As any good marketing professional knows, building a brand and staying top of mind is crucial to the growth and success of any business.

We live and breathe this stuff in the promotional products industry, whether it’s educating clients on the power of promo in achieving their marketing goals, consulting with them on strategy or product choices for specific campaigns. A primary reason that promotional products work so well is the connection and engagement they create between the consumer and the brand.

It’s easy to get lost in the work of your business, the day-to-day of helping other companies be at the forefront of their customers’ minds. But it’s important for us to remember to take time to think about our own marketing strategies and how we will go about creating that connection and engagement with our customers.

You need to have a marketing strategy in place that will keep your business top of mind for your customers. This strategy is built around the methods that help you attract prospects. It’s how prospects become customers and customers grow their business with you.

When considering which marketing tools to engage in your strategies, there is one area that everyone in this industry should already be using: promotional products.

Self-promos, as so many of us refer to them, are something that every promotional products professional should be using to market their business. They are an essential part of any campaign, and you should use this opportunity to show your customers the value and experience they create.

As you engage our industry in your marketing strategy, you should be as intentional in your product choice and campaign as you are when consulting for your best customer. This means not putting something together at the last minute, as well as possibly creating different campaigns for different customer personas. It means doing things with purpose.

We know that end buyers like to experience and see real-world examples of promotional products in action. Self-promos are one way to weave this into your marketing strategy. Social media is another.

Social media creates opportunities to not only stay visible to your customers, but also to build relationships with them through engagement. This is a great space to share great examples of promotional products, whether that be something you stumble upon that inspires you or success stories from your customers’ campaigns (with permission, of course).

Sharing valuable and relevant content with your customers positions you as an expert and a resource. But there are other ways to do it off of LinkedIn or Instagram, including your own website and email campaigns.

Content marketing can seem daunting at first, but remember, you don’t have to do all of the content creation yourself. It can be as simple as repurposing and sharing content that already exists. If it didn’t originate with you, just make sure you have the right permission and give the right credit.

This is an area where PPAI can help. From articles to research and infographics, we create a ton of material that we want our members to repurpose and use for their benefit. I’d encourage you to specifically look at the resources available for you in the Promotional Products Work Toolkit. This is an agency-produced portfolio of marketing assets that is available for member use. It includes image and statistics-based graphics, as well as videos that can be used on various platforms.

Another way to share content with your buyers is to invite them to the Promotional Products Work Expo, to be held virtually on March 28. The invitation is a good reason to get in touch that will have your customer feeling special. If your customer accepts the invitation and attends, they will:

  • Experience content that elevates and educates on promotional products.
  • See real people sharing positive examples of promotional products in a nonsales environment.
  • Have the opportunity to view a product pavilion to get inspiration for their next project with you.

The Promotional Products Work Expo takes place on a buyer-safe platform. No pricing information will be shared, unless you opt in for clients to see list prices in the product pavilion. Best of all, you will have access to reports on what your buyer engaged with and liked so that you can personalize your follow-up outreach.

In all of the marketing efforts I’ve mentioned, personalization is a powerful element. Along with consistency and engagement, it’s the foundation of a successful marketing strategy for your promotional products business.

Remember, it’s absolutely crucial that you make time to work on, and not just in, your business. Having a varied marketing strategy in place will keep your company top of mind for customers.

Tucker is the vice president of revenue and expositions at PPAI.