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How Promotional Items Can Lend a Helping Hand in Social Media

Promotional Items

Promotional products tend to directly correlate with tradeshows and conventions.  Simple giveaways that help companies promote their business and they work extremely effectively.

According to a study conducted by The Advertising Specialty Institute in 2010, the cost per impression of a promotional product was $0.005, compared to prime time television which was $0.018, national magazines at $0.045 or even spot radio at around $0.058.  That’s cheap, which is all fine and dandy only if that impression sticks.  Fortunately, 83% of recipients could identify the advertiser on the promotional items that they own.  In the marketing and advertising world, you drool over those numbers.

Can promotional products be as effective outside of the trade show setting though?  The simple answer to that question is OF COURSE, who doesn’t like getting free stuff!  It may not be as simple as standing outside your booth and handing out tote bags, pens, stress balls or sunglasses, but with a little creativity promotional products can help grow your brand online as well.


Contests can be found all over the Internet.  Primarily through social media (i.e. Facebook, Twitter, Google+, etc.), their main purpose is to interact with their customer base, get people “liking”, “tweeting” and “sharing” to gain fans, followers, or get more people in their circle (these terms are getting a little out of hand).

Users usually need an incentive though.  Yes it can be nice to get a few people to share your information for free, but to get the most bang for your buck companies try and reward those with promotional items who take the time to answer your “call to action”.

There are a variety of contests that are effective.  Trivia and mystery photos immediately gain momentum with users’ thoughts and opinions.  Some contests will ask people to write blog posts or make videos about the products or services they provide.

A perfect example of this would be the Doritos commercials during the Super Bowl.  Thousands, if not millions of people submitted videos to try and win a coveted spot on the biggest game of the year (the prize may have not been a promotional product, but you also won’t be coughing up over a million bucks either…and remember what we discussed about cost per impression earlier).


Promotional items can be the extra mmmpphh B2B companies need to attract new clients with social media.  While most businesses nowadays are on Twitter, Facebook, Google+, LinkedIn etc, it sometimes takes an out-of-this-world tweet or message to get their attention, if at all.

Sending prospective clients promotional goods and following up through these social networks can help you get your foot in the door a little quicker.


Promotions, duh…it’s in the name itself.  Promotional goods are obviously the smart choice when it comes to online promotions.  Something as easy as “The first 100 people to ‘Like’ our new page get a custom golf shirt” immediately gives you a following to present news, offers and upcoming events to.

Promotional products can work in the opposite fashion as well.  Companies like to hand out promotional items at tradeshows, conventions or special events to help promote your social media outlets.  Gaining fans can be as easy as imprinting the Facebook Thumb’s Up logo with the URL underneath on a stress ball and giving them away.

Again, remember we established around 83% of people remember the advertiser on their promotional item.

Branded promotional item(s) can be the perfect incentive for someone to “take action”, a great thank you, or a quicker way of establishing new relationships online.  Because promotional products are such useful gifts, your company stays attached with the user for a time afterwards hopefully gaining a new loyalty and prospering relationship for the future.

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