One thing that we learned over the past few years is that Branded Merchandise can really impact your culture, your messaging, and your bottom line. We know that because, during a time that we could not meet in person, thousands of successful companies reached out to their teams to deliver some “marketing joy” to them while they worked from home. It helped to create a team atmosphere when we could not physically be together. It helped to raise the stature of branded merchandise in the eyes of consumers because nearly all of us saw the power of “doing promo right” play out right before our eyes.
But what happens now that many of us are going back to “normal?”
It would be a real shame to lose the lessons we have learned. Branded merchandise (when done right) has shown that it has the power to lift people up and affect behavior. So now that we are getting back to “normal,” how can you use branded merchandise to create change, build the team, and grow sales?
Let’s talk about how to create a promotion with a purpose.
Determine the Goal
This may sound basic, but it’s foundational. If you don’t know what you want to create, how can you create a campaign around it? Do you want to increase sales or ask people to donate? Determine the behavior that you want to drive. Then you can build your promotion around that! At Hasseman Marketing, our latest mailer is designed to not only increase sales (that is always good right?) but to raise awareness for eco-friendly options in the marketing space. We want to show that you can make a big impact on marketing while decreasing our impact on the environment.
Create the Theme
If you want to affect real change, build that into the theme. Doing branded merchandise right means you don’t just slap your logo on something. Sure…you can do that. But consider the amazing branded merch you love to wear. Most of the time, you are not excited to rep a shirt with one of your vendor’s logos on it. When you create it with a message, you are more likely to want to spread the word. Creating a theme can help you spread the word in a more effective way.
For our mailer, we wanted to create a theme that could be inspirational, and let our customers know that they could start small. So our theme is “Try a little harder to do a little better.” Then we spent the time creating some cool artwork (that did incorporate our logo) to help spread the message.
Select the Vehicles
Now that you have the goal and the theme, it’s time to select the vehicles that you will put your message on. For our new message, we focused on items that all have an eco-friendly impact. From our Allmade t-shirt to our Sustainabalm lip balm, all the items we selected showed that you could create a cool promotional campaign while still being conscious of the environment.
Create the Call to Action
Now that you have done the work to create a cool and powerful campaign, it’s time to tell people what to do! What action do you want people to take? Now is the time to tell them. That might be asking them to donate or to ask them to scan a QR code to head to our online store. You have made this effort to get their attention. Now that you have it, don’t waste it! One our mailer, we put a postcard in the box to explain each product. On the postcard, we included a postcard to take them to our online shop for people to order.
People who are new to sales struggle with this moment when it’s time to “ask for the sale.” They have gone all the way through the process, gotten the meeting, had a nice conversation with the prospect…and then it stops. While it might feel weird to “do the ask,” it’s actually strange not to do it now. If you don’t direct your client where you think they should go…then why have you wasted their time?
Deliver and Follow Up
Whether you ship the package or hand-deliver this “marketing joy,” it’s time to get them in the hands of your clients and prospects. And while you have done the amazing, proactive work of creating a work of art…now can be the most powerful step. It’s time to follow up.
“The fortune is in the follow-up.” This is a sales maxim that is powerful because it’s true. You have created a cool marketing piece that is sure to affect human behavior. But here is a little secret. Humans are busy. And they are easily distracted. They might be dazzled by your package and totally interested, but something urgent has come across their desk and it took them away from it.
Create a disciplined follow-up plan to keep in touch with your prospects if you want the best results. You don’t have to be overbearing, but it’s imperative to follow up. If you don’t, you will be wasting a lot of time and resources. And let’s face it, if you have come this far, you have done it because you have a purpose. You have a mission. Now is the time to act like it. If it’s important enough to create this…then it’s important enough to follow up!
If you want to learn more about the products in our campaign, you can check out the shop we have created here. Please let us know if we can help you create a promotion with a purpose for your organization. We would love to help!
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