Mistakes to Avoid with Promotional Products

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    mistakes-to-avoidAs part of your marketing strategy to increase exposure of your Rhode Island business and attract more customers, the question of promotional products is going to rear its head.  The marketers may have their work cut out for them to persuade the accountants that free give-aways are in fact a shrewd tactic.  But rest assured, promotional products, if chosen carefully, can make a significant impact on getting your company name out there.  However there are some mistakes that are easy to avoid.

    1. Product Quality

    Heavens above, be sure to choose a product which is fit for its purpose.  A light weight magnet that just falls off the fridge, a T-shirt that shrinks in the first wash – tut, tut, this gives completely the wrong impression about your up-and-coming company.

    2. Child Friendly

    If families are your target market, don’t rush willy nilly into purchasing promotional products you think may be great for the kids.  There are numerous safety considerations regarding the young ones, and even if a novelty product is really attractive to a five year old, is it safe?  Children are renowned for identifying an item’s weakness in less than ten seconds - if you are giving out your novelty promotional products to the mercy of small people, heaven help you if it’s not child friendly.  Bits will fall off and disappear into inappropriate body orifices - and then you will be in big trouble.  Safety has to come first so chose products that meet child safety standards or simpler still, choose less fraught-with-danger items without breakable parts, like frisbees and footballs.

    3. Product Messages

    Some products are only appropriate to certain niche markets.  Unless you’re a dentist, don’t offer mouthwash or toothbrushes as promotional products.  Yes of course they are useful but if your Rhode Island business is all about fitted kitchens your clients will fail to see the connection and some delicate souls may even take offense.

    4. A Few Words about Politics and Religion

    The rule in everyday conversation with people you don’t know is to steer clear of politics and religion.  Maintain this rule for your promotional products.  Even if you are strongly in favor of one political candidate in the run up to elections, exclude this aspect from your promotional products – you could be alienating a big percentage of your potential clients who plan to vote the other way.

    As for religion, think very carefully about your festive promotional products.  A branded Santa Claus at Christmas time may be well received by many, but your non Christian clients may find it insensitive.  Just be wary about who you may unintentionally offend by embracing your own religious ceremonies, but ignoring those of other faiths.  In truly multicultural communities, it is far safer and easier to avoid these kind of promotional products or you may be opening up a whole can of worms.

    And finally when you have identified the promotional products that will be liked by your customers, ensure that they are not only perfectly branded but that there is no room for misinterpretation of your images, slogan or logo.  Images and symbols may have different connotations in different cultures so make sure you tread carefully.

    Michelle Collins

    With over 10 years of experience in sales and marketing Michelle is an active article writer in our article section. Focusing on articles to help businesses grow and think outside of the box she covers a wide range of topics ranging from website recommendations, business tips and more.

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