Using branded promotional merchandise is a great way of getting your logo, name and contact details in front of your ideal prospects and customers. Having your own branded merchandise can really make you stand-out if seen on your customers’ desks, at networking events, VIP customer events,trade shows, fundraisers, sales shows, etc.
As a small business owner you can used branded items to achieve specific objectives such as encouraging people to visit your website, shop or premises or to raise awareness about a new product or service that you are launching.
The most important branded item every business owner should have is an up-to-date business card. I am often shocked at the amount of people I meet at networking meetings, for the first time, who don’t have a business card on them. This is the greatest mistake you can make for your business as initial impressions are so important and not having a business card will make you look dis-organised and ill prepared. When you are making the decision to have business cards printed always remember to utilise the reverse of the card too which you could use to list, say, the benefits of using your product or service.
Initially, it is sensible to invest in just a small quantity of promotional merchandise and upon receiving enquiries or orders track the source of their enquiry by asking where they heard of you or why they decided to sign-up with you. Once you have ascertained what works best you can then order more of the item(s) that give you the best return.
Keep in mind that by making your most loyal customers feel valued, with a carefully selected gift, could give you as much of a return, if not more, than placing a really expensive advert which may give you no return at all. You want to capture your customer or prospects attention with something useful or unusual, so ensure you give this careful consideration before ordering any items. The more important the client the higher quality gift you want to give so for your VIPs you might like to present them at a VIP event so that you show your appreciation publicly when awarding the gift.
A good relationship marketing strategy is often made-up of a combination of branded and unbranded merchandise. Dependent upon the size of a business will also determine how often you keep in touch with your business contacts. Some companies will keep in touch/send items on a monthly basis whereas other will choose to do so quarterly, six monthly or on annual basis. The choice is yours. Again you can test how effective the timing of keeping in touch with your contacts is too.
Remember whatever you do, at the very least you, you need to send Christmas or New Year cards to your contacts to ensure they know that you appreciate their custom and to remind them that you are still in business.
Is branded merchandise something you’ve been considering for your business or is it something you utilise already? What success have you had using it in your business to-date? Would love to hear your thoughts on branding so please do comment below.
Until next time,