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Building Brand’s on Valentine’s Day

Let’s Share the (Brand) Love!

In honor of Valentine’s Day and Brand Love Week, we wanted to share a bit about our passion for promos and why we do what we do. We are people who love promos and are inspired by the creativity in our industry!  Join us in sharing your stories this week using the hashtag #BrandLoveWeek.

Brand Love

What’s your favorite brand? Take a moment and really think about it before answering.

Did Apple or Disney come to mind?  Or maybe you went for the inspiring fan favorite Nike?  When you think about your favorite brands, do you ever wonder how they earned your business?  For many, the overall vibe and personality a brand exudes is just as important as the product or service they are selling.  For example, Apple makes electronics that are similar to Samsung and Sony, but it is their sleek designs and clever marketing that make them a fan favorite. (Ever see their epic 1984-esk commercial that inspired a generation to “think different”?)

Others choose a brand based on their mission statements and business choices.  For example, companies like TOMS and Warby Parker donate on your behalf to someone in need with every purchase, earning them the business of millions of devoted customers.

No matter the reason why you chose the brand that you did, one thing rings true.  There was a moment that solidified your loyalty… it’s what we at Boundless call a Brand Love moment, and it is the holy grail in Marketing.

So how can your brand connect with customers and create lasting Brand Love?  The good news is that you don’t need to shell out millions to an ad agency or create an epic Super Bowl commercial to win fans over.

When it comes to Brand Love, there is no other advertising medium that gets the job done as effectively as a branded product.  Think about it for a second, would you rather sit and watch an advertisement before your favorite music video on YouTube, or receive a free branded product that is useful and trendy?  It’s a no brainer.

Not only are branded products well-received, but they are also cost-effective and memorable.  On average promo products cost less than one cent per impression, and have an 85% brand recall rate with customers!  And to put a cherry on top of this promo sundae, a product like a tote or a sweatshirt with your logo on it essentially becomes a walking billboard for your brand.  So you’ve got a product that keeps earning impressions long after you gave it away, and a customer that is advocating for your brand simply by using or wearing the product.

inforgraphic

But, to truly create Brand Love with your customers you can’t just hand out pens at your booth and expect for the sparks to fly.  You need to be creative and thoughtful in your approach and give away branded merchandise this is the right mix of clever and useful and truly embodies the spirit of your brand.

Take the Sprouts swag box below as an example.  Sprouts is all about sustainability and organic produce, so we wanted their promotions to reflect these values.  The kit included a plantable pencil, a journal made completely from apples, and some playful custom socks with avocados.  The wood crate packaging completed the look and really made it a #BrandLove worthy giveaway. You should strive for campaigns like this that not only put your brand front and center, but also highlight your company values.

Sprouts box

So, how do you put the power of promotions to use, and what are some instances where they are effective?

Although they do make great giveaways, there are also tons of other ways you can use branded products to meet your marketing goals.  Internally think incentive programs, uniforms, corporate gifts, and new hire kits!  When you give your employees branded products it makes them feel like part of the team and turns them into brand ambassadors and advocates.  And considering that companies with engaged employees outperform those without by up to 202% (MSL Group), adding promotional products to your marketing mix is a no brainer.

Externally, promotional products are also a great way to stay top of mind with both existing and potential customers and can be used as event giveaways, mailers, and can even be included as a gift with purchase to drive sales.  Whether you are trying to generate leads, or retain current customers, branded products are going to be an effective and budget friendly touch point with fans of your brand.

I truly believe in Brand Love and the power of promotions and am inspired by the possibilities and creativity in our industry.  Every year on Brand Love Week we here at Boundless like to take a moment to celebrate the brands that inspire us and those moments that solidified the love.  Because we all have that old college sweatshirt we can’t bear to part with, or that durable branded grocery tote that somehow never breaks despite all the trips to the store we’ve taken. If your brand is lucky enough to make it onto a fave product, your customer is going to remember you for months and years to come.  So from us to you, Happy #BrandLoveWeek! And cheers to the creativity and brand love moments yet to come!

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Posted in advertising, Blogs, Branding, Entrepreneur, Events, Holiday, Marketing, Promotional Products, Sales, small business, Trade Shows, Uncategorized

Retail Best Sellers (You Didn’t Know You Could Brand!)

The best branded giveaways are ones that are useful and become integrated into your customer’s and employee’s routines.  Whether that be a travel product they can’t imagine going on a trip without, or a favorite fleece blanket they love to snuggle up with during their Netflix binges.  We all have our favorite go-to products we can’t live without. And the emotional connection people make with their favorite products creates an opportunity for your brand to turn customers into fans.

So how can you give branded products that will not only be kept but loved?  We’re here to help!

We turned to the retail sector and explored bestseller lists from retail giants like Amazon and Target.  Lo and behold, a ton of awesome and trendy products that your customers are searching for and buying are products that are available to brand.  With these retail trends in mind, we created an ideabook for you that takes the guesswork out of promotional products.  See some of our favorites from the best seller’s list below!

Tech & Travel

Tech and Travel

  1. iLuv Wireless Speaker with Amazon ALEXA | Play music, ask questions and more with this smart speaker!
  2. FUJIFILM Instax Mini 8 | Enable your audience to capture those life moments with this throwback camera.
  3. Magnetic Metal Phone Mount | For hands-free phone usage in the car.
  4. PocketCloud | A media hub to free up valuable space on your customer’s phone.

Home & Kitchen

home and kitchen

  1. Marble & Bamboo Coaster Set | Marble and bamboo combine for a trendy home piece your customers will want to show off.
  2. Cotton Zipper Pouch | Minimalism is trending, making this pouch a winner from the retail sector.
  3. Electronic Essential Oil Diffuser | Help your customers unwind with this top seller on Amazon.
  4. Cork Base Ceramic Mug | Trendy and useful, make your brand a part of your customer’s morning routine.

Games & Toys

  1. Hair Chalk | Fun colors and unicorn hair is trendy, but it doesn’t have to be permanent with this popular pick.
  2. Fidget Spinner | The breakout hit of 2017, this product will gain you some serious traction with your fans.
  3. Rubik’s Cube | This throwback game will give your customers a blast from the past.
  4. Fidget Cube | Keep idle hands busy with this fidget favorite.

Sports & Outdoors

  1. YETI Rambler | This infamous insulated tumbler offers the ultimate co-branding opportunity for your brand.
  2. IGLOO Cooler | For the outdoorsman or casual camper alike, soft-sided coolers are all the rage.
  3. Swiss Army Knife | This trusted multi-purpose tool is a fan favorite.
  4. Shaker Bottle | This mixer is perfect for your healthy and sporty customer and a favorite on holiday wish lists.

No matter your brand or budget, there is a perfect promotion to engage your customers and create Brand Love moments. Check out all of our picks here, or contact us to talk through your promotional strategy!

Posted in advertising, Blogs, Branding, Entrepreneur, Marketing, Promotional Products, small business, Trade Shows

Tipping the Scale – How Promotional Products Compete in a New Era of Advertising (*Reference: PPAI.Org)

How Promotional Products Compete in a New Era of Advertising 

Promotional products US Impressions

Excerpts from the article:

Earlier this year, PaigeFair reported that mobile ad-blocking software has grown to an estimated 380 million users and 236 million active desktop devices, indicating “interruption” as the leading reason for consumer use. PaigeFair also reported a staggering 74 percent of consumers will abandon websites that require them to disable their ad-blocker software...Promotional products not only allow brand messages to effectively reach their intended audience, they also spread the
word to anyone who sees the product displayed, used or shared. Promotional
products are used daily, and 83 percent of consumers use them more than once brands to engage with consumers without forcing unsolicited advertising. The race to win the consumer path to purchase is contingent on consumers being able to actually remember the brand at the point of purchase. If they can’t recall a brand, they are less likely to
buy the brand. 

Moumita Das, author, is
research coordinator at PPAI.

Posted in advertising, Branding, Entrepreneur, Marketing, Millenials, Promotional Products, small business

SXSW Explores Promotional Products

Source: PPAI Publications

Now in its 20th year, Austin, Texas-based South by Southwest (SXSW) has grown from a regional music festival to a 10-day conglomeration of festivals and conferences tackling film, music, advertising and marketing, interactive media and more. Currently in the middle of its March 10-17 run, the SXSW 2017’s Brands & Marketing track, part of SXSW Interactive, explores native advertising, brand storytelling and other topics relevant to promotional products industry practitioners.

SXSW offers attendees dozens of sessions to mix and match a program that suits their needs. Here are a sampling for promotional products professionals wanting to explore the cutting edge:

“Can I Order a Drink Via My T-shirt Yet?” explores digital connectivity and the data and information it can generate about consumers, how this trend will affect buying habits and routines, and what consumers will expect from the brands they engage with.

Automated assistants—software that can perform tasks or services based on user input, location awareness and online access—have the potential to completely change how consumers interact with brands, and the session “The Automated Assistant Revolution” looks at the latest developments in the technology and how its brands can apply it to their salesforce.

In “Bespoke, the New Mass Production. A Fender Hit,” panelists delve into the intersection of new production technology and consumers’ demand for individualized products, and how companies can implement large-scale manufacturing of customized products. Highlighted in the session is the story of guitar maker Fender, where customization has helped it grow its brand and profits.

Imagery can define a brand. The panelists participating in “Contemporary Curation: How Imagery Shapes a Brand” highlighted that a brand’s story, which creates a personal relationship between a business and its customers, is told in part through imagery, and how a brand’s visual identity can strengthen or confuse its story.

Posted in Branding, Events, Promotional Products, Trade Shows

2017 Tradeshow Survival Guide

Happy Friday,

I had the opportunity of contributing a few best practices regarding trade-shows – knowing that we’re entering the trade show season right now and figuring out how to prepare, which exhibitors to see and who to set up appointments with so we get the most from our investment and the show – this article will be a helpful resource to you throughout the 2017 trade show season.

So, sit back where ever you are and absorb the terrific ideas in this article 

If you’d like to connect with me directly about any of the information shared in this article, please email me and I’ll respond and schedule some time with you.

The image is showing you how the @mandalaybay uses their #brandedmerchandise – items sourced at a recent trade show and then presented to the #hotel for them to create a memorable experience for their guests!

Have a restful weekend and a prosperous trade show season!

Chriswpid-wp-1421079733894.jpeg

Posted in advertising, Branding, Entrepreneur, Events, Marketing, Podcast, Promotional Products, Real Estate, Sales, small business, Trade Shows

Promotional Products’ Impact on Brand/Company Image

Promotional Products are effective in reaching and influencing people – An experiment conducted by Georgia Southern University show that recipients of promotional products have a significantly more positive image of a company than consumers who do not receive promotional products.

Promotional products can be used alone or integrated with other media, there are virtually limitless ways to use them. Popular programs cited most often by promotional consultants are business gifts, employee relations, orientation programs, corporate communications, and at tradeshows to generate booth traffic.

Tradeshows for example – including a promotional product with a pre-show mailing or an offer of a promotional product increases the likelihood of an attendee stopping by a tradeshow booth.

Posted in advertising, Branding, Entrepreneur, Events, Marketing, Podcast, Sales, small business

Keep on and SWAG on! – Dan Pigott Podcast from PromoKitchen

Today, i’d like to introduce PromoKitchen – 

PromoKitchen is an all-volunteer, 501c3 non-profit organization led by professionals in the $20 billion dollar promotional products industry.  Our story began in January 2011: a group of young promotional products professionals banded together to create a new voice for the industry. PK (as industry reps like to call it – so now, you’re in the know) represents a cross section of the industry: suppliers, distributors and service providers, Americans and Canadians, men and women, salespeople and business owners, young and the young at heart. They believe that best practice sharing is a good thing for an industry that is going through rapid change. We also believe in the power of community and how this industry can improve by establishing stronger connections between us all.

Here’s a podcast of my friend and industry peer Dan Pigott who shares with us the vantage point of the multi-line rep. Multi-lines have helped establish the sales foundation for this industry – The Promotional Products Industry!

Listen, Learn, and Elevate your knowledge. When done please let me know what you think and I’ll be glad to pass along your comments to the PK Chefs.

Dan Pigott – Promotional Products Multi Line Rep Podcast