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Give swag to the right people

Printfection Blog


September 28, 2012

Like most people you’ve probably received a piece of promotional merchandise from a completely random company at some point, even if it was only a pen. If your experiences have been anything like mine, you’ve never given the merchandise or more importantly the company, a second thought if it wasn’t relevant to you.  As with any sort of marketing it’s crucial to identify people who actually impact your business before investing in them!

Let’s face it, any stranger will gladly accept something of value for free… I mean it’s FREE after all. But what happens later is what you really care about;  did that company-branded t-shirt grow your business at all, or did it just help someone sleep in a comfy outfit?  The truth is strangers don’t use your business, they don’t tell their friends about your awesome products, and they certainly don’t help make your company better.
Below I’ve corralled types of people who can and probably are making an impact on your company right this minute.  If you send a gift (free swag) to these people the impact and goodwill is long lasting and pretty darn amazing.


These people have already invested in you…
  • Evangelists- These are your version of Apple Fanboys.  They love your product and they loudly proclaim to all and sundry how awesome it is.  Send these people a gift and you’ll hear about it.  More importantly so will everyone else.
  • Disgruntled Customers- They happen; fix their problem and send an apology gift.  It’s a time honored tradition.
  • Beta Testers- These people do work for you… usually for free.  They make you better. Enough said.

Potential Customers

This is probably the most confusing group of people.  For swag to have impact here, they need to be really interested.  Let’s face it you don’t give a girl a diamond ring on a first date… don’t waste time and money on a complete stranger.
  • Potential customers who have visited your website- They know you, clearly they are looking for something.  Use swag to start a conversation.
  • Potential customers you’ve engaged in conversations.
  • Potential customers at an industry specific event.
  • People on your newsletter list.


These people deal with your customers, your systems and support you day in and day out.
  • Direct employees- These are the people who make your vision happen and keep the world going round.  Reward them for a job well done, anniversaries, and for goodness sake don’t make them a walking billboard unless they are manning your booth at a trade show or going on a field trip.
  • Vendors- Those people you pay who do wonderful work for you.  These are contractors and companies, reward them for a job well done.
When you reach the right people with the right swag your investment will come back to you.  When was the last time you were wow-ed by promotional merchandise?