Is your nonprofit using promotional products? If your answer is “no” or “what’s a promotional product?” then it might be time for a quick lesson in one of marketing’s secret weapons.
Also known as “giveaways,” “swag,” “premiums,” “incentives” and a host of other names, promotional products are essentially any merchandise—T-shirts, mugs, pens, tote bags, phone cases, etc.—given away or sold by an organization. Most often, they prominently feature an organization’s branding.
Chances are, you’re already familiar with these items. According to Promotional Products Association International (PPAI), the education and nonprofit sectors as two of the top three promotional-products buyers—and for good reason. “Tangible, long-lasting and cost effective, promotional products create community, generate awareness through education and advocacy, activate volunteers and raise millions in funding,” said Paul Bellantone, CAE, PPAI president and CEO. “Cause-marketing experts, in partnership with promotional products professionals, have developed some of the world’s most renowned and high-performing campaigns, including Livestrong, Susan G. Komen and American Heart Association’s ‘Go Red For Women,’ to name a few. These beneficial branding and awareness programs create community, fund critical research and help save lives.”