional item is useful and can actually improve someone’s working day, you will be gaining trust with that person and be helping to create a loyalty to your brand.

Why choose promotional merchandise over another advertising medium?

Business gifts that carry your branding and CTA’s can be a highly effective tactic especially when part of a well executed marketing campaign.  When compared to other advertising mediums, branded merchandise is a key consideration. Statistics taken from the BPMA research indicate that over 50% of marketers asked felt promotional products was the best advertising medium to get clients to take action. A similar picture is presented when marketers were asked which advertising medium they felt was best suited to invoking loyalty to an event or cause. 58.6% voted for promotional merchandise in comparison to the other marketing methods.

Best media to get clients to take action

Best media best at invoking loyalty

Is branded merchandise worth the expenditure?

Even though purchasing branded merchandise may initially seem like a high expenditure, the longevity of the product will potentially make it a better use of budget than something more fleeting. We call this “cost per impression”. For example, how many times will your phone number be seen on a mug in its lifetime of use versus an advert in a paper?

With 83% of people purchasing products or services from companies that have provided branded merchandise to them, by investing in a useful promotional item targeted at your client base, you will see a positive impact on your ROI.  This is backed up by the fact that 7 in 10 marketers use promotional products to raise brand awareness.

So whether you use branded merchandise to add creativity to and personalise a direct mail campaign, as a thank you gift to loyal clients or colleagues, or to promote awareness at an event, promotional products are an extremely effective marketing tactic. Branded merchandise will gain exposure, engage with your clients, nurture and build relationships and hence impact positively on your ROI.


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