Young companies can learn a lot from mature ones. No matter the size — big or small — the ones who have gone before us have a lot of wisdom to impart. At the end of the day, companies are more alike than they are different. Think about it.
There are three must-haves for any company to thrive, no matter the size: sales and marketing, operations and finance.
If a company is strong in these three functions, chances are they’ll be staying in business. The same goes for nonprofits. Today we’re going to focus on the first function — sales and marketing — and apply it specifically to promotional marketing. You know…the stuff with logos on it known as swag. Let’s go back to young companies learning from mature ones real quick and study what they’ve done to gain brand awareness. No point in reinventing the wheel. No matter the size of a company, wasting money is a no-no. So, you can rest assured, if companies have been spending money on promotional marketing swag for generations (which they have), it’s because they’ve found value in it.
Here are some smart companies who are doing it right:
- TOMS: their name is all over their stuff plus they give you a flag and sticker when you purchase something.
- Vineyard Vines, Southern Tide, Brooks Brothers, Southern Proper: these guys shamelessly promote their marks. Try finding any of their merchandise without a whale, fish, sheep or dog on it.
- Starbucks: coffee, mugs, tumblers, umbrellas — you name it, nuff said.
- NCAA sports: pick any team, go to a game and they’ll inundate you with branded merchandise because they know you’ll go spread their brand long after the game is over.
Even if you’re small or just getting started, don’t be afraid to spend money putting your brand on something. Just make sure it’s the right something. Take the leap of faith and help your brand awareness grow! If nonprofits can do it, you can do it.
Look at what these nonprofits are doing:
- Breast Cancer Awareness: everyone knows the pink ribbon.
- Ronald McDonald House: it’s not just those golden arches that catch your attention, it’s the man himself.
- American National Red Cross, United Way, YMCA, Goodwill, Wounded Warrior Project…the list goes on.
So, what’s the takeaway here? If you’re striving for a super successful business, investing in promotional marketing is a must. There’s nothing more powerful than exposing your brand in the marketplace. Try to change your attitude from “can I afford to” to “can I afford not to.” Empower your brand ambassadors to spread the love for you. Here are some ideas.
Car magnets, pens, notepads, sticky notes, tech covers for smart phones and tablets, silicon bracelets, lapel pins or magnetic nametags for your staff and BOD, apparel.
Let us know how we can help increase your brand recognition this year — maybe through some creative new swag! We’d love to partner with you.