Promotional products offer a unique opportunity to physically interact with your brand...

when they are integrated with story.

-David Betke-

12 Things Promotional Products Should Do For You

Like any other advertising form, promotional products are a touch point for your brand, an opportunity to influence that movie that is playing in peoples' heads.

But unlike other media forms, promotional products provide a unique opportunity to physically interact with your brand. When incorporated with story, promotional products can act as a unique anchor. Every time someone touches that product they are transported back to the moment of how you made them feel when you touched them with your story.

At the very least promotional products should accomplish one of these 12 things:


In our experience there is no better way to get your message through to, and acted upon, by a big decision maker or high value prospect than with a promotional product integrated with compelling copywriting.

We call it Dimensional Advertising™.

We have seen action rates as high as 58%.  One of our pieces actually generated a 6000% return within 6 months of launch. The lifetime value of the new clients was well into the 7 figures. 

Think high value account acquisition, recruitment and fundraising


Used correctly at trade shows to gather qualified leads, golf tournaments to engage strangers in your brand story, or internally to motivate employees, promotional products can be great incentives to do something. Add an action funnel and key metrics and you have a marketing program that can deliver invaluable data to optimize engagement and actions per dollar. 

Think trade shows and events

Everyone likes being recognized for progress and promotional products can be turbo charged pats on the head. Breaking down goals into manageable action steps and giving rewards at pre-determined points can increase engagement measurably. 

Think project management and program implementation 

When behavior needs to change, promotional products are up to the task. Within a well thought program they can be amazing tools to help people form new positive habits. They act as triggers to remind an individual of the difference between current behavior and desired behavior. Think safety messaging.

One item of note that was significant to our company was a program that Dave initiated. It was an accident prevention measure that took our total recordable on site vehicle incidents from well over a dozen to 0 in its first year. The direct repair savings exceeded $50,000, however the indirect savings due to less investigations, lost productivity and credibility with clients would far exceed $250,000. This trend brought our total recordable incident frequency (TRIF) well below industry standards which has given us an advantage over our direct peers in the challenging marketplace that is Alberta’s current oil industry. We have enjoying stable workload during these hard economic times and are seeing future opportunities still coming forward. We attribute this to better efficiencies and high productivity that programs like these create.

Clint Weir
VP of Projects- Big Country Energy Services

    Think safety programs, non-profit social change, and community outreach programs


    Promotional products should always be chosen through the lens of brand.  They should reinforce your brand story and draw people deeper into your story or vision. But be careful, when they are used improperly they can do lasting damage to your brand, lose customers for life and reposition your offering (read lower your profits).

    Here is an example:

    Check out this video

    Think product launches and on boarding 


    There have been numerous studies finding that cash is not as good of an incentive as branded product. A well thought out premium (a custom product produced just for your brand) that people cannot buy, is an amazing show of gratitude, and it will keep that positive movie playing in your customer’s heads.

    Think sales levels gifts, speaker gifts, and client recognition

    Promotional products can be great education tools. Their very nature draws people into your story, and if used wisely will take an abstract concept and make it concrete. If the medium is chosen wisely it indeed becomes the message.

    Think social action, instruction, and product education.


    Branded merchandise is an amazing way to tell your brand story, create a raving fan base and coop advertising costs out to you audience.  Everyone wants that concert t-shirt or that festival souvenir. Most people buy souvenirs from attractions and when they wear them, they become part of your brand story.

    Think festivals, concerts, attractions and company stores.


    When a happy employee or huge advocate wears your branded shirt to the gym, they become the best advertising possible, an interactive billboard people immediately trust. They can rave about the brand on their shirt… or they can trash it.

    See #6- recognition and rewards.

    Think company stores and client gifts.  Forget your logo- tell your story!

    A premium is a product that is created specifically for your brand. They are amazing fundraising and motivational tools because no amount of money can buy them… people have to earn them. They are only available to people who engage in a predetermined action, or series of actions.

    Think non-profit fundraising, employee incentives, and customer loyalty programs.


    Building a brand requires consistency and promotional products are up to the task. Think employee uniforms and apparel for customer facing interactions and drink ware, writing instruments and desk accessories for internal branding and team building.


    We saved the best to last. When paired with good copywriting, and process, promotional products can be remarkable measurable lead generators. Our process ensures that every time you donate a promotional product to a silent auction, golf tournament, or event you are attracting and measuring sales or recruitment leads.

    The One Thing You Should Never Do With Promotional Products?

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    ©David Betke 2016

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