Promotional Products Startup Guide For New Companies
If you have either bought or are starting a new business from the ground up, one of your most immediate needs is to establish your brand in the market place as soon as possible. Certainly one of the best and most cost effective ways to accomplish this is with the help of promotional products. However, I am not writing this article to convince you of the importance of using promotional products but rather to help you with the process of implementing this type of marketing approach. In this article, I will be discussing a kind of mental checklist that will be necessary to help make this process go much more smoothly for you. Keep in mind that I will be providing you a general rather than a comprehensive guide to the ordering process as with more than 850,000 promotional products and growing in our industry I could not in this small article cover all the necessary guidelines for ordering each product. Nevertheless, I will address some of the key considerations that will help you in the selection and ordering process for most promotional products.
One of the first areas in this process you must address is to come up with a budget. Your thinking here should be first to come up with a total budget and then to break that total budget into segments which should include a price range for each promotional product you want to order. Don’t forget to compensate for costs other than the actual product in your budget such as shipping, taxes, and any fulfillment costs that might be incurred in delivering or packaging the promotional item. As part of this budgetary process you will want to decide on how many different types of promotional items you will want to purchase. Once you have decided on how many promotional products you will be using in your marketing effort, you will need to figure out how many of each individual item you will want to order. This really then becomes more of a mathematical function of how many promotional items you will be ordering and how much you have budgeted for the entire promotional product program.
With the financial aspect of the promotional product program figured out your thought process should move to the marketing aspects so you can then zero in on the precise products that will accomplish your branding mission. This is where you need to begin to ask yourself some important questions. It is through the questioning process that you will define your entire approach to getting the appropriate and most effective promotional product and still stay within your budget. Questions such as: who will you be targeting with these promotional products? What is the message and impression you want the product to convey to the person receiving it? Where will the promotional product be given out? Although I can think of many more questions that I as a professional would ask to better define your goals lets limit it to these three very important questions for now. Let’s briefly discuss the first question: who will the products be given to? Actually this question can best be answered by asking and answering a series of other questions like: will the products be given to current customers or prospects? Will the products be given to men, women or children? What position does the recipient hold in an organization? These are just a few questions you will need to ask yourself in defining your target and thus determining an appropriate and effective promotional product. With regards to the second major question I presented concerning the message and impression you want to convey to your customer, you will need to examine why you are giving the promotional product out in the first place. Do you want to give the promotional product out to create awareness of a new product or service your company is introducing? Perhaps, you want to use it to directly boost sales and give it as a gift with purchase which we call a premium in the industry. There are many ways to help your business grow with the help of promotional products, in fact, to many to mention here in this article. But the way to find out how you can best use them is by questioning and understanding your own company’s needs. Finally, the last major question involves the logistics and the distribution of the promotional products. For example, where will the promotional products be given out? Will your sales people be giving out the promotional product during sales calls or maybe at a tradeshow? Maybe your company will be hosting a seminar and hand some products out there. Still another possibility would involve mailing out products to customers such as gifts acknowledging their support and creating good will and loyalty to your company and brand. However you choose to get the product to your marketing target distribution and logistics should be an important consideration in your decision to purchase certain promotional products.
Having touched on the marketing aspect of choosing to promote your brand with promotional products, it is now time to turn your attention to what essentially is the nuts and bolts part of the actual ordering process. This part of your marketing efforts involves specific choices that you will have to make regarding each product most of which have their own unique characteristics. Once you actually decide on a promotional product, things like size, color, specific features, and options available for that product should be thought out. You will then need to decide how you want to customize the product. Things like the number of ink colors you will want to imprint on an item, how many sides on a product will be imprinted and in the case of an embroidered product the size and location of the embroidery will come into play. Finally,you will need to make sure that you have your artwork done by a graphics professional who can put it in the proper format to submit for actual production. Although there are many products and possibilities for the creative and effective use of promotional products, with a little thought on your part the basic guidelines I have outlined in this article will provide you with a good starting agenda. Of course, a top professional promotional product supplier with extensive experience and the technology necessary can help and fill in the important missing gaps and take you the rest of the way to successfully completing your marketing mission.
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