7 Traits That Separate Good Promotional Products from the Great

Share This Post

Great promotional products are the key to success for every business.

Imagine this scenario – your company is going to sponsor an event that your target audience will be attending. You have spent months trying to curate the perfect customer experience for them so that they can learn all about your brand, and gain their trust & loyalty.

The million-dollar question is: how will you get the attendees to remember the alluring brand experience after the event is over?

Short answer: with the help of great promotional products. And we don’t mean promo items like key chains and pens that will be tossed in the drawers and forgotten. We are talking about high-level items that will embed themselves in the mind of the attendees and increase the shelf life of your event efforts.

Want to learn what are the central characteristics that separate good promotional items from great ones? Keep reading!

The 7 Traits that Make a Promotional Products Great


You don’t want to spend your precious money on a marketing item that will go straight to the customer’s trash can, now, do you? Therefore, you have to make sure that the recipient will actually USE the product. 

How to do that? Research, research, and research a bit more! You should know the needs and requirements of the markets inside out. Find out what they care about, what their values are, how they spend their time, etc.

This will help you create a small list that you can narrow down until you find a promo item that your clients will love to use and will result in sales success. Ask your promo item designers & makers to choose something that will bring home and use. 

From tech products to kitchen items such as coffee makers, the whole world is your canvas and the audience is your muse. 

High Quality

The next trait that you need to ensure is the quality of the promo item. It goes without saying, really – the sales items should be durable and of high quality. This seems like an obvious point but many content companies overlook this trait in favor of low costs.

You have to remember that the promo item is the physical representation of your business in the hands of the prospect and will create an impression on the minds of the consumer. If it is of poor quality, that would have a bad effect on your company’s reputation and image.

Quality is certainly not something that you can compromise on. Your ultimate goal should be that the product stays with the consumers for as long as possible. This can only happen if you give out physical products that are durable and are of high quality. 

It is better to run a battery of tests in order to create a remarkable product, instead of having that product break down while the client is using it.


Promotional items are all about IMPRESSIONS. The number of times your brand will be seen by the prospects will directly affect the bottom line.

Whether your promo item is seen by the same person when they sit down at their desk every day, by others who come into contact with a person wearing your branded t-shirt, or by hundreds of people at a party in the form of a speaker or something else, you need to pick something that will be displayed prominently at all times.

You should place a strong emphasis on a positive customer service experience. Make sure that you select such an item that the target audience will hang on, show off, use, and be proud of. It should be something that creates feelings of empathy in them. 

It will always remind them of your business, and they will all turn to you when they need your services. You can go with short-term use items as well such as branded snacks or drinks, especially at a marathon or any other event where the attendees will be thirsty or hungry, and you will be there to save the day!

Well Designed 

Even if your promo item checks off all the above basic characteristics, but lacks in design, all your efforts will go to waste. A product that is poor in design will not gain the attention of the recipients, no matter how useful or durable it is. 

From color to font, everything needs to be on point for your promo item to be successful. If a product is attractive and increases the curiosity levels, the recipient will be more likely to keep it close and use it, especially when it comes to apparel such as t-shirts, scarves, hats, etc. 


The critical role of training people so that they would have effective networking skills is very important. However, what will cement a professional relationship with your client? A desirable promo item.

The design and durability of your items should go hand in hand with the needs of your target audience. For instance, if the target audience is children, your custom promotional items should be colorful, bright, and flashy.

Consider the location, the event, and the target audience while crafting the perfect complex products. Keep the needs of the customer base and the clients in mind. If you are targeting Gen Z, ensure your promo gift items match their interests, such as power banks, Bluetooth headphones, digital products, etc. 

If you are targeting professionals, keep their skills in mind. For instance, for business services salespeople, you can hand out branded briefcases in which they can keep their documents, samples, etc.


Business leaders and business experts attend many events, seminars, conferences, etc. each year. They get tens, if not hundreds, of promo items each year. What will make you and your company stick out in the minds of the business class? A unique, creative, and viable product. 

Plain old pencils, pens, USBs, letter openers, etc. are not very effective because they are one of the oldest marketing items, and they don’t appeal to the customers anymore. Does this mean you shouldn’t give these items as promo gifts?

Certainly not. You can still give them out, but only if you add a creative twist to them. For instance, instead of giving out lead pencils to business owners that will end up in the back of a drawer, go with mechanical pencils that are more appealing.

Better yet, instead of pencils, hand out phone cases with your company’s logo on them. Make the case pretty enough and you won’t even put a logo on it – the users will show the cover off to other people themselves. 


The last but certainly not the least characteristic that a high-quality, appealing promo item should have is relevance. A relevant promo item is one that helps connect you with your target audience more effectively.

For instance, if the target audience is people from the health industry, go with branded pill holders. For the insurance industry, you can give out insurance card holders. If your prospective clients are parents or kids, you should give out branded school kits such as lunch boxes, bags, water bottles, etc.

Focus on building personal relationships while you make a purchase decision regarding the promo items in the role of a successful salesperson. You should have a strong sense of your company’s privacy policy as well as the desires of your customers to make a great choice.

Get Great (Not Just Good) Kits

It can be hard to find promo items that check all the boxes. Nevertheless, Inspire has designed hundred of promo items and kits that do. Here are just three of our most popular welcome kits that are perfect for your company!

Cactus Kit

Denver advertising agency ‘Cactus’ welcomes its new employees with a kit that includes branded items like a custom t-shirt, a pen, USB and a beautiful book, which outlines the history, culture, and values of the company.

The company uses a custom copper letterpress to personalize the welcome letter, which can be transformed as a nameplate later on.

Interad Kit

Based in Chicago, Braintree is a division of PayPal that specializes in web and mobile payments for numerous e-commerce companies.

They welcome its new hires with a swag kit which includes a matte-black customized t-shirt, a hoodie, a water bottle, a backpack, and a diary.

Ogilvy & Mather Kit

Ogilvy & Mather, one of the leading Advertising and PR brands, gives a beautiful red-colored welcome box to its new hire.

Known as “Induction Box” the welcome box offers a short book by David Ogilvy’s “ The Eternal Pursuit of Unhappiness and his popular eight habits.

Other than the A5 Red note short book, it includes a metal slinky, USB, and a yellow pencil.


Q. How do I make sure my promotional products hit all the traits on this list?

A. Here at Inspire, we can help you design the very best promotional items for your target audience. Click here to order now!

Q. Why is it important to have great promotional products?

A. Because there are so many promo items out there that without exceptional products, your company’s marketing dollars will go to waste. For the success of your clever marketing strategy, it is paramount for your promo items to stick out among the rest. 

Q. How much money will great promotional products cost me?

A. Shortly speaking, the price range will vary depending on the product – but the extra money is worth it. As promotional product experts at Inspire, we can tell you it is well worth the extra money to make your promos great. 

Those few extra dollars could turn into a potential loyal customer who will keep coming back for years. 

Great Promotional Items Closing

Giving out promo items is one of the common industry practices all over the world, especially the American industry. With the help of the right promotional products, you can transform the face of your business and increase brand awareness. 

Promotional items allow your company to get a foot in the door – how effective and useful that product is, determines whether you get the door open or not. An exceptional and memorable promo item is one that has the core characteristics that we have mentioned above. 

Do your promotional items have all the qualities that we have mentioned in the list? If yes, way to go people! If not, then you can use this article as a blueprint to improve your company’s promo items. 

What other qualities do you think custom promo items should have? Let us know in the comments below!