How to Succeed at Sponsored Swag

We’re heading into gift season … which means you’re about to see a lot of sponsored swag. Companies love to hand out little items with their own logos on them as giveaways and thank-yous and end-of-year gifts. 

If you’re thinking of doing this, we’re actually in support of the notion!

It’s a fairly successful way to get your name out there and keep your company top-of-mind. Branded swag is a popular concept for a reason … because everyone loves free stuff! Whether it’s a mug, a pen, a hat, or the king of all popular giveaways — the T-shirt — it’s hard to turn away something that’s both useful and completely free.

And, let’s face it, these items are often regifted. That’s not exactly a bad thing, though, is it? That means a brand’s name is being passed around even more effectively. It might wind up with someone who’s never heard of the company before, which means a potential new customer for you. Plus, the act of passing the gift on is almost like a referral from one friend to another, which is so much more valuable than any other form of advertisement.

But there’s a right way and a wrong way to hand out sponsored swag. Here are our best tips:

1) Choose wisely. Some people think “more is more.” They spend a lot of money trying to send cool gifts, like wine openers and backpacks. But bigger isn’t always better. It’s important to figure out if your gift is actually going to be useful and appreciated. If your audience is more likely to keep a magnet than a backpack, don’t waste the money! More importantly: Will 80% of people love backpacks, but keep them stored in the back of the closet most of the year, as opposed to 50% of people keeping the magnets, but seeing them on the fridge every single day? What’s the real value in a gift, in terms of marketing and ROI? Yes, you want people to be excited and appreciate your company — but if liking you more just translates into one more purchase, you might have barely balanced out the price of a few of those backpacks. Working out your end goals can help you justify really cool high-value gifts to land high-value clients. Or you can cast a wide net for a lifetime of repeat buyers.

2) Add a relevant message. Sure, you can just mutely hand out totes to every single person walking by on the sidewalk. But it helps if you provide some engagement, too. If it’s a holiday card, think of something besides “Seasons Greetings.” For example, if you’re sending a pocket flashlight, maybe you can say “May Your Days Be Merry and Bright.” Tying back into the gift is a little more memorable. Bonus points if your company is related to lighting, home goods, etc.

3) Personalize it! Yes, we did just mention the benefits of regifting. And you can’t exactly regift anything with your own name on it. But there’s an even greater benefit to customizing sponsored swag, if you can afford it: People just love to see their own name in print. Whether it’s their initials, their last name, or something else fun and creative, delivering something that both reminds them of your company and shows that you care about them personally is going to guarantee you a customer for life. Are you a pet store? How about a bowl with fluffy’s name on it and your logo? You know that’s a keeper!

If you’re thinking of handing out sponsored swag this holiday season, now’s the time to start thinking about your designs and price points. 

And to ensure that your gift stands out from the rest, we can supply some creative ideas that uniquely align with your brand and will make an impact with your exact audience.

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