Destroying Your Promotional Products Campaign – A Step-by-Step Guide

A Step-by-Step Guide To Destroying Your Promotional Products Campaign

Destroying Your Promotional Products Campaign – A Step-by-Step Guide

If you’ve handled your fair share of advertising campaigns then you know that sometimes promotions are a success and sometimes they fail. In fact, sometimes they bomb. The problem is that you’re probably so caught up in your next campaign that you don’t have time to analyze why your campaign took a dive or to put plans in place to avoid pitfalls in the future.

So, we’ve put a guide together, but it’s not your typical guide. We’re not going to show you the steps you need to take to ensure your promotional products campaign succeeds. We’re going to show you how to destroy it. In other words, you’re going to see just how bad things can get so that you can take note and avoid these deadly marketing sins in the future.

1. Failure to Plan and No Clear Goals

Before you order or produce a single promotional item, think about your goals. Is your goal to drive traffic to your website or promote a product? Do you have a specific number of leads you’d like to reach? What volume of traffic or sales are you targeting?

Promotional products can boost excitement for sure, but they should also be chosen, ordered, and distributed with clear goals in mind. By defining your expectations from the start, you’ll be in a good position to analyze the success of your campaign.

2. Budget is Too Small

You can’t blow your entire budget on one campaign, but if you don’t allocate enough budget to a campaign, you could be wasting your money. The smarter companies are actually listing promotional items as a line item for their annual budget. These progressive and fast-growing companies understand how effective promos can be if utilized properly. Budgeting is part of the planning process, so allow yourself enough money to buy the right products otherwise #3 may happen.

3. Choosing Cheap and Inferior Products

There are thousands of companies offering uber-cheap promotional products in the marketplace. You could go online right now and find hundreds of suppliers within seconds. However, speed of search is one thing, quality is quite another. When your promotional items are often the first touchpoint for your brand, you’ll want that first impression to be a good one. A USB stick is great, but if it fails to be detected or breaks on first use, your brand kudos will instantly plummet, crumbling your chances of landing that prospect as a paying client.

4. Giving the Wrong Products to the Wrong Person

One of the biggest mistakes you can make with your promotional products is to choose products you would like rather than what your target audience would want. Big mistake. Failing to fit the product to the person will leave recipients baffled or bemused and your products gathering dust in a drawer. Choose products for your demographic that they will enjoy, use or share with others. For example, a handy tote or LED flashlight is likely to win over senior citizens, whereas techy products are likely to be a hit with millennials. See tips about choosing the right promotional products for your clients.

5. No Distribution Channels

So, you order 2,000 promotional calendars at the start of the year to distribute to leads and customers. The only problem is you have no distribution channels mapped out. Come May, you’ve still got 1,600 calendars gathering dust, and their useful life is expiring fast! The dumpster outside your building is not a customer. When you’ve invested time, effort, and money into promotional items, you need effective channels that will help you to shift high volumes in the most meaningful ways. Events, postal campaigns, and social media giveaways are all ways to get your promotional products out there, but you need to plan ahead. Distribution is a part of the planning phase.

6. Ineffective or Incorrect Information

People love promotional products. Free products are important to them, but what matters to you is that you get the right exposure and conversion rates through your promotional products campaign. For this reason, it’s important to ensure your promotional items carry the right message. This could be in the form of your logo or slogan, or you might want to be more direct with a sales message. You usually only have a small amount of space to work with on promotional products, so this space has to be used wisely. Most importantly, before printing, make sure all information is factually and grammatically correct. One wrong digit in your phone number could kill your campaign instantly.

7. Failing to Follow Up With Recipients

Giveaways are great, but what’s really in it for you? Don’t just rely on a free gift to win over prospects. If you fail to follow up with the recipients of your promotional items, you’ve potentially lost them for good.

One effective way to deepen your conversations with leads is to create tiers of promotional products. For example, you could give a promotional pen to everybody who stops by your exhibition booth, but if people want to receive a bigger ticket item, they need to provide you with as many personal details as possible. It’s a win-win situation — they get a better product and you get valuable data that you can use to target them further when you get back to the office.

Final Thoughts

Promotional products are so much more than just branding tools. They are one of the most effective and creative ways you can enhance your sales and marketing strategies. When it comes to planning your next promotional product order, plan with your target audience in mind, choose quality products, and take the time to understand your goals. In doing so, you can boost your ROI and increase your leads and sales. For the best results, make sure you choose a promotional products distributor with the right qualifications to serve your needs.

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Patrick Black
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Patrick Black, MAS, is the founder of Perfectimprints.com and has been in the promotional products industry helping businesses and organizations since 1999. When not geeking out over the newest and greatest promotional items, you can find him paddleboarding at the beach or hanging out by the pool with his wife, three kids, and his basset hound in Fort Walton Beach, FL.