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Promotional Bags: Good Value or a Waste of Money?

Discussion in 'Public Relations & Press Releases' started by JonV6, Dec 23, 2014.

  1.  
    JonV6

    JonV6 Applicant

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    Hello everyone,

    I'll cut straight to the point. My company is thinking of running a campaign in the run up to summer 2015 offering a 'luxury travel' set. What with our marketing manager just about to head off for maternity leave it's down to me to source the products and I'm not entirely sure it's the best idea. I'm sure people on here have run promotional merchandise campaigns before so I want to know, were they worth it?

    Also, based on our budget, this is the best bag I can find: http://www.bagsofideas.com/Details.asp?ProductID=94. Our target market is successful professionals, 30 - 50, M and F with disposable income. I'm sure there are a few of you here so I wanted to ask you what you thought of it as a prize? Would it, combined with some other smaller travel items, be enough for you to part ways with some basic contact information such as email address and postcode? If we're going to do this I want to do it properly and get some data collection out of it.

    TLDR: Are promotional merchandise campaigns worth it? Would the bag I've chosen motivate you enough to part with contact information?

    Thanks in advance for everyone's help!
     
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    Maevla

    Maevla Administrator Staff Member

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    Hi Jon

    I think promotional gifts can work if the campaign is properly planned and you know what you want to get out of it. As I'd fall into the category you're aiming at I'd say though I wouldn't carry that bag about promoting somebody else business, not sure if I'm on my own with that? I probably would use the toiletries though if they smelled nice :)

    Would you be pitching at a conference or trade show? I'd say you could spend a lot less just to get data - it's an idea to think about how you would collect the data as we recently did a business trade show and people weren't that bothered about the freebies - they were more bothered about how quickly they could leave details, so for us speed of data capture was the learning we took away.
     
  3.  
    JonV6

    JonV6 Applicant

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    Hi Maevla,

    This was my concern. I am (slightly (n)) over the age of the intended group but the idea of carrying around a bag adorned with another companies logo doesn't appeal to me either.

    There would be a split. Some of it would be tradeshow based and then the rest would be online promotion. Agreed about the cost of getting data. For me this is more about getting as much out of our spend as we can, I have a feeling the boss is already set on the idea. Interesting point about speed of capture. What were you offering in return other than the freebies that made them want to leave their info?

    Thanks

    Jon
     
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    Maevla

    Maevla Administrator Staff Member

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    Hi Jon

    The business show we attended was a local business event (billed as being quite large - 1300 attendees) and we attended really as we were invited as I blog now and then for their magazine.

    To be honest - we don't attend many and this was a bit of a learning curve. We made our own gift bags with small things in like sweets, pens, our leaflets and a raffle ticket for a larger prize. We gave the bags away on the day whether we got info or not, with the option to register at the website later in order to be able to claim the raffle ticket.

    Didn't cost us an awful lot but we captured around 120 emails on the day and on top of that around another 400 business cards.

    I would say that it wasn't very successful in terms of getting new business (although we did get some new business) for the time and effort we put in.

    What we did take away was that:
    A - It was the wrong sort of event for our market industry - (somewhat down to how the event itself was pitched as to what it actually was on the day)
    B - Everyone is wanting the same data so you have to stand out - personality over freebies works every time when face to face - this is what got us the data :)

    Maev
     
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    Duncan

    Duncan Moderator Staff Member Premium Member

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    Rebrand it 'Dirty Weekend Travel Set' and pack the bag with naughties as well as luxuries and I'll share my details in response to your tongue in cheek humour. Plus everyone knows sex sells.

    Plus its not an iPad!
     
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    Maevla

    Maevla Administrator Staff Member

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    LOL Duncan - now why didn't I think of that haha
     
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    JonV6

    JonV6 Applicant

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    I like the idea of registering in return for a raffle entry. As you can imagine these packs aren't going to be that cheap to put together so we can't really offer one to everyone. I like the fact you've found that personality wins out, this is what I've always believed. The other stuff can be a bit gimmicky but if you can have a genuine conversation with a person you're more likely to be remembered by them than the man who gave out some freebies. Duncan, your point has been very much taken on board, not too sure what the boss will think of it but I'm sure I'll be able to sell it to him!
     
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    CoffeeBeans13

    CoffeeBeans13 Graduate

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    I would think that this sort of gift as quite expensive would be better given out somewhere you have a captive audience. Perhaps host an open day to showcase your business and invite potential customers and those that could add value to your business, and then give these out at the end of day?
     
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    Toni Rose

    Toni Rose Graduate

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    We attended a business event and also made up little bags with our company leaflets in, a retro bag of penny sweets and a business card inside with a raffle ticket stapled to it with the offer of following us on Facebook or twitter for the chance to win a variety of Prizes (we had a weekend away, days out, cinema tickets etc.) and we found not only had we made up way too many bags (the expected visitor count was nowhere near the amount of people that actually turned up) but not many people actually followed the raffle draw. We did gain new followers and likers on social media but nobody came forward to claim the raffle prizes and we actually ended up giving them to staff through our employee of the month scheme! We had quite a few people who wanted to take our cards and a leaflet but didn't wish to carry around promotional bags so in essence we came away with the data we needed as we had a business card swap basket but the promotional bags were useless. I think you end up with so many bags at these kind of events that the majority of the giveaway items are thrown away on the way out unless its something that really excites you or is something that's going to be pretty useful!

    We also attended an event the year before last and took bags of fudge with our business cards attached again we came away with not many less bags than we had started with and the ones we did give out we didn't get any business from although they were tweeted about because of how delicious the fudge was lol!

    Looking back I think we would have had more luck with no 'gimmicky' promotional items and having one big giveaway maybe for something electrical or a week away that a potential customer could fill in their details to be entered into a draw and the winner be contacted via email. In terms of time spent by two people organising, preparing bags, collecting information and drawing raffles this would have more than likely worked out to be the cheaper and simpler option all way round.

    We were opposite a company at one of the shows who had a 'how Yorkshire are you competition' running where basically there were 3 pictures of places in Yorkshire and all you had to do to enter the competition to win the prize was to guess where the places were and fill in your info underneath the pictures - such a simple idea but everybody seemed to want to get involved and by the time they left they had a box full of entries and more importantly a box full of data!
     
    JonV6 likes this.
  10.  
    james murphy

    james murphy Sarcasm in bucketloads - Say hi though!

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    I'm who you're aiming at too. 33. Disposable income. Apparently i'm professional too!

    I like a cool prize at a trade show and happily hand my card over for products I know I will never buy in exchange for a chance at a decent prize. .

    Would I part with my details online to be in with a chance of winning your marketing bag, probably not.

    It would for me entirely depend on what you would be trying to sell me.
     

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