Promotional Products Work: 14th edition
4imprint customers tell you how they have used promotional products to grab attention, grow their business, say ‘thanks,’ raise awareness or otherwise spread the word!
Welcome to the fourteenth edition of ‘Promotional Products Work’!
If you had told me a few years ago this little ebook would still be going strong 14 editions later, I probably would have chuckled. The concept seems almost too simple: Ask customers how promotional products have helped their organization; then make that information available to others. That’s really all we’re doing here. But the results have been nothing short of amazing.
This edition of Promotional Products Work is largely inspired by our #SwaggingRightsSM social media campaign. If you’re not familiar, check it out on our website or any of our social media sites. This is just one more way for us to help make your job easier so you can stress less and get back to your to-do list.
I’ve always believed in the power of promotional products, but your stories are the ‘proof in the pudding,’ so to speak. I’m so grateful to you for helping us create yet another collaboration thanks to you, people from all over the country (and beyond) are learning new ways to promote and extend their reach.
If you found these stories helpful, pay it forward by sharing this ebook with anyone you think could use a little promotional inspiration. And i hope you’ll keep sharing your success stories with us. We love hearing from you!
Table of Contents
- Booth buzz – page 3
- Build your brand – page 17
- For your cause – page 30
- Saying thank you – page 41
- Spread the word – Page 53
- Team unity – page 64
- The carrot – page 80
Promotional products might just be the best thing ever when it comes to making sure your booth is the one they visit. Here are some ways to make sure there is a well-worn path right to your booth.
We pass out the tumbler at various marketing events during the winter months. Our residents really love them because they can take their coffee to go in style!
LaToya from Baltimore, #123249, Two Tone Travel Tumbler
This 4′ wide table throw is perfect for smaller events where we do not need our full exhibitor setup. It fits perfectly over our bar height folding table. The height allows our staff to be standing or sitting on bar stools for more natural eye-level conversations. At larger events, it also works well for a beverage table throw for our coffee air-pots and water.
Nathaniel from Wichita, #105043, Fitted Demo Table Throw
We customized 250 totes for our fall event season. We gave away the bags as our event attendees went home for the evening. They have been raving about the bags! Everyone at the office is equally impressed!
Jasmine from Studio City, #124024, Norfolk Cotton Tote
We took these foam fingers to a trade show in Indianapolis and gave away 400 of them. People were coming to our booth and asking if we had more! We know to order more next year!
Caley from Fostoria, #136924-H, Foam #1 Hand
This was produced as a trade show give-away. We wanted something that would be useful and easily portable. Everyone loves them. Several folks wanted more than one. Sorry y’all, come see us at the next trade show and/or job fair if you want one.
Shannon from West Chester, #7868, Aluminum Bottle/Can Opener
I am using these sunglasses as giveaways at local job fairs to help recruit summer lifeguards.
Matt from Des Plaines, #139487, Fresh Light Sunglasses
I gave these magnets out at a business fair. It was unique and well received. I had some on our table showing the middle out to show the frame and most people wanted one. I plan on keeping these on hand. My regular customers have loved them and I have given them out like business cards as well.
Deena from Apache Junction, #111304, Bic® Magnetic Photo Frame
We love this little giveaway! We ordered them for a local health fair giveaway but will give to our clients all year long to keep those germs away!
Chad from Dyersburg, #106987, Hand Sanitizer
We ordered these to-do notepads for an event we were speaking at. The attendees loved them and we were very happy to provide something of value to prospective clients.
Forrest from Portsmouth, #83025, Scratch Pad
Our new display is perfect for camp fairs! Its so lightweight and easy to travel with, and it attracts fairgoers as they walk down the halls! Really helps to set us apart from other programs.
Coleman from Mercersburg, #107865, Geometric Junior Pop-Up Tabletop Display
We ordered these embroidered portfolio pieces for our first advisory board meeting at one of the world’s largest
Legal Technology conferences. We were able to add several print marketing pieces to each one, and they quickly turned into one of the hottest pieces of ‘swag’ at the conference!
Sarah from Chicago, #85015, Zippered Vinyl Portfolio
We needed a way to get our name in front of contractors and found that a carpenter pencil was extremely popular with the demographic. Since receiving our pencils we have attended several trade shows and have found that the pencils are extremely popular at each one!
Dustin from Russia, #3552, Carpenter Pencil
We decided to customize our aprons with two spots of artwork. Our logo was on the front of the bib and a then we added a cute pun on the pocket. Our volunteers looked great in their logo aprons, and many guests of the California Artisan Cheese Festival asked about how they could buy the aprons!
Michelle from Windsor, #133545, Cotton Cooking Apron
Build Your Brand
From small business to big business, university to nonprofit, the name of the game is to make sure people know who you are and what you’re about. Promotional products work when it comes to building your brand.
See this wagon full of frisbees? We marched in a parade in matching tie dyed red/white/blue shirts walking and carrying dogs, throwing frisbees into the crowd the whole way.
Ginger from Oklahoma City, #17030, Sport Flyer – 5″
I sent this desk calendar out to my clients. I wrote a special message to each client and tied a beautiful gold ribbon on each calendar. I have received texts and emails telling how much they appreciated receiving this gift.
Margaret from Sheridan, #113227, Valoy Desk Calendar
We ordered the campfire ceramic mug to go in a gift basket for our media contacts during our major event of the year. We paired it with hot chocolate, fancy marshmallows, some nice chocolate, and information about our event.
Everyone loved them and we got to give a very classy-looking basket for an affordable budget!
Hayley from Oklahoma City, #311, Campfire Ceramic Mug
As a sponsor for a Winter Solstice event, we (Clementine Creative) provided the cocktails for the night. We concocted the “Oh My Darlin’,” a creative and delectable cocktail consisting of whiskey, wine, and of course, clementine! The drinks were a hit, beautifully accented by the on-theme stir sticks we purchased from 4imprint! Reading “Stir Things Up with Clementine,” they acted as a great conversation starter to help us network with guests at the event. Cheers!
Merissa from Marietta, #115515, Crystal Stir Stick
I brought these to a local book signing at Christmas. It was a great icebreaker to encourage people to the table. I love that they’re affordable enough to give away, but still nice quality.
Pamela from Milpitas, #7702-ST, Curvy Stylus Twist Pen
My clients who pay with a check know the junk drawer where I keep my pens. I replaced my old pile of pens with only my massage pens, so when they reach for a pen, surprise! They get a fun pen AND they get to keep it. Good times!
Kathy from Rockport, #39152, Bic® Clic Stic® Pen
I am using this product as a recruitment tool. I take them to college campuses with me and find that the students are always needing extra flash drives. Plus the bright colors and the fact that it is on a key chain is a plus!
Molly from Marshfield, #7409, Swing USB Drive
I’m a singer-songwriter and had brown leather-like KOOZIES made with my artist logo on them, since I’ve always been a fan of brown leather. I really wanted merchandise that reflected some of my personality and would help me stand out from every other musician on the block. People are LOVING the uniqueness of these! I’ve had no shortage of interest, and anticipate having to make more in the near future!
Stephanie from Dallas, #145317, KOOZIE® Leather-Like Can Kooler
Belleview Dentist Office is a new office in the Denver Area. Directly in front of our office is a dog walking area. We see several people walking their dogs so we decided to try and capture them as potential patients. We created a custom sign offering them to stop by and receive a free gift… When our furry friends stop by with their owner, we give them this cute doggie bowl full of doggie treats. It has helped improve our patient flow…
Tammy from Denver, #141540, Collapsible Pet Bowl
We’re using these Utility Totes for giveaways. Filling them with car-care essentials, brochures for our auto repair shop, a coffee mug, and a gift certificate for our shop as well. These gift baskets go to local churches, schools, sports groups, bands, etc. in our community to support our local community and bring business back to our shop. The tote is sturdy and can be used in a vehicle, in a child’s toy room, in a pantry, in a living room, anywhere to contain loose times.
Linda from Schererville, #140481, Life in Motion Compact Utility Tote
We used them as swag at a garden party! It was a hot day and the perfect item for the theme of the party!
Megan from Wilmington, #5137, Hand Fan
We’re using our branded PopSockets to give out to students in our field! We have a program where our members visit vascular ultrasound programs to speak to the students, and we will be giving these away to them! It will definitely help increase our exposure and brand awareness with the next generation of members.
Timothy from Lanham, #126487, PopSockets® Phone Stand
For Your Cause
Whether the mission is a nonprofit, school store or fundraising, if you need money, promotional products work.
We are partnering with the Child Advocacy Center to present Burgers and Cheers, an annual fundraiser for the organization. This group makes it possible for abused children to tell their story to medical professionals and law enforcement one time. The session is recorded for future reference. It’s so sad that this is an issue in our society at all but we are very proud to partner with them.
Vicki from Springfield, #9764 , Mardi Gras Pen
These folders will be used to attract and promote our fundraising endeavors to potential funders.
Jason from Burlington, #144146, Linen Paper Two-Pocket Presentation Folder
We held a fundraiser and this item was part of a swag bag of giveaways. The bag included some other donated items, but this piece was our big contribution with our logo/name. We wanted to go with a compact item, but something useful! Who can’t use a flash drive! And now every time our clients use it, they are reminded of our organization and the event.
Anonymous, #101227, Flow Flash Drive
We printed tumblers with our school logo and landscape to sell as a class fundraiser. It was a super unique and popular item.
Anonymous, #120951, Denali Travel Tumbler
Nonprofit charity fundraiser. The glasses were loved by young and old. We added a sticker to the package asking for people to take pics in their glasses and post online. It not only allowed us to raise money but also get exposure for our charity. Glasses were perfect!
Jessie from Mechanicsville, # 110925, Airman Aviator Sunglasses
These were used for our annual auction, we placed the items people bought in them and handed them out at checkout. It worked great and they were sturdy enough to handle heavy items. Plus it put our name out there!
PJ from Everett, #106836, Value Grocery Tote
We used these glasses as a promo to give away to our participants and sponsors for a beer and wine-tasting fundraiser. They were a big success!
Charley from Norfolk, #139457, Craft Beer Tasting Glass
We run a foundation in my daughter’s memory that donates art supplies to kids in cancer treatment. Here is a group of 7th graders at her school showing off their Lucy Belle’s Rainbow swag bags.
Beverly from Bala Cynwyd, #113303, Road Runner Sportpack
We used our cups for swag to give out at a career fair. As you will also notice from the picture, we are selling pies during the holidays from a new branch of our company, Happy Pie Company. $5 of every pie goes to charity.
Gabby from Bryan, #110198, Mood Stadium Cup
Our church youth group is selling these ornaments to help fund a national youth gathering trip next summer. Our church family fell in love at first sight with these beautiful ornaments, and our youth are well on their way to an amazing Gathering in Houston 2018!
Dawn from Medina, #115927, Round Shatterproof Ornament
Saying Thank You
Here are creative ways to say thanks to volunteers, applaud hard workers for a job well done or recognize an anniversary.
Loved these for thank-you products from our business! Put them with a jar of peanuts and they were perfect!
Karley from Wayland, #39134, Jar Opener
We wanted to give our board an item that would be useful and compact. We realized we are always looking for umbrellas. We found the arc folding umbrella to be the perfect fit! It fits great in a laptop bag, which makes it available for that unexpected rain storm!
Jerry from Deerfield, #105263, Folding Umbrella with EVA Case
Our after school staff loves our new jackets. This was a staff-appreciation gift.
Jan from Paulding, #114135, Colorblock Hooded Jacket
Our outgoing IEEE CEDA President, Shishpal Rawat, gave these sharp jackets as a gift to our executive committee in recognition of their service to the council. They were a big hit!
Jennifir from Gainesville, #116920, Eddie Bauer Waterproof Jacket
We used the jars for our Christmas Thank you gifts for our community partners. We filled them full of premium mixed nuts and paired it with a small silver scoop.
Latrisha from Vernal, #1462, Candy Jar
We purchased the Latte Mug as a gift for our customers to say thank you for a wonderful year of business with them. Now they can warm up this winter with a hot cup of coffee or tea and think of us!
Erin from Conshohocken, #120457, Ombre Tall Latte Ceramic Mug
For the second year in a row, these Pub Glasses have been a hit at our annual holiday luncheon. Our luncheon branding really shines with the large imprint area, and our associates have commented on how they love watching their pub glass collection grow each year!
Monique from South Windsor, #306, Brew Pub Glass
Our employees were so excited to learn we would be giving out these Roll Up Fleece Blankets for our quarterly safety award. Many departments are very cold in our factory and they all cheered at our last monthly meeting when we announced these cozy fleece blankets would be our giveaway. Let’s just hope they don’t get so comfy they all fall asleep on the job, though!
Amanda from Mansfield, #105396, Roll Up Fleece Blanket
We are using these cards to show employee appreciation for ALL employees birthdays. We are giving them a $10
Walmart/Sam’s gift card in with the card.
Jennifer from Winston Salem, #120529, Birthday Appeal Greeting Cards
This is the item we selected to be handed out to the Volunteers at Brunswick Volunteer Fire Company that met their hourly requirements for the year 2017. This will be done at our upcoming banquet.
Robin from Brunswick, #108024, Coastline Cooler
We are using the stickers on a treat bag to give to staff, celebrating 20 years as a level 2 trauma center.
Tami from Saint Cloud, #106607, Value Sticker by the Roll
Spreading the Word
Help spread the word about your special campaign—from a simple community reminder to public safety.
We love using our tote bags to give away cleanup kits to neighborhoods and schools in our community. Everyone loves these bags because they are sturdy and easy to reuse once the event is over. The front pocket makes it easy to share program information or smaller supplies so they don’t get lost in the larger bag. We pack these full with supplies and haven’t had any issues with tears or breaking.
Carmen from North Charleston, #111202, Matte Laminated Front Pocket Shopper Tote
We, Florida Association of the Deaf, celebrated our 100th Anniversary… These glasses were given out during our post-event dinner and they were surprised and pleased to receive a blue glass with #FAD100 (our conference theme) along with our motto (“Honor the Past, Cherish the Present and Shape the Future”) and the date of our conference on the one side of the glass. On another side of the glass, it says “We Made It!”…
Donna from Saint Augustine, #108810, Pint Glass
We’re using the pens to spread awareness of our organization, AFTD and the disease we focus on, FTD. FTD is a rare disease process that results in progressive damage to the temporal and/or frontal lobes of the brain. Both people who do and don’t know who we are and what FTD is, love the pens and take them every time. Thank you!
Bridget from Wayne, #39152, Bic® Clic Stic® Pen
We run community centers across the city of Boston and now our staff are all well-identified with our photos IDs on our new 4imprint lanyards that include the name of our organization.
Sandy from Roxbury Crossing, #6226, Lanyard with Neck Clasp
Our company has employee resource groups. We decided we would help our resource group with at least one of those New Years resolutions everyone makes. Part of getting fit includes staying hydrated. This Vacuum Bottle is just the ticket. The members love it because it’s not bulky and the employee resource group logo reminds them we’re there for support.
Christine from Bartlesville, #126434, h2go® Force Vacuum Bottle
We use our stickers to give to the children that visits our police department or when we attend events. The smiles on their faces and the way they act as we ride by or to see us in public is so amazing. The fact that it has junior officer on the stickers really makes the kids want to be a officer and not so afraid of officers as some can be. Thank you for helping us put the smile on the kids faces and for sharing love through our stickers. I hope you find our story inspiring as we did.
Shauntinae from Brookhaven, #107168-JO, Lapel Sticker by the Roll – Junior Officer Badge
During the week of January 15th-20th our university hosted a MLK Week of Service. As a reward to all of students who did a community service project and were in attendance at our home men’s and women’s basketball game on January 20th, we gave them these notebooks, as “Dream” books.
Grace from Pembroke, #102125, All-in-One Mini Notebook
Grant County Prospectors hold an annual reception for New Mexico Legislators in Santa Fe. This year our invitation was tucked into the flyer pocket! It caused a solid response for our party. Lots of fun watching people open their invite!
Laura from Silver City, #5975, Fold Up Flyer
We will be handing these pens out at our local Heart Walk Expo in March. By doing so, we are raising awareness for our organization and raising awareness for congenital heart defects, the number one birth defect in the United States.
Kim from Utica, #6551, Javelin Pen
Heading out to a community event in style, helping to promote a #tobaccofreeOC
Natalie from Lake Forest, #109494, Risky Business Sunglasses
If you’re looking to outfit your team with a unified look, trying to build morale, or you want to create walking billboards, promotional products get the job done.
Travel bags for our Forest Health and Safety Officers. Appreciation for their commitment to ensuring our employees have the safest work environment possible.
Anonymous, #138920, Bayfield Duffel Backpack
We are a high school hockey team and we love providing our families and fans with the latest gear!
Kelli from Shrewsbury, #120512, Pom Pom Spectator Beanie
Every year we give out something to our swimmers on our team and this year we did ball caps. In previous years we have done towels or bags. We had so many parents who wanted them too that we ordered enough for the swimmers and to sell. It is our hope that once all the caps sell it will cover the entire cost of the purchase even with giving half away free…
Jennifer from Shreveport, #103288, Washed Cap
Gift for the team to celebrate the good results from previous year and start the new year focused.
Anonymous, #8189, Deluxe Travel Duffel
We have a team of people who have chosen to give a year of their life to serve the community. When everyone reaches the halfway milestone we order them a jacket with the team logo. It is always a hit! New team members ask repeatedly when they can get a jacket like the returning folks.
Abby from Greenville, #120156, Crossland® Soft Shell Jacket
We attached key blanks to the 4Imprint Key Chains. We hung the keychains on a Christmas tree and had each staff person select a keychain. They then used the attached key to open the lock and win a cash prize. There were
2 winning keys and 130 blanks.
Anne from Westlake, #1097, Anodized Carabiner Keyholder
We created custom Bistro mugs and put our annual employee bonus checks inside them along with a signed thank you note from all the company officers. We also used some of these mugs as thank you gifts for our top hotel referral teams.
Chuck from Seattle, #114323, Zapata Bistro Ceramic Mug
The compass key chains were a HUGE hit, our team loved them. Our theme for the year is move the right direction and these are the perfect reminder to see each day to make the right choice for the customer and the company.
Anonymous, #109455, Oval Compass Keychain
Our small community healthcare center always provides a small token gift each holiday season. As a way to motivate teamwork, we order lanyards for everyone.
Sandra from Fall River, #110303, Hang in There Lanyard
We were able to provide a super soft chenille blanket to every member of the Wolfpack! It was a special gift that each athlete will have the entire season to bring them the warmth of the team!
Anonymous, #8227, Heavenly Soft Chenille Blanket
We used the Pedometers for Eat, Drink, Sleep Be Healthy Challenge at work.
Christi from Morrisville, #110203, Value In Shape Pedometer
I always keep $10 gifts and gift cards in my office. Anytime my supervisors or staff want to recognize someone for going out of their way they give them a gift. Everyone does a great job giving these when they are deserved. These gifts really mean a lot to people!
Karen from Louisville, #6729, Hanes® Tagless® T-Shirt
We give our reps a small gift each month as a token of appreciation. This helps boost the morale of our department.
Anonymous, #123675, Mini Watering Can Blossom Kit
Our staff loves your Micropique Sport-Wick Polo shirts! At the end of the summer, I order our staff shirts and the first day of school we pose for our school photo. This was our fourth year ordering shirts from 4imprint, everyone loves the way they fit, the color choices are great and they wear beautifully! Thank you for a great product-Your shirts help us look our best at Shallotte Middle School!
Mary from Southport, #116288, Micropique Sport-Wick Polo
Each year we recognize 25 people in our store for Making our Customers Lives Shine Brighter! The company sends them a certificate but we like to make them feel extra special by giving them a Swag Bag! The cup was an absolute hit! Thank you for helping us make our teams celebration shine a little brighter!
Erin from Boston, #105869, Spirit Tumbler
Increase participation, improve registration rates and maybe even generate additional revenue. When you’re looking for that ‘carrot,’ look for promotional products.
To promote our new smoothie offerings we gave away earbuds after purchasing for 3 days. It was a huge success and we have tripled our breakfast sales!
Anonymous, #123135, Color Dot Retractable Ear Buds
We are property management and so we offered a free blanket to anyone that came in to fill out an application. Jodie from Columbia, #105396, Roll Up Fleece Blanket
We had t-shirts printed to sell at our coffee shop! We offered a FREE large beverage with purchase. Now, our brand is being marketed by our regular customers out and about.
Anonymous, #6729, Hanes® Tagless® T-Shirt
Handed our promotional items out to individuals that could possibly send referrals our way.
Anonymous, #128424, Cell Phone Power Bank
Loyalty club promotion. With the purchase of the bag, the customer has access to special sales.
Camilla from Clear Lake, #106836, Value Grocery Tote
We use these on all of our open house signs for events to draw more traffic.
Brittany from Cape Coral, #16053, Balloon – 11″ Standard Colors
We use the mugs each morning to serve coffee, tea, etc. to our bed and breakfast guests. Each guest takes home a mug when they stay with us for the first time. We’ve given away about 90 mugs to guests, and to people who come to tour our Bed and Breakfast. The photo is a breakfast photo with the mug front and center.
Paul and Bette from Mansfield Center, #111699, Value White Coffee Mug
We used our hoodies as a giveaway for certain members of our online community!
Sarah from Kress, #101579, Jerzees® NuBlend Hooded Sweatshirt
Our advisers LOVE these tumblers. We’re using them as an office initiative to cut back on paper cups for water. They look fantastic on our desks and the water stays cold all day! It makes an impressive gift when onboarding new advisers as well.
Katie from Charlotte, #133885, Yowie Vacuum Travel Tumbler
We are planning on recruiting future geographers with these luggage tags!
Megan from Normal, #109188-G, Destination Luggage Tag – Globe
I have a start up coffee roaster and I am giving away a mug with every order. Customers love the mugs! Several have called it their “new favorite mug”. Thanks so much for helping me make happy customers!
Peter from Kemp, #7001, Challenger Grande Mug
We love handing out our branded lip balm to customers when they purchase products. It’s an incredible product for constantly reminding our customers about our brand and business, especially through the winter where lips are so chapped.
Nicholas from Mequon, #122135, Lip Balm Tub
We used these umbrellas for our open house RSVP gift and it was a wonderful hit! The guests loved it! I can’t wait to choose the gift for our next open house!
Keshini from Windermere, #106349, Economy Auto Opening Umbrella
We used these bracelets as a giveaway as part of our Kick Butts Day event, a national tobacco prevention event at
Springfield Schools in Vermont. We had a pledge wall that students could sign to join the movement to #BeTheFirst generation to end tobacco smoking. Students who signed the pledge wall were given a bracelet that had #BeTheFirst on it.
Beth from Springfield, #124136, Silicone Twist Bracelet
Share your success story!
Have you found success with your promotional products? Share your expertise by visiting 4imprint.com/SwaggingRights and clicking the #SwaggingRightsSM button in your order history. Submit your photo with a description of your story. We’d love to share it with others via social media and maybe even in our next edition of “Promotional Products Work”!
See more ideas and past editions of 4imprint’s “Promotional Products Work!” at 4imprint.com/EBook