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August 2, 2013

Do Promotional Items Make a Difference?

[image title=”Money” size=”full” id=”373″ align=”left” linkto=”http://greatatlanticoutfitters.com” ]In a tough economy where all businesses are being more careful about where their dollars are going, it’s not a surprise that you may be thinking about whether your promotional items are a smart investment. When it comes to online marketing, it’s easy to track the success of PPC campaigns, social media contests and email marketing. Promotional items get back to the basics of physically handing out items, and it can be difficult to measure the impact these items have on your bottom line.

So, the question that begs, then, is: Do promotional items really make a difference?

Absolutely! Yes!

Take a look at these fun facts regarding promotional products:

  • 84% of recipients of promotional items can identify the brand

  • 42% of recipients have a more favorable impression of the brand

  • 62% of recipients do business with the advertiser after receiving the item

  • The average promotional item is kept for 7 months

  • The average cost per impression is just $0.004 for promotional items

The bottom line is this: Don’t underestimate the power of promotional items.

Promotional Items = Cost-Effective Marketing

Promotional items are sometimes viewed as luxury items, but from a marketing aspect, these tools are inexpensive and cost effective, no matter what size budget you’re working with. When you consider that the average cost per impression is just $0.004, you know that you’re getting a good return on investment compared to more costly marketing efforts. And, you get the dual benefit of having the promotional item market for your company long after you hand it out.

For instance, if you hand out personalized pens at an event, your business will continue to be marketed for as long as the recipient keeps the pen. Maybe the person will tuck the pen away in a drawer and find it months later, reminding him of your presence. Also, the pen will reach out to other people. If that same person leaves the pen on his desk at work, it will be used and borrowed by others, creating more exposure for your label. Think of how much free advertising you’re getting for your business!

Even when you have to reallocate your advertising budget, don’t pull from promotional items. This type of hands-on marketing remains one of the most effective forms of marketing, and it positively brands your image.

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July 23, 2013

Simple Steps for DIY Screen Printing

Screen printing is a simple and cost-effective method for printing your own designs. While screen printing shops are necessary for large orders at a professional level, you can do small projects right at home! Once you start, you won’t want to stop – trust us.

Here are simple DIY instructions for screen printing.

Step 1: Select the design you want to use and print it out. Make sure that it is the correct size.

Step 2: Get out your TWO embroidery hoops and fabric. The embroidery hoop can be wood or plastic. The fabric should be thin woven mesh material, such as an inexpensive sheer curtain panel.

Step 3: Stretch the fabric over one hoop (inner) and place the other hoop (outer) over both the fabric and inner hoop. The fabric should be tightly pulled through both hoops. You may have to cut the fabric to make it fit tight.

Step 4: Position the hoop over the image of your choice; the fabric should be facing down. If you don’t want the image to move around, use a small piece of tape to secure it.

Step 5: Trace the image using a pencil onto the fabric.

Step 6: Paint your image using a product like Mod Podge. You may also want to place something between the fabric so that the paint does not bleed through.

Step 7: Get your item ready, whether it’s a tote bag or t-shirt. (If it’s a t-shirt, place a piece of cardboard in the middle so the ink doesn’t bleed through.) Place the screen – which should be dry – where you want it to be on the item.

Step 8: Place fabric ink on the screen and spread it around so that the entire image is covered. Then slowly peel the screen off of the shirt or tote bag. If there are some spots that were missed, you may go back and touch them up with a paintbrush.

Step 9: Depending on the type of ink used, you may have to iron the print for a couple of minutes. Read the finishing directions on the ink product for more clarification.
Congratulations! You’ve just mastered the art of screen printing, and you can now put your favorite designs on shirts, backpacks and totes!

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Web Design Milwaukee




June 4, 2013

Interesting Facts that Will Change the Way You Look at Promotional Items

[image title=”Trucker Hats – Promotional Items” size=”full” id=”339″ align=”left” linkto=”http://greatatlanticoutfitters.com/” ]

Have you ever received a promotional product? What did you think of it? Just about everyone has received a promotional item at some point in time, and it’s hard to resist something that is free and useful. The most common promotional products are Koozies, stadium cups, pens and magnets, and the majority of people end up using them because they are useful, and to the consumer, free!

As the marketer, you may be wondering what happens to your products once you hand them out. Do they go used? Do they market your business effectively? Do they draw in customer interest?

Here are a few fun facts about promotional items that will change the way you look at your marketing strategy.

  • Eight out of 10 people can recall the company of the promotional item they received.
  • Buttons were some of the first promotional items that were handed out at the inauguration of George Washington in 1789. This was the “birth” of promotional items.
  • The most common places where promotional items are used include the kitchen (91%), the workspace (74%) and the bedroom (55%).
  • There are plenty of useful promotional items out there, but the top five include wearables, writing instruments, bags, calendars and drinkware. If you’re looking to be different, you know some of the other sectors to target, such as key chains and flashlights.
  • The top buyers for promotional items include education, financial, not-for-profit groups, health care and construction.
  • It’s no mystery why promotional products work. Unlike other marketing strategies, they engage all five senses, they are appreciated by consumers and they are retained for the long term.
  • Promotional advertising remains a billion dollar industry. Approximately $15.6 billion is spent on advertising, which is right in line with online and television advertising.
  • It’s true that promotional items are appreciated and retained by consumers, but they hold more importance than that. They build customer loyalty and trust, two factors that are significant in branding your company and establishing long-term relationships with your clients.

Source: PPAI/ASI/ANA

Photo c/o: elvinstar

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May 28, 2013

Top 10 Buyers of Promotional Items

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romotional tshirts” size=”full” id=”333″ align=”left” linkto=”http://greatatlanticoutfitters.com/” ]

Do you ever wonder who the top buyers for promotional items are? Promotional items are practical and cost-effective, but some markets use them more than others. Let’s take a look at the top ten buyers for promotional items and how they use these products to expand their industry.

1. Education – Whether it’s welcoming students back to school, showing appreciation for teachers during Teacher Appreciation Week or displaying school spirit, promotional items are a real hit for schools and universities across the country.

2. Financial – When it comes to finances, promotional items have it all. From piggy banks to money-filled pens, promotional items come in handy for banks, loan officers and other financial institutions.

3. Not-for-Profit Organizations – Since non-profit organizations are not government-funded, it’s important that they are well supported by the community. A great way to publicize the organization and its mission is to use marketing items at events and fundraisers.

4. Healthcare – Even the healthcare industry needs support at times. Promotional items are great for recruiting patients and showing appreciation for staff members.

5. Construction – Advertising tools can help those in the construction industry because these individuals are often self-employed and don’t have much time to market their services. Promotional items such as flashlights and wearables can proudly display the name of the construction company for instant brand awareness.

6. Trade and Professional – Be prepared for trade shows and other events with items like banners, signs, trade show signs and polo shirts for booth members.

7. Real Estate – Promotional items for real estate are an effective way to market your company or yourself, if you are self-employed. From calendars to magnets to pens, these items can be mailed out to prospective buyers and sellers in the area.

8. Government – Advertising products are great tools for local, state and federal agencies that depend on these products to represent their organization and their commitment to people across the globe.

9. Professionals – From doctors to lawyers to CPAs, these professionals can use marketing products to recruit new patients or clients and market the name of their practice.

10. Restaurants and Bars – What better way to let people in the local area know that you’ve opened a new restaurant than with a fun promotional item, such as a magnet, pen or drink coaster?

Advertising products are fun and unique and can be part of a successful marketing strategy for all industries.

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May 21, 2013

Best Places to Hand Out Promotional Items

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Promotional items have a huge impact on marketing your brand and expanding your customer base. Yet many people are unsure of how to distribute their promotional items to potential customers. Putting some thought into how and where you’ll hand out promotional items will make a difference in how well your items are received and how many customers carry out the desired action, such as by visiting your site, signing up for your mailing list or purchasing your product or service.

Handouts

Handouts are the easiest and most inexpensive way to hand out promotional items. Just be sure to follow the rules in the area where you’ll be handing out items, as some areas prohibit this behavior. The good thing is that you can reach out to people directly and hopefully even start up a few conversations about your product. The drawback is that people are often in a rush and may not give your product a chance.

Trade Shows

Trade shows have the same effect as handouts since you can stand there and hand out products with very little effort. The advantage is that you’re at a trade show, and this environment is specifically designed for companies to market their business. Your audience is already there, and chances are high that they already have some initial interest in your product. The biggest drawback is that there is a lot of competition in this setting, and it can be difficult to make your product stand out.

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Mailings

Bulk mailings have a lot of advantages: you’re reaching your audience directly and not bothering them during the day. However, mailing items does cost money, and you will need to get a hold of addresses and names. If you choose to send products to the current resident, your envelope might get tossed in the mail for being impersonal.

Grand Openings

Look for grand opening events at local hotels, restaurants and retail outlets. This can be a good opportunity to market your product in a business-orientated environment. You can also host your own grand opening and offer special events for new clients. People enjoy grand openings for the very idea of getting special offers!

Remember that handing out promotional items is an ongoing way to attract new customers and continue your positive rapport with existing clients, so don’t hesitate to hand out products at holiday parties, special events and conferences.

Blog sponsored by: Great Atlantic Outfitters 

Photo c/o: mrceviz

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