The 10 essential criteria to consider before you order your business promotional merchandise.
The simplest way to filter your product search is of course the cost you pay for it. There is a product to suit any budget, so business promotional items can be used by companies of any size, quite literally with any budget.
Cost of product vs Cost as value over life of product.
Tread carefully - any judgement of the true cost should always go hand in hand with consideration of “Durability” of the product and how long its' lifecycle is. A product that is durable and likely to last for 12 months like a drink bottle or quality notebook that may cost $15, compares favourably to a $3 item that has a lifecycle of 2 - 4 weeks.
It’s the name of the game - by definition anything you add your logo to becomes part of your brand building story. The feelings associated with the promotional items you select will reflect directly on your brand in both positive and negative ways. Select a product that has synergy with your brand or campaign goals.
Example 1: Eco Friendly products align your brand with being earth friendly and a social citizen that supports sustainability.
Example 2: Selecting products that support an active lifestyle, reflects your brand image as aligned with promotion of healthy and active lifestyles.
In reverse, selecting products that are low quality, non sustainable, tacky or considered more a "fad" can damage your brand, or make it end up in the garbage bin.
How long is the lifecycle of your product and does it align and contribute with the goals of your long term marketing plans?
How does the product age over time?
A short lifecycle product is attractive to even the largest and biggest brands and companies, if it suits the goals of the marketing campaign. For example many companies wanting awareness for a new product or campaign will use a disposable “giveaway” product to reach large audiences like at a sporting event.
For many small business, with limited budgets, who may produce maybe less than a few promotional campaigns a year to promote their business to their clients, the issue of product lifecycle and durability is a major consideration.
“More Bang for you Buck”
The Longer lifecycle products in general are highly desirable, as they reduce the “overall” cost over time, in theory making a better ROI ( Return on Investment) more likely, essentially giving your brand more time in the eye of your target market.
Service based Companies
Longer lifecycle products that score high on durability are attractive to service based business where clients contact your company a few times a year to make purchases as it enhances your chances of being front of mind when the need for your services arise, think plumbers, electricians and pest controllers, but also B2B services companies in many industries that sell niche or specialised services.
Long Lifecycle products include Stainless Steel Drink Bottles, Quality Pens, Notebooks, Umbrellas, Chairs, Backpacks.
When we pick gifts for our loved ones or co-workers, generally we will pick gifts we think they will like and will actually use. Of course you say! Well that is no different to promotional products , which are exactly the same thing - a Gift to your clients, prospect or employees.
Note - 77% of Consumers selected “Usefulness” as the number 1 reason to keep a promotional item.
Health & Safety, Computer & Tech Products like Custom USB Drives, Writing Instruments and Notebooks are ranked as the “most useful”
( Source https://www.ppai.org/ )
5. Perceived Value
So we discussed “Cost” above and its very simple to judge a product by what it costs you, but here we will discuss what we all associate the “price” of a particular product based on our past experience and society norms. This is called perceived value, as it has no direct relevance to what the product actually costs you, but the “value” certain products, or attributes of a product (like the material its made from) have in the marketplace or in peoples value system.
Should my products perceived value always be High?
Not at all, as long as there is not a “mismatch” between the goals of the campaign, your own brands positioning and the perceived value of the product you pick, so for this reason you should always be aware how the product you select rates on this matrix. Products with short lifecycles that are giveaways or disposable products that are “used once” don’t require a high perceived value.
Common indicators of High Perceived Value products:
The easiest way to create a high perceived value is to use products that carry well known brands, this is called “Co-Branding”, where you fuse a well known brand in that product area and add your brand to the product.
An example would be adding you logo to a "CAMELBAK" branded drink bottle or a if you are targeting the Golf Enthusiast, you could use a "Titelist" golf ball or golf cap - a brand that is known as a top golf brand.
Co-Branding is available in many product categories.
How does your product rate in being unique?
The higher unique factor a product has, the more chance of it having Wow Factor.
If you want your brand to be known as innovative, unconventional, maybe a little funky - then select products that score well on this factor.
Most products can have a Unique Edge
One way to increase the uniqueness rating of your preferred product is the use of existing products with a “unique” twist. An easy way to do this is to explore the many Eco Friendly alternatives for existing products, which offer the chance to present traditional products on unique materials like Eco Plastic, Wood, Bamboo, cork and bags in materials like Jute and Juco.
Tip: Disrupting an existing market ? Select products that rate through the roof in uniqueness!
7. Lifestyle Integrator
By seamlessly integrating into peoples lifestyles, your branded merchandise products can add an extra dimension as a marketing tool, by essentially creating pseudo "brand ambassadors" for your business.
Often these products are used every day of the week, be it at work, after work activities like exercise, gym, kids sports.
These products can become effectively “Mobile Branding Tools”, as the user interacts with people or in outdoor settings, this increases your brand exposure to not just the user, but to potentially a much larger audience.
Products that score well in Lifestyle Integration include Drink Bottles, Sports Shakers, Re usable coffee cups. Umbrellas, deck chairs, all apparel like T-Shirts, Hoodies and in particular Bags and Headwear like caps and bucket hats
One for the stats nerd , the Kitchen is the number 1 place people use and keep their promotional products, and people spend an average 3-5 hrs a day in their Kitchen.
( Source: promotionalproductswork.com.au )
Additionally, Kitchen used branded “Merch” are attractive products for the working from home workforce, which is predicted to become the new norm, note its estimated by people like Bill Gates that up to 30% of all workers in many countries will permanently work from home in the years to come.
Covid has created a “New Norm” for the way we all behave and interact and in particular the impact on things like peoples leisure activities, lifestyle and most significantly how we spend our significant time a week working.
Any item you align your brand with you should consider if its use is impacted either positively or negatively by this new norm.
10. Target Market Match
Marketing basics is to know your customer segments and match your products to their needs, promote yourself to this market or markets, price your products accordingly and make it easy for them to buy and/or find you and your products.
The free marketing lesson over, this one is quite straight forward, apply the same principles to your choice of “branded Merch” you do to your own products, make sure the products match your target market segments, not what products you like to use and would be cool to use and hand to clients to make you feel great.
By applying a rating criteria to judge every possible promotional item, as apposed to randomly selecting "cool" products, you are considering to use for a branded merchandise project, you will increase the chances dramatically that you will select products that are most suited to your own business and therefore increase the probability that each project is a success.
Aligning your brand with drinkware is very effective on its own, selecting an Eco friendly option provides additional advantages for your brand. Associating your brand with re -usable coffee cups for example, tells the world your brand is conscious of its social responsibility by contributing to the reduction in use of disposable coffee cups, of which over 1 billion a year end up in landfill within Australia and New Zealand alone.
Here are my picks of the best 10 eco custom drinkware options you should consider to align your brand with, along with helpful price guides which show “Eco” doesn’t mean more expensive.
300ML Double wall reusable coffee cup. Choice Cup is made from a 50/50 blend of natural rice husk fibre and polypropylene which is shatterproof, odour-resistant and BPA-free. With a trendy look available in a natural, light blue and a bright green colour.
Branding: Print logos in 1 to 4 colours, while a cost saving tip would be to print your logo as a 1 colour.
Price Guide: You will pay between $5 - $9
Metro Cup Bamboo
A blend of bamboo and BPA-Free melamine (50/50). The smooth finish closely resembles the traditional plastic appearance. Comes in a large range of trendy silicone band colours with matching silicone lid and band.
Branding: You logo can be either pad printed or unique de-boss branding on the silicon banding Price Guide: Under $15
Natura Cup Range
Rice Husk fibre and BPA-Free polypropylene. Options available include 340ML double wall & single wall 350/480ML. Uniquely natural look compared with regular plastic. Match your corporate colours with a decorative silicone band and a secure screw on lid with a splash proof flip closure!
Branding: Print or De-boss on the silicon banding again, mix and match the banding and lid colours for added flexibility.
Price Guide: Under $15
Natura Wheat Straw Coffee Mug
A unique and cost effective 350ml round coffee mug - made from 50/50 blend of natural wheat straw fibre and BPA Free polypropylene. Microwave safe for up to 2 minutes, this is a very earthy looking coffee mug.
Branding: Print in your logo in 1 to 4 colours.
Price Guide: A price buster at between $3 to $5
Double Wall Glass Set
Exquisite set of two 410ml double wall glasses which are presented in a black gift box. Made from borosilicate glass which is incredibly light and very strong. The double wall construction keeps drinks hot for longer while the outside of the glass remains comfortable to hold and it keeps drinks cold without messy condensation. They are ideal for use as
on-trend coffee cups or for serving icy cold beverages.
Branding: Laser Engrave glass and also print on the gift box available.
Price Guide: $30 - $45, includes printed gift box.
Eden Glass Drinking Bottle
Sophisticated 600Ml lightweight and shatterproof glass, along with a trendy Bamboo lid. Glass produces a natural choice for a clean & pure taste, ideal for a water bottle. Optional soft touch silicon cover which comes in a variety of colours to match your company brand.
Branding: You logo will shine either as a laser engraved or printed directly on the glass.
Price Guide: Expect to pay around $10
Mirage Drink Bottle Range
Trendy double wall, vacuum insulated stainless steel drink bottle range, all with a timeless design. Key feature being it will keep drinks cold for 24 hours or hot for up to 12 hours. Comes with a standard lid or a secure, spring activated push button lid with a carry handle and an ergonomically designed spout for pouring drinks.
Branding: Laser engrave to a shiny steel finish except for the silver bottle, which engraves to a natural etch. Alternatively you can print your logo.
Price Guide: $12 to $25 depending on branding option chosen.
Make a statement with this 500ml, nature-inspired double wall flask which has a genuine bamboo outer wall. It has a stainless steel inner wall and its own screw on cup with a smart stainless steel finish. The flask will keep drinks hot or cold for longer and has convenient push button operation.
Branding: Printing on attractive and naturally unique bamboo wood surface.
Price Guide: Under $20
Stealth Matt Black Mug / Drink Bottle
Impressive premium 500ml double wall, vacuum insulated stainless steel mug or 700 ml drink bottle, both BPA Free.
Strikingly smart powder black coated matt finish to suit companies who have a "Black" element to their branding.
Stealth is ideal for coffee as well as taking soup and food to work.
Branding: Laser engraves to a stainless steel finish.
Price Guide: Under $25.
What are you waiting for, can you picture your logo on one of my top 10 drinkware ideas ?
Getting started on your custom branded drink bottle project is easy, simply get in touch with us for a chat.
You can also view the full range of custom drink bottles.
Download a copy of this article below.
Lets look at why drinkware should be top of your list of products to consider for your next branding merchandise campaign:
Mobile Branding: Unlike many promotional products, the custom printed drink bottle is a "mobile" branding solutions, your logo travels with the recipient literally as they move around, be it for a morning walk or jog, commute to work or in the car, be it a hot or cold drink. A literal mobile billboard for your brand as the user interacts with people during the day, ideal for building and maintaining brand or logo awareness.
Positive Brand Image - Brand image is critical to every business, the drink bottle branding campaign gives your brand the opportunity to align with being healthy and also socially responsible by promoting the use of re usable drink bottles, hence reducing the use of single user water bottles.
Eco Friendly: The vast majority of Drinkware options are Eco Friendly! Made from either recycled, sustainable, recyclable or biodegradable materials like Stainless Steel, Glass, Wood, Cork and even trendy Rice Husk / Wheat Straw Biodegradable plastic options. By promoting these materials, your brand sends a message you do care for the environment and the future.
Durability - Long lasting and highly durable drinkware options give your brand a long life cycle and return on investment. Vacuum insulated drink bottles, can be used for hot and cold liquid thus further increasing their effectiveness as they can be used by more people more often.
Cost: Affordable to even the smallest marketing budget. The variety of materials you can use starting from plastic and moving to higher features like vacuum insulated bottles, and premium bottles. In addition the high durability mentioned above affords your campaign a good relative cost over life cycle of product.
Perceived Value: Most drink bottle styles have a mid to high perceived value, as they are re usable products. Also higher end options made from wood, glass, stainless steel and vacuum insulated score well for perceived value vs cost of purchase.
Integrated into Daily Life: Drink bottles, coffee cups, sports shakers, all are products we use every day of the week, be it at work, after work activities like exercise, gym, kids sports etc. By seamlessly integrating into people lifestyles your marketing tool increases the ability of your brand to be seen, and ultimately assists you getting "bang for your buck".
Employee Gift: The new working norm is here to stay, with people like Bill Gates predicting over 30% of workers will work from home even in the predicted years post Covid. So what part does a humble coffee cup with your logo play in employee motivation you ask ?
Some stats on this to note:
By using custom branded coffee mugs, travel cups or drink bottles that allow your employees to use while working at home allows your company branding to extend to meet the reach of all your employees, not just the ones who who work "in the office" and see the sign on the door ! Thus giving your employees a positive sense of belonging, increased motivation and attachment to the company they work for.
Irrespective of the size of your marketing budget, and size of company, the use of a custom branded drinkware in its many forms provides great benefits in achieving many goals from your branded marketing campaign. In addition, it is an ideal vehicle as an employee gift, even more so in the new normal working landscape with an increasing proportion of work from home workforce.
Getting started on your branded drinkware campaign is easy, view the range and get in touch with us on how we can help your brand benefit from branded drinkware.