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Friday, May 25, 2018

Minding Your Business! Guerilla Marketing Tactic #102 – Trinkets and Gadgets

Presented by US Sports Marketing.
By: Mark Hale

Every business at one time or another has at least thought about using trinkets and gadgets to promote their business. The trinket and gadget industry is a 100 billion dollar industry. There are so many choices available and it is easy to make a bad choice. By bad choice I mean nobody wants it, will use it and thus it ends up in the trash.

There are basically two categories of promotional activity you can do:
  1. Active promotion. These are things like sending out a direct mail piece or an email, airing a radio or television commercial or billboards. Active promotion simply means you are actively seeking customers.

  2. Passive promotional marketing. This type of marketing you are simply attempting to keep your company’s name in front of the customer. This is generally tangible items (trinkets & gadgets) that you hope the customer will keep and use. Passive promotional items ranges widely from pens, flash drives, water bottles, coffee mugs, note pads, calendars to general marketing materials like pocket presentation folders.
Most businesses have a use for passive promotional items. However, if you are not careful you can waste a lot of time and money with something no one wants or uses.

There are two things to consider when thinking about using passive promotional items.
  1. Is the item useful? Will your prospect find the gadget or trinket useful? We have all receive cheap gadgets from trade or home shows and these cheap gadgets generally end up in the trash and are a waste of money. If you know your customer, it is easier to decide on what items will be best for your business.

  2. Does the item make a good representation and good impression of your business? I have seen a HVAC company purchase refrigerator magnets and his only consideration was price. The result was he purchased cheap magnets and the magnetic material was so weak they would not stick on the refrigerator. Big waste of money, but more importantly it put an impression of his company of poor quality.
If you have sales people or do a lot of home and trade shows, one of the passive promotional items we produce that are useful and make a great impression are note pads.

There are five basic types of note pads:
  • The note pad. Generally printed logo and phone on the page allowing for ample room for writing. The rule of thumb is not to make the pads so cluttered that they will not be used. These pads will keep your company logo, web and phone number in front of prospect 24/7.

  • The Phone Note Pad. These are small phone message pads. This type of pad is great for business-to-business marketing. A strategic placement of a phone note pad at a busy switchboard or with the receptionist of your prospect and within a few days your company’s names, phone and web site will be distributed throughout the entire office. These pads also warm the coldest screeners when making cold calls.

  • The To-Do Pads. Design as a daily to-do list to help recipients stay organized in their professional or personal lives. The To-Do Pads with Grocery list on the back. This type of pad is very popular with women and any business that has women as the key decision makers should consider this type of pad.
  • Graph pads. This type of pad is very useful to businesses who has to graph or draw a design either for customers or who has customers who have to design layouts. For example, if I owned a landscape supply company or nursery, I would put my logo and phone number on a pad of graph paper and give it to every landscaper I could.

  • The final thing to consider when it comes to pads is the final packaging. You can hand out lose pads but if you take it one step further you will make a great first impression. Simply combine a couple note pads with a nice pen, business card and a coupon special AND shrink wrap it and you have a home run for a home show or trade show or as a cold call pack for your sales team.
  • We had one customer increase their sales from a trade show by 75% when they passed out pads with a pen and a special show coupon, shrink wrapped in a nice neat bundle.

    For this and other passive marketing ideas, contact your Wilson Printing USA marketing representative.
    This article was written by Mark Hale and is owned by Wilson Printing USA.

    Visit their website at:

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