10 Types of Emotions Promotional Products Can Evoke

10 Emotions Promotional Products Can Evoke


Promotional products are a special type of advertising medium. They can make people happy. They can satisfy hunger. They can bring comfort. They can bring relief. They can promote joy.

If you can reach the emotions of your customers and prospects, your advertising and marketing efforts will be exponentially more successful. These tangible advertising items can connect with your clients to help drive brand awareness and customer loyalty.

No other advertising medium has the power to reach so many emotions. Additionally, no other advertising medium has the staying power of promotional products. Once you buy them, they stick around at no extra cost. Try finding that benefit with any other form of advertising. You can’t.

Shaver et al. (2001) identified the 6 basic types of primary emotions, followed by the secondary and tertiary emotions. While many other theorists have come up with alternate flowcharts, this one is commonly accepted. The 6 primary emotions are Love, Joy, Surprise, Anger, Sadness, and Fear. Below you’ll find 10 of the emotions which promotional products can evoke, which can help to strengthen the connections between your customers and your company.

10 Types of Emotions Promotional Products Can Evoke

  1. AmusementSomething that provides entertainment. The right promotional item can be amusing. Whether it’s a mood changing cup, a goofy hat, a puzzle, or some other type of promotional toy, these fun promos can provide hours of amusement to both kids and adults. People love to be amused, especially as a short respite from their stressful day.
  2. DelightTo please someone greatly. There is too much discontent, unhappiness, and disappointment in the world, so if you are able to delight someone, your effort will be memorable. Obviously likes and dislikes vary from person to person, however, with a little careful consideration, you can choose the right products for your customers and prospects.
  3. ExcitementA feeling of great enthusiasm and eagerness. When giving away your promos, the more you build the excitement, the more it will be remembered. In fact, if you can create an experience, you can involve multiple emotions for the best effect. A vital piece of this puzzle is to ensure you are giving away promotional products that are worthy of excitement. Another way to really build up excitement is to include your promotional giveaways in custom packaging that is decorated to fit the theme of your campaign.
  4. JoyA feeling of great pleasure and happiness.  While similar to delight, joy is a longer lasting emotion. You can help give that feeling of joy in many ways when giving promotional items. One such way is sending a thoughtful promo along with a handwritten note letting that person know how much you appreciate them and what they do. Build them up, and you will give them joy. Another way is to piggyback your promotional items with events and holidays for which are near and dear to your clients’ hearts such as Christmas, Easter, anniversaries, childbirths, etc. Think of your customers as people and not as sources of income.
  5. SurpriseAn unexpected gift. This is perhaps the easiest emotion to evoke. Rewarding your customers with a random gift will build loyalty very quickly. This can not only kickstart a long, healthy business relationship but also can help to grow existing relationships. Nearly all people LOVE to receive gifts, especially unexpected gifts. It counts so much more when you surprise your customers when they don’t expect it. For example, while receiving Christmas or end of the year gifts might be welcomed by your clients, they are not necessarily that big of a surprise since many other companies are also giving gifts at that time of year. If you really want the leg up, surprise them with gifts on the anniversary of their first purchase with your company, their marriage anniversary, or some other significant event in their life.
  6. AmazementA feeling of great surprise or wonder. Amazement is a similar emotion to surprise, but it has been classified as a secondary emotion under surprise. Therefore, be sure to amaze your prospects with your promotional items. In order to amaze them, you’ll need to be different than your competitors. You can individually personalize promotional items with their name or you could do a little “research” on your client on social media and include their favorite quote or Bible verse. Show them you put thought behind their gift and they will be amazed.
  7. ReliefA feeling of reassurance and relaxation following release from anxiety or distress. Solving pain points for your clients will do more for promoting strong business relationships than anything else. Your customers want to be assured they will be taken care of by you and your company without having to excessively worry. Whenever you land a new client or sign a new deal, send a worthy promotional product worthy for that deal and let your new client know you are there for them. If they are nervous about deadlines, make it clear you will be on top it (and then stay on top of it). Maybe past companies didn’t do the job properly, so they are uneasy about this job going well. Learn from where their anxiety stems so you can address it. Other types of relief may come in the form in physical pain relief with useful products such as hot/cold packs. Others may be lip balms for chapped lips or lotions for dry or sunburned skin. These products can help physical relieve symptoms.
  8. Satisfaction Fulfillment of one’s wishes, expectations, or needs. In order to give your customers satisfaction, you must get to know them. Until you learn their needs and expectations, you can’t deliver satisfaction. In the beginning, you can cheat a little. Give chocolate. Most people love chocolate and it can satisfy that sweet tooth that many get in the afternoons. A gift box including Ghiradelli Hot Chocolate, Chocolate Squares, and a Leather Wrapped Thermos should do the trick.
  9. CheerfulnessThe state of being noticeably happy and optimistic. It can be really easy to cheer most people up. A simple, random act of kindness or a surprise gift can let people know they matter. Creating cheerfulness is what you are doing when you send gifts to your clients. Be sure to choose promotional products with which they will most likely connect. This goes back to knowing your customers. Put yourself in their shoes to think of the best types of giveaways for the most impact. Whether you opt for a sill promo such as a Hair Topped Pen or you go with a more thoughtful gift specific to your clients, a little cheer goes a long way.
  10. AttractionThe action or power of evoking interest, pleasure, or liking for someone or something. Ensuring attraction between your promotional products and your recipients is not too difficult as long as you take the time to know your audience. If your customer and prospect list is like most businesses, you have multiple segments with different likes and interests. Tech gifts for older generations may not be as popular as they would be for younger generations, etc. Segment your list according to men, women, and generations and think of gifts the majority of those segments would prefer. By doing this, you greatly increase the chances of attraction to that gift, followed by attraction to your company. This means the best course of action often involves buying at least two different gift options.

For reference, below you’ll find the chart of emotions identified by Shaver et al (2001).

Primary emotion Secondary emotion Tertiary emotions
Love Affection Adoration, affection, love, fondness, liking, attraction, caring, tenderness, compassion, sentimentality
Lust Arousal, desire, lust, passion, infatuation
Longing Longing
Joy Cheerfulness Amusement, bliss, cheerfulness, gaiety, glee, jolliness, joviality, joy, delight, enjoyment, gladness, happiness, jubilation, elation, satisfaction, ecstasy, euphoria
Zest Enthusiasm, zeal, zest, excitement, thrill, exhilaration
Contentment Contentment, pleasure
Pride Pride, triumph
Optimism Eagerness, hope, optimism
Enthrallment Enthrallment, rapture
Relief Relief
Surprise Surprise Amazement, surprise, astonishment
Anger Irritation Aggravation, irritation, agitation, annoyance, grouchiness, grumpiness
Exasperation Exasperation, frustration
Rage Anger, rage, outrage, fury, wrath, hostility, ferocity, bitterness, hate, loathing, scorn, spite, vengefulness, dislike, resentment
Disgust Disgust, revulsion, contempt
Envy Envy, jealousy
Torment Torment
Sadness Suffering Agony, suffering, hurt, anguish
Sadness Depression, despair, hopelessness, gloom, glumness, sadness, unhappiness, grief, sorrow, woe, misery, melancholy
Disappointment Dismay, disappointment, displeasure
Shame Guilt, shame, regret, remorse
Neglect Alienation, isolation, neglect, loneliness, rejection, homesickness, defeat, dejection, insecurity, embarrassment, humiliation, insult
Sympathy Pity, sympathy
Fear Horror Alarm, shock, fear, fright, horror, terror, panic, hysteria, mortification
Nervousness Anxiety, nervousness, tenseness, uneasiness, apprehension, worry, distress, dread

Related Articles
7 Types of Promotional Products Buyers
The Science Behind Promotional Products
Shortcuts Don’t Work For Promotional Products
Impulse Marketing
7 Steps to Ensure a Successful Promotional Products Campaign

-All definitions of emotions are from Google.

Related content