There are some people who still refuse to recognize the potential for promotional products – either as tools to increase revenue or as a means to raise brand awareness. These companies are happy to channel their marketing budget into other, often unproductive channels, like social media or print advertising, but they’ll still insist that promotional marketing is a ‘waste of money.’ However, we’d urge these companies to consider the institutions that make a fortune from promotional marketing, and ask themselves the question: ‘what are they doing that we aren’t?’

Museums, galleries and stadiums

Many of Britain’s art galleries and museums are not-for-profit institutions, and as a result they don’t charge for admission. An institution like London’s natural history museum has to pay countless staff, maintain priceless exhibits and factor in the upkeep of a grand old building, however – none of which comes cheap. While government funding and visitor donations go some way to covering these expenses they can’t be expected to pay for everything, so inevitably, such attractions turn to promotional marketing to create a lucrative revenue stream. The promotional products on sale in museums and galleries sell in incredible numbers, helping the institutions themselves to maintain an effective business model all year round.

The same story is true in the nation’s sports stadiums. While few football, rugby and cricket clubs are non-profit organisations, clubs like Arsenal FC have a balanced financial model to uphold, and the sales of promotional products such as stationery like this in stadium gift shops help them to do so. Promotional merchandise is such a lucrative tool for football clubs in the UK that even a multi-million pound player signing will often recoup their value through branded shirt sales alone.

Making it memorable

So why can these institutions sell so many promotional products when your brand struggles to do so? The answer lies in the reason for visiting such places in the first place. A trip to a stadium, gallery, museum or even historical monument will be an enjoyable, memorable occasion and, more often than not, visitors will want to commemorate their trip with a branded keepsake. A memorable occasion is guaranteed to loosen a visitor’s wallet, so you’ll find that many of these attractions will locate their gift shops directly ahead of the exit…

‘That’s all well and good,’ you may very well be thinking, ‘but my company is hardly comparable to the Natural History Museum or Emirates Stadium. How are we supposed to be memorable enough to prompt a sale?’ That’s a very reasonable question, but promotional products have a slightly different role to play in the marketing activities of commercial companies and businesses. The products themselves need to be memorable in order for your customers to think of you in future, should the need for your services arise.

You can select promotional products that are practical, edible or entertaining, but whatever you pick, make sure that it will help your brand to stick in the minds of your customers for future reference. If you’re struggling to choose the appropriate products for your business from our online catalogue, make the most of this brainstorm assistant and we’ll recommend the best branded merchandise for you, no matter what you need it for.