Eco-Happy Branding Ideas For Earth Day

After witnes21646827sing the ravages of the 1969 massive oil spill in Santa Barbara, California, Earth Day founder, Gaylord Nelson, US Senator from Wisconsin, announced the idea for a “national teach-in on the environment”.  On April 22,1970, 20 million Americans took to the streets, parks, and auditoriums to demonstrate for a healthy, sustainable environment in massive coast-to-coast rallies.  Since then, Earth Day has reached into its current status as the largest secular observance in the world, celebrated every year on April 22.

So how can you and your company make a difference in support of this massive movement?  It’s simple!  Next time you are considering a branded giveaway, consider if those items are made from recycled materials and/or can be recycled after they outlive their usefulness.  Not every product category in the promotional products world is available with an eco-friendly option, but plenty are, so maybe it’s time to ask that question.

In the meantime, you can ponder a few of the following ideas – time-honored and new – to support this year’s Earth Day celebration.

  • Eco Core Golf Balls:  100% recycled material and features a rubber core from recycled tires
  • Eco Fleece Blanket: 70% virgin polyester / 30% Repreve® certified recycled polyester
  • Recycled Notebook:  Paperboard cover with 70 sheets of lined recycled paper
  • Eco Bike Bottle:  BPA / BPS-Free Recycled HDPE (high density polyethylene)
  • Bamboo Award:  Renewable and recyclable bamboo on black iron stand
  • Recyclable Pen/Highlighter:  Recycled paper & plastic
  • Eco Plastic Handle Bags:  40% recycled polyethylene, 100% recyclable

The number of eco-happy products offered in the advertising specialties industry is growing – not just because it’s a worthy cause – but because the demand is there with companies across the country that want their audience to know they have the same far-sighted regard for our planet as they do.  Use this year’s Earth Day celebration as a reason to get on board the eco-happy train!




Paying It Forward

yellow stripesThe cost of distributing a branded giveaway can only be justified if there is a measurable ROI.  Questions that should be asked and answered range from the cost-per-impression of the item to the length of time a recipient keeps the product, and even what happens to the gift once the customer discards it.  Fortunately, the Advertising Specialty Institute performs a lengthy study every year to give us the answers to these types of questions.

Branded merchandise remains less expensive per impression than most other forms of advertising.  In fact, the only form of advertising with a lower CPI (cost-per-impression) is internet advertising. But with advertising specialties, the investment is modest, more targeted and allows for much greater level of interaction with consumers than other forms of advertising, like TV, magazine and newspaper ads.

Another benefit of using promotional merchandise to market your brand is the staying power of those products.  Some items, such as calendars, can stay around for the entire year.  Other types of merchandise, especially health and safety products, last for 4 to 6 months.  Outerwear and USB drives hang around for over 8 months, and drinkware, bags, caps, office accessories and shirts last over 6 months. And if the recipient chooses not to keep the item, 63% give it to someone else.  So you get double-duty impressions from one item.  Compared to a 30-second commercial, that’s a lot of bang for your buck!

Finally, and I believe most importantly, promotional items sway consumer opinions.  The study shows half of the people who received a branded giveaway had a more favorable opinion of the advertiser who gave it to them.  And, even more impressive, 63% of the people who received a piece of outerwear with a logo had a more favorable opinion of the company.  If we can agree that consumers who have a positive opinion of a company will be more likely to buy that firm’s products or services, then promotional items have proven to be a good investment.

As always, the exact product selected for a marketing promotion or an incentive gift definitely matters and will affect the outcome of the program.  But with careful consideration of the audience, the right promotional item at the right price will provide a solid return on the corporate investment.

When It Comes To Branded Headwear, Think Beyond Twill

cable beanieWhile cotton and twill baseball caps have always been the “go to” choice when considering a hat for a branded giveaway, there are other styles and materials that should  be looked at when the cold weather hits.

Hats, as a category, enable advertisers to place their logo or marketing message in an ideal position for maximum exposure.  So why not take advantage of that exposure on hat styles that appeal to all ages and demographics?  There are fabrics that offer performance features like extra warmth or moisture wicking; and there are styles that appeal specifically to certain audiences, such as hunters, women, youth markets, golfers and sports enthusiasts.  A few examples:

  • Wool cable knit beanies come in a variety of styles from standard knit skull cap to those that offer ear flaps and pom poms.  They appeal to the youth market, outdoor enthusiasts and those who work outside.
  • Viscose wool herringbone newsboy caps are fashionable hats that never went out of style.  They can be seen on young professionals, corporate executives and youthful city dwellers.
  • Corduroy comes back every year in engineers caps, military caps and modified baseball caps.  These work best with the under-30 crowd, but depending on the cut and style, fashionable consumers of all ages would wear this comfy alternative.
  • Straw hats are available in classic men’s and ladies sun hats, fedoras, visors and cowboy hats.  For summer promotions, this is a popular choice with all age groups.
  • Microfiber caps offer breathability in the hot weather, and some styles are available with SPF ratings for sun protection.  Golfers and sports enthusiasts appreciate this popular cap choice in place of the many other twill caps they most certainly already own.

Depending on your audience and where the hat will be worn, thinking beyond the standard twill ball cap can set your brand apart from all the other companies that give away logo headwear.  Ask for choices – you’ll be surprised at the all the ways that branded hats can fit the bill!