Corporate Gifts and Their Role In Business To Business Marketing
Corporate gifts as the term suggests are promotional items intended for the corporate market place. The term is a popular one within the promotional industry and is often interposed with the more standard term – promotional gifts. Within such a promotion the target audience remains the same, being buyers, key decision-makers and perhaps employees and suppliers but within a business-two-business or corporate environment.
A fundamental question when embarking on a promotional gifts campaign is to ask just what the promotional activity is intended to achieve. One is then be in a position to assess just how this aim or objective can be achieved and made as effective as possible. These aspects of the campaign need to be assessed against the question of whether the gifts within this marketing activity are to be used in a focused-way or simply as giveaways and ‘budget burners’.
Giveaways are used in a scatter-gun approach and this is commonly seen at exhibitions and trade shows offering buckets of items to anyone passing a stand. Gifts for such a promotion tend to be low-budget, high-volume items and offer little in the way of longevity and marketing message retention. It is virtually impossible to measure their effectiveness and return-on-investment (ROI).
The more focused the objectives for a promotional products marketing campaign, the higher the likelihood is of achieving outstanding results and making the promotion as effective as possible. Focusing gives a campaign its own momentum, helps to solidify a marcomms brief and provide the basis for analysis and accountability.
A general promotion may be instigated simply to generate awareness about a new product, service or even a business or organisation itself. However, within corporate environments, where resources including time are scarce, it becomes even more important to define specific campaign objectives.
A classic example would be the launch of a new product or service at an exhibition or trade show. Rather than using the gifts as giveaways they can be made more effective when used as part of a direct mail piece before an exhibition to drive a targeted client audience to the company stand or booth. This in itself offers a number of measurables including stand attendance. This approach could involve a double-bounce or ‘bait’ promotion whereby a higher value item is offered to visitors who sign-up for a post-show demonstration, purchase stock or commit to using the newly launched service.
The internet is today proving to be one of he fastest growing marketing mediums and within corporate environments promotional gifts are also being used to drive website activity. This in itself offers a number of data collection and tracking opportunities that a number of other mediums including space, television and radio advertising fail to offer to the same effective degree.