When a customer says they want a unique promotional product to represent their brand, what they are saying is that they want an item that provides a positive emotional response in their audience. Maybe something new to the market, but more likely something their particular audience is not accustomed to receiving.
For instance, I imagine that there have been many highway safety kits, road atlases and tire gauges given away by car dealerships over the years. But how many times has a car dealership given a branded mobile phone holder or dual USB car charger? And, hopefully, the car owner would use the phone holder or car charger far more than a roadside safety kit, giving the car dealership the advertising value they are paying for by providing more “impressions” every time the driver gets in the car. Those items are not new, unique products, but they would likely be new to that audience, and therefore elicit a more positive response.
As a promotional products provider I have sometimes fallen into the trap of omitting product ideas in customer presentations that represent items I have sold many times in the past. I leave out options that I perceive to be “stale” or “overdone”, but just when I think I have put together a wonderful assortment of unique, creative ideas, my customer will ask for samples of the same item I consciously left out of the mix. Why? Because that customer has never used that particular item in a campaign and it represents a fresh idea in their market. (Note: when this happens, it’s not a proud moment for me)
Logo merchandise uniqueness can mean different things – a totally new product; a classic product with a new twist; or a product staple that is used in a new way aimed at a different audience. As it turns out, most of the time, the uniqueness truly is in the eye of the beholder. So consider what has been done in the past to excite your audience, and take another look at ideas that are “new to you”!