Running a business today is no simple task. Consumers are getting smarter, societal pressures are increasing, and the market is getting more and more competitive. Companies can longer rely on a good product or service alone to persuade consumers – they have to rely on their company’s personality. Are you working on making a positive environmental impact through your business? Are your practices sustainable? Does your company support and build the local economy? Are your wages fair?
Due to the ever-growing competitive market and the inflation of the conscious consumer, your company is subject to scrutiny now more than ever before. You’re not only under the watchful eye of the competition, but of the public. As a result, prioritizing your position as a leader in today’s socially conscious market is essential. Highlighting your values through your good business practices is no longer simply a wise decision – it’s a necessity if you want to thrive in the future market. Your company’s personality can be read all over; through your management style, your branding, your communications… and your promotional products.
What Are Your Promotional Products Saying About Your Company?
Let’s assume your business is committed to the principles of environmental sustainability, community development or equal opportunity… these are qualities you want to be bringing to the forefront and showcasing. Yet, during promotional events, award ceremonies and welcoming parties, the corporate gifts you offer are tired and unoriginal. Perhaps due to lack of time or resources, you’ve resorted to imitative, impersonal products without purpose or any true identity. Welcoming your new team of interns or hires into your company with a plastic pen from China or their 50th USB key tells them nothing about your company’s values or ethos. These items don’t communicate your company culture or your priority to value more than just profits. As a result, they end up on the top shelf collecting dust or lost in the bottom desk drawer never to be seen again, along with the image of your company.
Your corporate gifts and promotional items are a reflection of your company – what you value, believe in, and represent. They are one of your most effective communication tools.
These items, when intentionally chosen and carefully curated, communicate your brand quickly and effectively. They embody the values of your company and therefore do all the communication work for you: through the power of representation, they highlight your ethos and bring to the forefront your values and commitments.
Welcoming new members of your team with a free pen tells them little about your company’s values, or the way the company values them. However, offering them a reusable tote bag or a mini whiteboard, created by a local designer and manufactured here in Montreal, using responsibly sourced material and enabling the reduction of waste highlights a slew of values: supporting local entrepreneurs and the local economy, environmental sustainability, responsible sourcing, orginitaliy, usefulness and creativity, to name a few. Can a mass-produced plastic pen communicate that?
A cheaply-made, disposable product won’t create a lasting impression on your customers, clients or partners – it’s disposable, and as the product gets thrown away, so too does the client’s impression of your company. Investing in a unique item that individuals will actually use, keep, and be proud to show to others not only increases brand visibility, but positions you as a leader in investing in quality items. Quality products illustrate that you care about quality work, illustrating your company is of a higher caliber.
Qualities to Consider
When choosing a promotional product, consider its utility. The goal is to create a lasting impression of your company through the item – items with longevity are not only items of quality, but items that have an everyday use. Consider whether or not the item will facilitate day-to-day activities; is it something that can be used frequently? Longevity and frequent use of a product naturally leads to frequent, lasting impressions of your company.
Another key concept to consider is the uniqueness of the product – how unusual is it? Assess what products are being offered by the competition. To distinguishing yourself from competitors, you’ll need to be a little more creative than offering USB keys, water bottles and pens. Offer a product no one else is. The uniqueness of your product differentiates you from competitors but also communicates to your audience that your company is innovative; it is forward-thinking and cares about engaging with the public in personal, innovative ways.
Behind the tangible product you provide is the supplier you choose. The promotional product market is bombarded with suppliers. The conscious consumer cares about where their food comes from, where their clothes are made, who designed the product they’ve bought. The market needs more responsible companies to match the responsible consumer. Carefully choosing a specific supplier, according to environmental standards, labour opportunities, community involvement, etc., highlights your specific company values. Your audience will better remember a product – and your company – when it aligns with their priorities.
In the quest for distinction and differentiation, the promotional product becomes an essential key in your marketing strategy. This object will serve as a reminder to your employees of who exactly they are working for, and will accompany potential business partners and clients in their quotidian lives, reminding them of a company that is unlike the others. Communicating your brand has ever been easier – invest in a promotional product that embodies the essence and values of your company, and let it do all the communicating for you.
Kotmo guarantees quality and authentic promotional products that effectively build your brand and leave a lasting impact on your audience. Ready to innovate? Contact us!