8 Promotional Product Marketing Mistakes You Can’t Afford to Make


So, you have decided to use promotional product marketing to increase sales, promote your cause, build your brand, draw in new clientele, or increase the overall moral in the office – but, now what?

Now, you have to decide how to best execute your plan and make your promotional product marketing ‘footprint’ a raging success. You have your product selected, logo designed, and you know what you want to say – but, will your marketing strategy be the ‘bomb’ or will it be a complete promotional killer?

Here are ‘8 Promotional Product Marketing Mistakes You Can’t Afford to Make!’

1) Lack of Strategy and Goals for Product and/or Promotion

There is no doubt promotional products boost excitement and serve a big purpose for little investment. But, that investment can only serve it’s purpose with some strategic planning.

Clearly define your product expectations and goals!

Promotional products can be invaluable tools when used correctly. If your goal is to gain new customers – who is your target audience? What would they like to receive? Is your goal simply to drive awareness and increase booth traffic – how might your best achieve that?

Build a strategic game plan that only leaves one outcome – you are the winner! (Tweet This)

2) Ineffective Distribution 

It’s that time of year, the calendar orders are trickling in… (speaking of -have you ordered yours?)

You have ordered 250 econo desk calendar’s sure to deliver a large advertising punch throughout the entire year; whether this little billboard sits at home or the work place your message is going too! Well, that is unless you, your assistant, and secretary forget to pass them out.

You say- “what?” Yes! Sounds crazy, right? Wrong!

Don’t fall victim of forgetting those shiny new calendars in the closet, in the car where the smelly soccer sneakers have now dripped mud on them, or on the floor at home where the new puppy just ate your fancy logo. Put your promotional products where you will see them and remember to distribute them efficiently. The garbage will do little for your promotional marketing strategy and for the growth of your business.

3) Not Allowing Enough Lead Time

Plan Ahead! Your promotional product-marketing plan is relying on it. While, we at GACO Sourcing have turned around many orders in as little as a few day’s notice – planning is essential and key!

And, here is why;

Say you are a high-quantity,  big volume buyer. Time is money! You can save a lot of money by having GACO research the best possible option for sourcing your product. That might me shipping it from an over seas factory – which takes time. Remember, time is money and that 90-100 day lead-time means more money in your pocket.

Secondly, while we would all love to think that things always go as planned; we are also faced with the reality, things happen. Your artwork might need to be reworked to fit properly. There maybe shipping delays, problems in printing, and/or quality. If you allow ample time for back and forth corrections, you will save yourself a lot of grief and stress assuring your final product is done the way you envisioned.

4) Buy Products People Want and Find Useful

Have you ever thought to ask your customer or employee what they would like to receive? If your goal is to increase sales, promote your cause, or build employee moral then doesn’t it seem natural to ask the recipient?

We are all guilty of falling into habit – “but, we have given out pens, mugs, and t-shirts for the last 10 years – why change now?” Change is good – the minute we stop being afraid of what could go wrong and think what could go right we have entered a whole new sense of understanding and growth potential.

5) Price Matters

Giving out a cheap product is sometimes worse than giving out nothing at all. Remember, promotional products are the door to endless opportunities – the ambassador to a world of endless possibilities. The very items you choose to hand out are sure to leave a lasting impression of your business for years to come. What kind of impression do you want to leave?

Bottom line; you don’t need to spend millions of dollars to make a lasting impression – just make sure your decision reflects the value you intend to bring to your new potential customer. That few hundred bucks could make or break a deal – will they remember you? Or simply throw your name in the trash?

6) Marketing to the Wrong People

Everyone loves free stuff and who doesn’t love to hand out hot, new, interesting promotional items? Keep in mind what purpose those items are there to serve. You purchased those items to appeal to current and prospect customers. You are counting on those individuals to use your logo imprinted promotional item to bring your business to the next level. Put them in the hands that matter!

While balls and stuffed animals look appealing to children – if children are not your target market then, little Susie might not be your best recipient. After all, the minute little Susie snuggles up to that stuffed animal in bed is the same minute your name just became invisible to the rest of the world.

7) Clear Contact Information

While, the promotional product is important to the current or potential client – what is most important to you? Your business name and imprinted information! Most promotional products are short on space – so you have some important decisions to make.

Many companies list their business name, phone number, email address, website, and/or logo slogan. Our specialized team of design experts can help you make some of those decisions. For example, you have a super catchy slogan but, does it make sense to put your slogan on something if the recipient is unfamiliar with your cause? How will they contact you? Where can they find out more?

And, always, always check your final proof for your promotional product!

8) A Name You Can Count On

Reputation matters! Go ahead, search Google there are hundreds if not thousands of promotional product companies in the marketplace today.

A lot of companies are price competitive but, lack quality and customer service. Do your research, “at GACO we see each client as a partner and extension of their marketing department.

We go beyond product selection by identifying strategic goals and opportunities. We monitor client success and make suggestions along the way.”