Top 10 Promotional Products Trends for 2021

To our fellow marketers, business owners, professionals-

We made it through 2020. Through hard work, chaotic days, and stressful evenings. But, together. They say it takes a village to raise a family. We are here to tell you- it takes a village to build a successful business. I’m sure many of you all faced similar challenges this year, and like us, you likely look forward to the plans and promise of 2021. 

Our fellow small businesses- local and across the nation- banded together, and we cannot thank you all enough for the support we have received. We only hope we can share that support back with you in the coming year. To help you plan your promotional efforts for this year- we have prepared this list of top 10 trends for promotional products & recommendations within each category. 

If you need help with certain campaigns or reaching your employees or clients via dropshipping, fill out the contact form on our website & one of our account managers will be in touch shortly.

1. Exercise Items

Promotional Exercise BandsSo quarantine wasn’t exactly great for our physical shape, but our 2021 resolutions are getting us back on track! I’m sure many of your clients & employees are also working on their resolutions and would appreciate supplies to help them get in shape. 

Every year, January is a great month for exercise promo items, but this year is going to be different. This year- the resolutions stick around & the home workouts will continue well past even when quarantines (hopefully) end! To effectively use exercise promos, you want to ensure you pick items that are desirable and quality so that recipients will keep them long-term. 

Some of our favorite exercise promotional items are exercise bands, yoga mats, and jump ropes. 

Exercise bands are great promotional items for gyms, physical therapists, health brands, and employers promoting health for insurance purposes. While there are many different types, styles, and strengths of bands, we’ve tried to simplify the buying process in our Guide to Exercise Bands. 

Yoga mats & sets are great items to send to employees or clients who may be working from home. As many gyms have converted to hosting online classes, yoga mats can be a wonderful mailer to send to your annual membership clients. 

Or, if you’re hosting socially distant classes, we recommend having yoga mats that allow members to easily communicate their comfort level with distancing. If someone wants to heavily distance themselves with no physical contact, they can use a red mat. If the client doesn’t mind being near others but does not appreciate instructors being within 6 feet, they can use a yellow mat. If your client is comfortable with close proximity and physical contact with masks, a green mat can be used. Of course, these colors can be adjusted for your branding and we can help you design flyers to hang on class doors to explain the process to your clients. 

Jump ropes are a great option for mailers, due to their size and weight. They are the perfect fitness item for all ages, as they are used in a variety of exercise classes and workouts. For more inspiration on how to best use promotional fitness items, check out our blog on building brand awareness with gym equipment.

2. Organizational Items 

Whether we like it or not, a lot of our work-from-home culture is continuing. While we may be going back to the office, we are still hosting fewer in-person meetings and sometimes spend our afternoons in home offices. With that said, the organization has become paramount. 

Now that all of our meetings happen over video conference, we can no longer simply close the office door behind us and hide our messy desk. Keep your employees put together with these desk organization products. 

Whether your team has always been traveling, or you’re adjusting to rotating office spaces, make sure your employees never forget the things they need. Just because you spend every other day at home doesn’t excuse forgetting a computer charger or important document, right? Make the travel easier for your team, so that productivity and efficiency don’t suffer. We recommend looking at these promotional briefcases and laptop backpacks.

3. Kitchen Items & Charcuterie

With restaurants and bars still at lowered capacities in many states, more people are enjoying (or trying to enjoy) cooking at home. With that in mind, kitchen promotional products are bound to be a hit this year! With the increased use of kitchen products, the cost per impression of these promotional items has decreased significantly in the past year. 

When choosing kitchen promotional products, we recommend that you keep in mind your target market. If marketing to families with young children we suggest using plastic or steel tumblers

If you’re looking to reach an adult crowd, particularly those who may still be hosting small gatherings, we recommend looking into charcuterie and wood cutting boards. These boards are gaining popularity quickly. Not sure what to include in a charcuterie board? Check out this article from Food Network about preparing a charcuterie board. Sending a small cookbook about appetizers and cocktails could be a great item to pair with this mailer. We are happy to help you find the exact book you need, just reach out to us.  

If you’re looking to promote small or virtual gatherings within your company, we recommend sending a mailer of food or drink items, as well as a kitchen promotional product. This can encourage virtual happy hours or small lunch gatherings of employees. 

4. Bluetooth Speakers & Headphones

The dog is barking, there’s a kid crying, there’s a school teacher on the computer that’s now taking up the dining room table and you’re hosting a virtual meeting at your kitchen counter. We’ve all been there. On the upside, the coffee maker is nearby! 

But what your team needs to stay productive in these situations is quality, noise-canceling headphones. By sending your team the supplies they need to stay productive, you not only decrease distractions, but you make staying productive that much easier for your team. 

If you’re worried about mailing headphones because of size, we also recommend noise-canceling earbuds.

5. Water Bottles 

While 2020 may be behind us, unfortunately, Coronavirus is not yet. With many people battling normal colds, the flu, and coronavirus, health is a primary concern for lots of people. As an employer, keeping your employees healthy is an important initiative. Show your employees you care with a promotional water bottle. 

If you’re looking for a trade show giveaway or an item to give to students, this is the perfect health-conscious item that is sure to stay useful well after Covid. 

There are many different options and price ranges of custom water bottles– including budget bottles and stainless steel bottles. 

6. Athleisure 

Athleisure is something that, as companies, we should embrace… Says the business that functions primarily in the eCommerce industry. 

But truly, we believe that as a company, especially in these changing times, embracing a little comfort during working hours. While your joggers may not be appropriate for the office, we support companies using comfortable promotional t-shirts and outerwear

For those in an industry that enables it- we are all about promotional joggers & sweatpants. If your industry doesn’t allow for that, then consider comfortable polo shirts and workwear

7. Journals 

Somehow, journals end up on our top product lists almost every year. These are a product that people consistently use and keep for months. Journals are a great annual product to give out to clients, recruits, employees, and potential clients. They can become a staple product that people look forward to receiving year after year. 

Not to mention, journals are a great value for your investment. Usually, people keep them on their desk long term, meaning your logo gets seen multiple times per day. And, when they take that journal to a meeting, everyone along the halls and in that meeting will see the logo on that high-quality journal. 

8. Portable Chargers (Power Banks)

With vaccinations on the horizon, life on-the-go will soon be resuming (or at least, we hope it will). Sales teams will be back out and about. Networking events will resume. Your office team will be able to get back to larger in-person meetings. Unfortunately, being back to normal work conditions doesn’t mean we are spending more time away from our phones– just the chargers.

And with that comes the need for portable phone chargers once again. Make sure your team is equipped with the tools they need to maintain their success as life begins to speed up again. 

9. Healthcare items

This year, we have all taken time to focus on ourselves. For some of us, that looked like strict quarantine for months. For others, it looked like self-protection and self-care while working in essential functions. 

Your employees and clients are focused on taking care of themselves, as we’ve seen this societal shift over the last few months. These wellness and safety products are sure to support your clients’ and employees’ new efforts. 

10. Personal Safety Items/Hand Sanitizer

As much as we are looking forward to the days when coronavirus is behind us, it is likely to have lasting effects on the way we consider our health. While we will be past the days of being required to wear a mask, we may never be past the day where you immediately put on hand sanitizer after walking out of the grocery store. 

While we hate that we know it, we can’t unlearn all of the places bacteria were hiding from us. I don’t think we can ever put our phones to our faces again. So, with that, make sure you and your team maintain their health for years to come with these personal safety items and hand sanitizer.

Top 10 Trends for 2019

Below you’ll find the top 10 trends we noticed, with many of the trends paralleling with retail trends. These 10 trending promos will give you a leg up over your competition, keeping you more relevant in the tough world of marketing your business.

Straws

Straws are among the biggest selling promos right now thanks to this fast-growing trend started by the city of Seattle when they banned plastic straws. D.C. quickly followed and also banned plastic straws. Now, many cities and corporations are working toward eliminating plastic straws due to the negative impact on our environment.

This led to the explosion of the paper straws, stainless steel straws, and silicon straws. These promotional straws are great for branding since straws have become a hot topic of discussion. This gets lots of attention for your brand.

Choose from reusable branded straws such as the silicone straws or the premium stainless steel straws. You can opt for the straight stainless steel straws, the bent stainless steel straws, or the convenient foldable stainless steel straws which all can be branded with your logo. For restaurants, the custom paper straws are the best bet since the price point is so low allowing you to still be profitable when selling drinks.

Your company doesn’t have to wait for legislation to help protect our environment. By voluntarily eliminating plastic straws from your business, you’ll show the world that you care, thereby, creating a loyal customer base who appreciates your stance.

Eco-Friendly Products

]Paper straws aren’t the only eco-friendly promotional items that are hot; they just happen to be at the forefront of the news due to recent bans on plastic straws. Many other promotional items are focused on being made with recycled and renewable materials making them eco-friendly.

These are great purchases to show your customer base that your company is serious about protecting our environment. Among our favorite new eco-friendly products this year are the Washable Kraft Paper Bags. These heavy-duty paper bags are reusable many times and can be washed to remove any type of dirt or bacteria from inside or outside the bags while leaving your branding intact on the side of the bags.

Marble Pattern

The marble pattern is beginning to show up everywhere in retail products such as phone cases, handbags, and even watch bands for your Apple Watch.

The marble pattern is also trending within the promotional products world with items such as journals, bags, pens, water bottles, tumblers, phone wallets, and more!

You can see all of the marble pattern promotional items here.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row css_animation=”” row_type=”row” use_row_as_full_screen_section=”no” type=”full_width” angled_section=”no” text_align=”left” background_image_as_pattern=”without_pattern”][vc_column][vc_column_text]

Cork

[/vc_column_text][vc_single_image image=”17318″ img_size=”full” alignment=”center” onclick=”custom_link” qode_css_animation=”” link=”https://www.perfectimprints.com/custom-promos/21160/Cork-Promotional-Products.html”][vc_empty_space][vc_column_text]Cork is hot right now! Whether you go with a product made completely from cork or you opt for one with cork accents, these are extremely popular!

A major benefit of cork is that it is extremely eco-friendly. Cork is harvested from the bark of cork oak trees, meaning you don’t have to chop down the trees to harvest it. Since the bark grows back quickly, there is little to no negative impact on the environment! You are supporting eco-friendly practices while at the same time promoting your brand.

Some of the most popular cork promos include tote bags, coffee mugs, tumblers, journals, and even hats!

Check out all of the cork promotional products to find your favorite![/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row css_animation=”” row_type=”row” use_row_as_full_screen_section=”no” type=”full_width” angled_section=”no” text_align=”left” background_image_as_pattern=”without_pattern”][vc_column][vc_column_text]

Stickers

[/vc_column_text][vc_single_image image=”17345″ img_size=”full” alignment=”center” qode_css_animation=””][vc_empty_space][vc_column_text]Stickers have been hot for some time yet, especially with the younger decorations. From decorating school binders to stainless steel water bottles and laptops, stickers representing a favorite brand, organizations, funny sayings are more popular than ever.

Now it’s easier than ever than get stickers to promote your brand, with the most popular being die-cut stickers which are cut to a unique shape. Contact us today for pricing for your full-color custom stickers.

Wireless Phone Chargers

Wireless phone chargers (also known as Qi Chargers) are phone chargers that charge your phone by simply laying your phone on top of the charging pad. The base unit does have to plug into a power source, but no wire is required between the charger and your phone. The allows you to pick up your phone as needed without detaching a charging cable.

Why are wireless phone chargers so hot? Well, every major phone released within the last few years has been Qi-ready.

This technology is not new though. Rechargeable toothbrushes (from Oral-B) have been using this type of charging capability since the early 1990s. Also, Wii remotes used this same type of inductive charging with their charging stations. It has only become a new standard with mobile phones within the last few years.

Wireless charging is convenient because you can easily begin charging your phone by setting it on the pad, but it is slower than a corded method (by about 15%). However, if charging overnight or if you just want to top off your phone battery, wireless phone chargers are awesome!

Our favorite wireless charger is the Boltron Wireless Charging Pad because it allows 3 devices to charge wireless at the same time and 2 additional devices can be charged by USB cables. Additionally, the top surface is printed in full-color (did we mention the minimum quantity to order is only one)? See all of our wireless chargers here.

Leather

When shopping for custom decorated leather goods, you’ll find plenty of knockoff varieties. Whether they call them “leather-like,” “faux leather,” “vegan leather,” “PU leather,” or whatever dressed-up term used, nothing compares to genuine leather.

Leather goods have become very popular due to the demand by consumers for durable and high-quality goods. Leather looks better with age, which can’t be said by any other material.

Items such as key straps, koozies, luggage tags, and cord organizers are among some of the popular leather items which are most affordable. As budget allows, other popular leather items priced in the mid-range include wallets, passport holders, and journals. When budget isn’t a big factor for those premium corporate gifts, leather bags are the most popular items to woo your gift recipients.

Campfire Mugs

Campfire mugs have been popular for the past year and continue to be a hot item. In fact, most manufacturers haven’t been able to keep up with demands. Many new suppliers are offering campfire mugs for 2019 which should help offset the inventory issues from last year.

Whether you are hosting an indoor or out, these retro mugs offer a feeling of nostalgia for many making these great giveaways for your brand.

You can see all of the campfire mugs here.

Canvas Backpacks

Canvas backpacks are wildly popular. I’m not talking about the cheap variety. I’m referring to high-quality canvas backpacks with a branded leather patch or metal nameplate.

If you are carrying around a bag with your laptop and books inside, you might as well carry them in style.

Check out the incredible backpack options here.

Sherpa Jackets & Vests

Sherpa jackets and vests are in practically every retail store there is. Their popularity has grown tremendously this year, and the trend will most likely carry into the Winter season for the end of the year as well.

Whether you choose a zip-up jacket, pullover, or vest, you’ll be giving out fashionable wearables for this year.

Check out the sherpa jackets options here.

Other Hot Items

There are quite a few promotional items that are still hot from last year. Items such as custom sock and any type of stainless steel drinkware are blazing hot still. These are items that will become staples, so we don’t feel like they are just a trend anymore.

You can shop all of our custom socks here and our vacuum insulated stainless steel tumblers here. For a vacuum insulated stainless steel water bottle, click here.