As we get further into December the inevitable reviews of 2010 are already starting to emerge and the marketing world is no different. Brand Republic have been hosting their reviews of the last year which include the best and the worst of what has come out of the advertising agencies over the last 12 months, which includes ads for John Lewis and Nike on the nice list, while Jedward’s appearance for Nintendo and Tim Lovejoy for Giovanni Rana appear on this year’s naughty list.
One area that does stand out is the increasing diversity of online marketing, with many companies including Old Spice and Foster’s “going viral” with their campaigns. Landmarks moments and movies around Facebook are also noticeable as the social network builds in strength quickly turning it into an indispensable marketing force, and evolutions in Google Places have opened up a whole new online world for retailers looking to get the most out of the internet.
There have never been so many avenues open to those who are looking to promote their businesses, with digital marketing open to anyone with a broadband connection. Whether companies are looking to use advertising as a platform to build their brand or raise awareness of themselves in the marketplace, it is still important that their advertising efforts work in conjunction with their wider marketing strategy.
With companies pursuing more imaginative advertising and online viral campaigns, wider marketing efforts are increasingly turning towards giving their adverts more exposure rather than the company itself. This isn’t necessarily a new technique and it is something that the iconic advertisers such as Guinness have been doing for many years. With advertising in general moving towards more “water cooler moments” than brand awareness, the wider marketing effort is becoming more important than ever in reinforcing the core message and raising awareness of the brand, associating what might be a hugely successful campaign with the company that is producing it. With companies increasingly trying to outdo each other with memorable ads, the core brand message is becoming less important than getting noticed, and so the work of the wider marketing effort is having to perform the job that the adverts used to perform.
So how do you hammer your brand message home? By getting it out there for all to see. Promotional gifts and promotional products have traditionally been an important part of the marketing effort, but not necessarily linked to the advertising arm in any relevant way. With adverts now going for a more random but memorable approach, promotional gifts have evolved into items that are using the idea of the advert to enforce the brand. If an advertising campaign is proving popular, promotional gifts bearing the imagery of the ads can be a useful way of getting your brand into the hands of people who may be a fan of the ad but not necessarily have any allegiance to your brand. A promotional gift bearing your logo might just change that, as by owning an item adorned with the brand they are becoming more active in their interest than merely viewing an advert on their TV or computer.
As companies turn to fresh and imaginative ways of advertising their brand through digital media, the wider marketing effort cannot be underestimated when it come to enforcing the core brand. Grabbing people’s attention with a witty ad campaign is all very well, but it’s all for nothing if viewers can’t remember who produced it.
Promotional gifts are changing in the way they are used in marketing, but they can be a crucial way of converting those who like your style of your adverts into those who like the style of your brand. Getting viewers to interact with your brand will be a key way of converting interest into sales, and promotional gifts are a proven method of putting a physical brand item into the hands of your virtual, digital followers.
Alan writes articles on issues surrounding the promotional gifts industry for The Promotional Gifts Company. They are aimed at professionals in the marketing, promotional and events industries, as well as those who are looking for effective ways of motivating and incentivising their workplace. You can find other helpful articles at The Promotional Gifts Blog.