To Brand, or Not to Brand?

Some may believe any item with a logo will successfully promote their business, but ensuring merchandise reflects your organisation in a positive light and maintains your brand integrity is essential. For example, a cheap branded pen that breaks after being used just a few times has the potential to create a negative association with your brand and your business.

The Australian marketplace is more discerning than the US and UK, where low cost, mass distribution pieces are the norm and volume rather than quality drives many marketing campaigns. Our smaller population makes short production runs more viable, allowing greater luxury in terms of what kinds of items we brand and the flexibility to brand high quality product. Environmental impact is also becoming an important consideration when marketing your business.

So, what is the right merchandise for your business? Does it fit your brand identity? Does the product itself link in some tangible way to your brand or does it at least fit the purpose for which it is being given out? Giving “stuff away” is not enough to do your marketing goals justice and that is why working with an industry specialist can help. An industry specialist will direct you to products that are fit for purpose, develop and enhance your business image and successfully promote your brand in the hands of customers.

It is also essential to brand the right product in the right way. “Brand slapping”, meaning the placement of a large logo onto a product without much thought, may work effectively when a brand is well known, but it does not always have the same results for new or smaller businesses. I encourage my clients to think about their promotional products being used when discussing logo placement and the types of decoration available. Sometimes simply moving a logo to a more unusual position will give the item the point of difference it needs.

One may also be inclined to consider the value of ‘brand partnership’ – co-branding onto a product produced by a well-known retail brand such as a Callaway, Nike or Gildan. This allows one to leverage on the reputation and marketing activity of those brands.  Once again, an industry specialist will be able to guide you toward the right ‘brand partnership’ for your business.

Branded collateral is an investment in your business. Make your investment count by spending a little more time considering when, where and just how to brand an item effectively.

How much thought have you put into branding of your promotional products?

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