4 things to know about your branded merchandise choices

If you’re planning and deciding on your branded merchandise strategy and what products to choose from, getting overwhelmed about your promotional product choices is common.

Long gone are the days when there were only a handful of marketing channels to focus on. Now, with rapid advances in technology, it becomes ever more difficult to decide on the right marketing channels and marketing mix let alone making the right decision on your branded merchandise.

They say you’ll make over 35,000 remotely conscious decisions each day, and as your level of responsibility increases, so does the smorgasbord of choices you are faced with. It’s scary and can get confusing with so many choices you’re faced with.

Did you know that 4 in every 5 customers will hold onto branded merchandise?

That means every time you invest in a branded merchandise, you give 80% of consumers / buyers an opportunity to welcome your brand into their hands and minds.

With that in mind, it’s important to ensure you choose a product that best represents your brand.

Selecting the right promotional product is an absolute necessity.

With the right promotional product, you will achieve your marketing and business goals- whether that be improved percentage of profits, greater engagement, a boosted number of clients, or even something as simple as building and maintaining a strong connection with the people who matter to your business.

Through which you can achieve your marketing and business goals such as improved percentage of profits, boosted number of clients, and more importantly building and maintaining a strong connection with people who matter to you.

To help with this decision, we have developed five easy steps that you can follow. Of course if you do get stuck you can always get in touch, as we are always available to help you throughout your journey.

The branded merchandise you choose must take these four key considerations in mind:

  • Guided Framework (Knowing the why)
  • Utility (Merchandise Staying Power)
  • Relevance (to your Brand)
  • Represent / Epitomise your Company well
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Guided by a Framework: Knowing the Why of Branded Merchandise

Every marketer has a different agenda for their branded merchandise. Some use them to build their brand in one way or another, where others use them as marketing collaterals at events or trade shows.

Whether it’s just little items to have around the office, a specific uniform employees wear, or useful gifts for customers, custom branded merchandise helps build brand recognition, connects your brand to people and leaves a lasting impression.

Events and Tradeshows are one of the most popular places where companies give away branded merchandise.

They are absolutely packed with different businesses trying to keep their name in your head.

Whether it is an inexpensive pen or a more expensive item, the goal is the same; it needs to make it home with the person you give it to, and so it is vital that you stand out from the rest.

Gifts like wedding favours, corporate gifts or premium gifts are a little different, as usually you don’t have to buy these items in bulk. Knowing why you need branded merchandise is important as it can help you look for items that compliment your new product or services, and really drive home your marketing goals.

It’s also worth keeping in mind the time factor when planning for branded merchandise, to ensure you give your chosen supplier enough time for production and delivery.
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Know your Customer

It’s important to think about your customers.

Having a good understanding of who they are will not only make choosing the most effective branded merchandise much easier, but will also be critical to marketing success in all of your marketing channels.

When thinking about your prospective audience, you have to consider two core groups: prospective customers, and existing customers.

Typically, your branded merchandise strategy will be vastly different if it is targeted at turning prospective customers into leads rather than gifting something to existing customers as part of a campaign, initiative or event.

Rather than just picking something that you’d like, or what’s on trend, consider what your audience will use, appreciate, and want to keep for a long time.

When you offer branded merchandise your audience are actually interested in, you’ll gain more brand recognition and you are more likely to see a positive return on your investment.


Utility (Give your merchandise staying power)

When you understand your customer, this will allow you to select the right promotional products that resonate with your audience. These will be products that your audience will use now, and can use for a long time – something we call ‘merchandise staying power’.

With this in mind, to get the ‘merchandise staying power’ when selecting your promotional products, ensure you consider whether the promotional products are:

  • Useful
  • Quality
  • Attractive
  • Enjoyable

According to ASI’s Global Impressions Study (2020) the number one reason for people keeping a branded item was because they found it useful (60%+), and that on average more than 50% of consumers who own a branded merchandise have kept it for more than 5+ years.

Clearly useful, good quality, attractive and well thought out promotional products are valued by consumers – bringing a positive brand perception each time they’re worn or utilised.

Cheap business promotional items can be a bit of a minefield as well. They may not break the bank, but they can break easily, which can tarnish your brand’s reputation in the consumer’s eyes. From an environmental point of view, the less ‘disposable’ your promotional items are perceived to be, the more ecologically friendly your products are as well!

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Relevance (to your Brand)

Every company has a brand.

That brand stands for something. It means something. Therefore, consistency is key when you’re promoting your brand and company.

Branded merchandise that reinforces brand relevance will help your customers associate your company with the merchandise they have been gifted, and more importantly capture the essence of your brand and what you stand for.

Apart from that, the branded merchandise should best suit your chosen industry, beliefs, and values, ensuring you represent your business fairly and accurately.

Relevance is key. Whilst giving someone a high-end gift or something incredibly useful is nice, it doesn’t give any type of hint at what you’re trying to promote or what your business offers.

Look for an item that may compliment your new product or service and, more importantly, your brand.

Branded merchandise works well for getting your brand into peoples’ hands, into their homes and offices and getting the word out about a new product/service, but only if you know how to make them work for you.

But always remember that if you are still completely lost, you have Betta Concepts, so don’t hesitate to get in touch.

Stuart Williams

Managing Director

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