4imprint, LLC

Posted: October 08, 2021 7 min read

What turns a branded product into favorite promotional item? Is it because the product is useful? Fun? Trendy?

The answer is: All three.

And that’s great news because it means there are as many reasons to use promotional items as there are types of branded products. Of course, it also means you have an overwhelming number of options available the next time you’re hunting for the best branded item for your promotion.

To lend a helping hand, we’ve collected some inspirational customer stories where they share the giveaways, gifts and circumstances that allowed them to make a connection, a memory or just bring a smile. Read on to find an idea or two for your organization.


Serving up more than just beverages

While promotional drinkware is a great way to offer a cool drink or a hot beverage, this favorite promotional item is capable of so much more.

  • “For our annual seminar, we put the pen and memo book into the mug, then added a teabag, individually-wrapped cookie, and a few chocolates and peppermints. Everyone loved them!” – Karen from the Mississippi Genealogical Society
  • “I ordered this mug to use as a base for my Alaska Outdoors Eco-Friendly gift set. A small shampoo bar, lip balm, tooth soap and toothbrush fit perfectly. It was such a hit at my last event! People loved to [sic] mug so much that several people purchased an extra (empty) mug as a souvenir and to give as gifts. I couldn’t be happier with this product!” – Christina from Resting Birch Face
  • “The visitors to our park were asking for a beverage vending machine. We didn’t want the litter or the maintenance to keep it stocked and working, so we put in a water cooler/bottle filler. For the people who didn’t bring their own water bottles to the park, we are selling the travel mugs and water bottles in our gift shop — and they are flying off the shelf!” – Susan from Marblehead Lighthouse
  • “I give out our insulated stemless wine glasses with a chocolate bar shaped like our logo and a small bottle of wine/champagne. Our customers LOVE the color!” – Lucinda from FM Title


Making memorable moments

Sometimes the best way to capture attention is to offer an item the creates a memory—or just makes someone say, “Oh, that’s cool.”

  • “Our students LOVE these LED zipper pulls. We add them to our college prize packs and they’re easily the most talked-about item!” – Jessica from Wayne State University
  • “We purchased these beach balls for our Summer of Fun Pool Parties that we hosted at our local community pool. They were so cute and all of the guests loved them! Was awesome seeing our logo on hundreds of beach balls in the pool!” – Olivia from Rummel
  • “We are a local farmers market nonprofit in Lincoln Park, MI. We are giving this [vegetable brush and peeler] to anyone who takes advantage of SNAP and Double Up Food Bucks food assistance programs at our market.” – Leslie from Lincoln Park Farmer’s Market
  • “We will be giving away a number of “swag” items at our library orientation table for incoming students. Pens and cleaning cloths will be for everyone, but we will have scavenger hunt type note cards for students to find different books in our collection. If they find the book and bring back the index card in the book we’ll give them a TechMate Duo Charging Cable. The mugs will be for staff and any small special giveaways throughout the semester. Great stuff!” – John from The University of Vermont Libraries


Sending a sign

When you want to get noticed, sometimes you have to make some noise. Or better yet, use a branded sign, banner or tent to capture the attention of everyone passing by.

  • “Thank you so much for the banner!! The Streets at Southpoint mall in Durham, NC has offered an empty store front for us to display and market our nonprofit organization, Musical Empowerment. The banner was the perfect addition to the space. Here are two of our proud leaders – Zora from our North Carolina Central University chapter and Yaas from our Hunter College chapter. The banner is high-quality and the perfect method for informing the public about who we are and what we do!” – Allison from Musical Empowerment
  • “The beaches of Tybee Island, GA are a federally protected wildlife habitat where endangered shore birds and sea turtles come to nest. We have beach rules meant to curb unsafe behavior and protect this habitat. To help get the word out to visitors and residents alike, we printed our beach rules on the 5×7 billboard magnet and gave those out to local hotels, vacation rental homes and anyone else who wanted some. They were wildly popular. We ran out of our initial supply of 2,000 and are ready to reorder.” – Michelle from Tybee Island
  • “The custom banner works perfect and people compliment the size and quality all the time.” – Emma from Tee’s Nuts
  • “The canopy event tent we ordered was awesome. Launched our business as a sponsor at a golf tournament for our friend’s foundation. Here’s Pam at the 7th hole closest to the Pin contest at the 9th annual Mckenna Claire Foundation Golf Tourney, supporting pediatric brain cancer research. Getting ready to give away samples of our cheese and cracker business along with some beer which was donated by our friends at Green Cheek Brewery.” – Bryan from The Cheese and Cracker Shop


Finding practical pens and pencils

Even in a seemingly all-digital world, people are always grabbing pencils and pens to scribble a note, jot down an idea or do a little doodling—which is why they top our list of best branded items for just about anyone.

  • “This [pencil] will be given out at our Back to School events to help kids and families prepare for the upcoming school year.” – Erin from Lead Free in the UP
  • “We are a dental office that offers the pens to our patients, use them within the office daily and give them out a [sic] community events, etc. Doctor loves them so much, he just asked me to order more! A good pen is hard to find :)” – Deb from Scenic River Dental
  • “We added 2 of the pens to each “Swag Bag” for our Annual Shred Day, in branded totes with face masks, Valentine candy, branded bottles of water, & other items from the charity for whom we were raising money. All of our clients brought all the shredding material they’ve collected over the year to be destroyed securely. We donated $1 per pound of shred material collected to a local charity called Seton Youth Shelters. They provide housing, counseling, & training to troubled & misplaced youth (ages 7 – 19) who are in dire need. We collected 1500 lbs., & thus donated $1500 to the charity. I did the best I could with the pen picture. :)” – David from JJSA Advisors Ltd.


Tell us your promotional win

Have you got a favorite promotional item? Share your story with us! Go to our #SwaggingRights page and tell us about the pens, charging cables or other giveaway that helped you grab attention.