Sunburn and the forgotten Promotion

People who follow our Facebook page will be aware that recently I went to Moreton Island for the day – it was forecast to be one of the last warm weekends this side of winter, and the weather could not have been better. It was clear, warm, with fantastic sunshine and idyllic clouds rolling overhead.

Moreton

 

Which means that of course I burnt rather badly.

But something like that can make you think while you apply 3/4 of a bottle of aloe vera ointment, how much we take something as simple as sunscreen for granted. It’s a product that we in Australia grow up with as a part of everyday life, and something that we tell our kids all about. So in a lot of ways, it represents the perfect promotional marketing opportunity.

We use it every day.
It’s good for us.
We share it with others.
We associate it with being outdoors, and having a good time.

What a perfect way to represent your message. Something as simple as a tube of sunscreen can associate all these positive factors with your brand and develop it that way.

This is Promotional Marketing 101 – help people, and grow your brand at the same time.

Nicholas Letts
Marketing Manager – Promotion Products

How does your organisation differ?

This is a key point in marketing that organisations all over the world can miss. Sometimes it’s not how similar we are to other companies, the way we structure our product offerings, marketing materials or even our logo design that makes the company what it is – it’s the unique features that hold untapped potential to build an audience that is more engaged with your message than some affiliation to a memorable brand.

What I mean by this can best be explained with an example – take Apple. A world recognized brand, and a market leader when it comes to marketing practice and logo design. You can see a full story on the similarity between Applebees new logo here. The key point being that while this may have a short term effect and an association with that brand, ill-thought out plans can lead to association with a brand that empowers that brand, rather than your own and creates a perception as a “hanger-on”.

So how do we capitalise on our brand message and stand out for all the right reasons?

Know your message from day 1.

This is absolutely key. There is no purpose to fumbling blindly through your marketing to try and reach a goal – consider Beats by Dre. Despite entering an arguably saturated market (Skullcandy, Bose, Sony being some of the big players) these headphones have taken the public by storm and made a phenomenal amount of money. Incidentally you can see our headphones here. They did this by having a clear, focused goal, a unique design, and were marketed hard from day one. Now admittedly, not all of us have the budget they did, but it was this focus and drive to be a bit different that made them into an incredibly profitable brand. So know what you want to achieve, and how you;re going to target your brand associations – is it going to be a sophisticated design, grungy, quality and/or price driven?

By knowing your message, you know how to target your brand, you know what will work for you and you can focus your energy, time and money on developing your brand in a unique manner, rather than piggybacking on the coat tails of bigger companies and risk getting lost in their shadow.

Nicholas Letts
Promotion Products – Marketing Manager

How to pick the next Promotional Trend

Pens, bags, USBs, Drink Bottles… they’ve all been (and remain) some of the most effective and highly sought after promotional items available on the market today.

So how is it that you, as a savvy purchasing agent and marketer, can get ahead of the curve and make sure that you have the product that’s going to be the Next Big Thing to really maximize your profitability?

There are a few key things to consider, but two of the most important things to keep an eye on are:

The technology market. Due to the rapidly developing range of technological products that are available, new promotional material comes out every single day that helps our clients stay ahead and provides a genuinely useful and sought after product to their customers – a perfect example of this would be the new OTG USB Drives we have recently added. They’re a new concept integrated with an immensely popular product, making them a marketing slam-dunk.

Continuous Improvement: products that are classics are classics for a reason. Keep an eye on new trends on types of items such as drink bottles or bags, as more products are being released, the build quality increases and you are more able to match the product to your brand with a never-before-seen style.

So in essence, it requires some research on your part, and we are happy to help – simply contact us if you’re looking for something new and we can guide you through your product selection. But keep an eye on what is going to best suit your brand, that’s where the magic happens.

Nicholas Letts
Promotion Products – Marketing Manager

Urgency, Timing and Delivery

By far one of the biggest changes we have seen in the promotional industry over the past years has been the increased need for “Express” products – items that can be delivered quickly all over Australia.

While we always recommend that you place an order some time before you need the products to ensure they get delivered to you on time (and also because we can sometimes offer even more of a saving) we understand that there are situations where time is not a luxury that can be afforded.

A classic case study is when the purchaser has taken over the responsibility due to an unplanned absence or an event that has been sprung upon them with no warning – something that I’m sure most of us have some experience with! And because of that, they need some material to help expand on their message…and they need it fast.

Although it takes time to print a high quantity of items, have them assessed for quality and then shipped out of the factory, we always try to meet our clients needs, so we do offer a number of promotional express products that can be delivered anywhere from 5 days to 24 hours, so if you need something urgently we strongly recommend you call, because we want to help.

So, if you need something urgently, make sure to follow these steps:

  • Know which products you’re after.
  • Look at the “Express Range”
  • Have your artwork ready in a vector format
  • Call us on 1300 303 717 and let us help

Nicholas Letts
Promotion Products – Marketing Manager

The Importance of Branding

I heard it summed up best once like this: A brand is the way your customer perceives you.

And it is true, when we think about a company, we think of the brand itself, whether that’s through the logo or the feeling we as a customer have towards that organisation. So it is of vital importance that you get your organisational branding correct, and make it work for you rather than against you!

But critically, brands don’t have to be all about your product! Take a look at this combination from BUPA recently – as a health fund, this is not the thing most people would have associated them with, but it removes the perception that they are just a company there to provide insurance (even though they really are). And it’s that perception that makes people think of their brand with a warm familiarity, rather than associating them with an aloof, hierarchical entity that is there to produce a profitable return to investors and board members.

By associating your brand with something well enough, that something becomes part of your brand. This is a unique position in the promotional industry as you have the opportunity to use our market and product expertise to truly reflect your brand message and most importantly, actually have the chance to directly choose how your brand will be perceived.

Which is a marketers dream, no?

Nicholas Letts
Promotion Products – Marketing Manager

Where to start?

One of the most common questions we get asked is simply “I’m new to this…what do I do?”. And frankly, it can be tough when you’re not a professional buyer who doesn’t know what PMS colours, vector artwork or pad printing actually means and what impact that will have on their product, design or cost.

Th best way to start is with the product you;re looking for – we can guide you through artwork and printing styles, but the actual product itself is a decision only you can make. So have a look at this fairly handy, short series of questions that is a good start point for the prospective client: 

  1. Who is my target audience?  By determining your target audience, you can really narrow down the range of items that can be suitable – for younger generations, the growing range of technology based items is a good start!
  2. What is it for? A uniform for internal use is probably going to be a different product to something that you’re going to give away at a school fair. And while a giveaway product is going to want to be more cost effective, a corporate level gift will want to focus on quality.
  3. When do I need it? A very important question, as products can have different lead times depending on their make and your location! If you need something ASAP, start by looking at our Express range to get an idea of what is available and possible.
  4. What is my budget? This isn’t a sales pitch! By knowing your budget, the sales team can more accurately pinpoint exactly what might be some good options, and likewise you yourself can view pricing and know immediately whether it’s in the ballpark for what you’re after.

Armed with this information, you have a great starting point for your promotional product journey – and just knowing those 4 things can make it a fast, efficient and hassle-free process!

Have a great weekend everyone, and keep an eye on our Facebook page for upcoming events and giveaways!

Nicholas Letts
Promotion Products – Marketing Manager

Why should you measure to manage?

We all hear about Data and how it’s rapidly changing business, but how does it really affect us? Do we need to bother knowing about it if we are a smaller organisation?

Every day, it seems as if there is a new concept around data-driven decision making, and how it is an all but essential part of any marketers (or Managers) portfolio of tricks to measure certain metrics and how they impact on the bottom line. Some of the concepts are incredibly complicated, requiring huge amounts of historical data plotted against everything from shifts in weather to political leanings, whereas some simply measure the static information that comes into a business every day.

But how does this affect smaller businesses, who are more focused on growth and retaining their existing client base rather than worrying about complex measurements and reporting that, while it seems interesting, comes across as useless in a day-to-day scenario? Why should someone who work in an all-hands-on-deck environment spend precious time building some kind of reporting and storage functionality when their opportunity cost could be more sales that are desperately needed to make a profit?

In many, and I would argue all business, the collection, storage and interpretation of relevant information is what separates those who succeed from those who may struggle. There is a saying in business that “If you can measure it, you can manage it” – for example, while it’s easy to tell if your sales have gone up for one month, if you don’t know why that as happened, it’s incredibly difficult to replicate that success.

By measuring and analysing your data and your procedures, you can quickly identify what works and what doesn’t, meaning greater returns faster and more efficiently than ever before.

Interestingly many tools used by small and medium businesses are developing and implementing a reporting function to help make sense of the huge amount of data that even a small business can collect over a month, quarter or financial year. Something as widely used as Microsoft Excel, MYOB or general accounting software has analytical abilities that most SMB (Small and Medium Businesses) don’t use to their fullest extent. SMB don’t need to spend prohibitively large amounts of money on statistical tools that are difficult to use and unnecessary given the scope of the business, but using what they have effectively can result in a wealth of usable information.

At Promotion Products we are starting to shift to a more data-driven model – we want to know how our processes can be improved to provide greater levels of customer service to our clients and to meet their needs more effectively than before. Something as simple as a water bottle needs to be provided quickly and has to be of a high quality to ensure your satisfaction.

Without measuring the difference between how we did things before, and how we do things now, we wouldn’t be able to identify what helps us help you.

I hope everyone had a great Easter – stay tuned for more product updates, marketing news and concept discussions!

Nicholas Letts
Promotion Products – Marketing Manager

 

Have a safe and Happy Easter

While our thoughts and prayers are with the victims of the recent Brussels attack, we at Promotion Products want to extend our well wishes for a safe and happy Easter holiday break to all our fantastic clients and guests.

Have a great period away, and we look forward to speaking with all of you after a well-deserved relaxation period with friends and family.

Nicholas Letts
Marketing Manager – Promotion Products

How recognisable is your Brand?

Brand recognition is arguably the most important issue for any small or medium sized business, and certainly for any marketing person looking to drive the growth of their business. Sometimes it’s almost impossible to measure the intangible impact that a combination of colours or even a font can have, but we as consumers subconsciously associate those colours, fonts or logo designs with the connotations that a brand gives us.

Interestingly, a company has re-imagined some of the competitors logos in the colours of arguably the most recognizable brand in the world, Google, as shown in our most recent Facebook Post

It shows that something as simple as a colour can trick our brains into associating the design, even if it is a competitors logo, with something that we have already grown an association with and all the connotations it provides.

Nicholas Letts
Marketing Manager – Promotion Products

The Promotions Arena

Printed Tote Bags for Trade Shows

photograph of a printed tote bagPromotional Tote Bags are without doubt one of the most effective means of marketing at a trade show or conference – the items you giveaway at your stand will serve their purpose when the recipients return to their desks but for the duration of the show, a portable advertising banner, given en-masse, will spread your word like no other. Continue reading