Go to print: Getting your marketing products to work for you

Go to print: Getting your marketing products to work for you
November 22, 2016 Madeleine Helme

Think about this: when was the last time you bought a pen?

It’s not much of a necessity anymore for a lot of us – pens always just seem to be lying around. We pick up free pens from events or in marketing promotions and we just keep hold of them. You never know when and where you might need a pen! You might find that you end up with a stockpile of pens with the names and logos of various different businesses on them.

Now think about your business. When it comes to promoting your brand and raising recognition and awareness of it, doesn’t this sound like the ideal situation? Your brand name and logo is in the houses, offices, or bags of your customers and potential customers, on an item being used on a regular, perhaps even daily, basis. Every time someone uses that item, they get a reminder of your brand and the products or services you provide.

This is the power of branded promotional products. By giving away free items that are useful to your customers, you can ensure that they’re not going to just throw them in the trash as soon as they receive them. A survey found that 87% of people claim to keep promotional products for more than a year. This means you get a great return on your investment, because these products keep marketing for you for a long period of time. Companies such as Vistaprint will print on a wide range of items for affordable prices, so you don’t need a huge marketing budget to use this strategy.

There is a wide variety of products you could use to promote your business, and it works for basically any type of business or organization, large and small. Beyond the trusty pen, consider the following branded products for your business.


What better to write on with a branded pen than branded stationery? Notepads, post-its, and diaries are a few things that people often need to hand. A company calendar is a good gift to give to your customers at the end of the year as it’s something they’ll hang in their home or office for the next 12 months.

USB sticks

USBs are really useful, so they provide a lot of value to your customers. This is especially a good idea if your business is tech-related. That way, the gift is relevant to your brand and what your customers are interested in.


This is another gift that provides a lot of value. Since they are larger, heavier and more expensive to buy than pens or paper, people are very unlikely to throw them away. You could also have branded mugs in your office, so any prospects or customers who come to meet with your team can drink from a branded mug.

Fridge magnets

You can have custom fridge magnets made with an image of your choice or your company name and logo. If someone receives a branded fridge magnet from you and decides to stick it on their fridge, they will see it every time they go to get food or a drink, so you get a lot of exposure.


Your brand name attached to someone’s keys is another great way of getting regular exposure for your brand. A branded trolley coin keyring is a particularly useful idea. People often don’t have the right coin to unlock the mechanism, so having one on your keys is really handy.


You can have t-shirts, hats, jackets, and more printed with your company name and logo. Having your staff wear branded clothing at events is good for exposure and also looks smart and professional. Branded clothing can be given out to customers too, but, depending on your brand, they might not want to wear a t-shirt with your logo blazoned across it. Subtler branding might work better in this case.


Reusable shopping bags and tote bags are a useful promotional item to give away. They can be used regularly, and other people will be exposed to your brand as they see others carrying them. Gyms or other health and fitness companies could give out sturdier promotional products like backpacks and duffle bags, so their clients can carry their gym gear with them and promote the brand whenever they go for a workout.

There are so many more ideas:

  • gyms could give away water bottles,
  • bars could give away bottle openers,
  • makeup bags from cosmetic companies,
  • personalized tags for pets’ collars from pet stores.

The tangibility of these promotional products gives them a kind of value you don’t get with digital marketing and promotion. As people touch, hold, and use your branded products, they are more likely to notice and remember your brand, compared to seeing an ad while they browse online. When it comes to the time when they need what you sell, they are more likely to think of you because you have remained at the front of their mind.

You can print your contact details on promotional products so it’s easy for people to get in touch. You can give branded products to your customers when they make a purchase, hand them out at events and exhibitions, and send them out in direct mail campaigns.

Investing in branded promotional products means you have marketing materials that continue to work for you on an ongoing basis. They can help you raise brand awareness, create greater brand recognition, and increase exposure to a wider audience.

After working in marketing for two years I decided to become a freelance writer. In my spare time I enjoy watching films and television and keeping fit through going to the gym and practising taekwondo.