Trends in promotional products do actually exist, with some items going in and out of fashion faster than you can say “hey, where did you get that cool yoyo?”.
There are obviously mainstays within the fields of promotional items, things like silicone wristbands and custom pens (ranked 3 and 10 below respectively), but technological items and others often experience waves of popularity dependent on other factors like cultural phenomena and trends. This is true of many things in society, with a recent report of US baby names seeing massive growth in names like Khaleesi, Theon and Daenerys, based on the popularity of the Game of Thrones TV series of HBO.
Before we present the list of the top 10 promotional products of 2014, please do keep in mind that any promotional product you consider buying for your business should be carefully considered. As we have discussed in another blog post here, and in our guide to promotional products, careful consideration is needed when spending money to ensure that the items you are buying are actually right for your target market and campaign objectives.
10. Custom printed beach towels – get people to lie down on your brand!
Custom towels have proven to be very popular in NSW, WA and QLD over the past 18 months, with continued strength of enquiries forecast for 2014 and beyond. The increasing availability of full colour customisation options has allowed companies to really design some fantastic custom towels. Most commonly used as an item of merchandise, but also included in certain beach and lifestyle related membership packs, or for VIP customers at retail outlets, custom beach towels offer the chance to print a brand or message over a very large space (150cm x 75cm), in full colour, and to ensure that this message is highly visible throughout the spring and summer months especially.
9. Custom USB sticks – stick em up!
Dropping down the list somewhat are custom USB sticks. With the advent of cloud technology and social media, fewer companies are finding a need for custom USB’s in amongst their promotional budgets because files and images can be shared in different ways. USB’s remain a strong product though, and provide a clever way to disseminate information at the same time as promoting your brand. Our recommendation is to start looking at custom shapes and styles to match your industry – a USB can be molded in to almost any shape you can think of.
8. Custom frisbees – you spin me right round baby right round!
Fun and simple, a custom frisbees are a fantastic promotional product for almost any business. Increasingly popular during the warmer months, frisbees offer the chance to present your logo via a fun and socially-orientated promotional item.
7. Custom pens – mightier than the sword!
They may not win you a battle in Westeros, but the pen remains much more popular than a sword when it comes to promotional products. In fact, here at AAC we haven’t had a custom printed sword enquiry for several hundred years! Shame really. But back to pens… whilst they might seem a little simple, the reason custom pens remain a popular product is because they hit the two targets we are often looking at when working with clients; 1) they are cost effective and 2) they are used frequently. Looking around your desk drawer at home, no doubt you’ll find 5 different types of branded pen, whether from your bank, your real estate agent or even one you may have snuck home from work. Your secret is safe with us.
6. Custom lunch boxes – get in my belly!
Tied of the never ending supply of Barbie and TMNT lunch boxes (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles for those of you unaware that these shell-backs have made a return!) from Target and Kmart? Brand your own! Custom lunch boxes are proving to be one of the most popular promotional items for companies targeting children, and especially for merchandise. A full colour image is positioned on the top of the lanyard, with various colours available for the sides and zippers, allowing the colour scheme to match your brand very closely. The additional of foil insulation takes the product to another level, and again provides something attractive AND functional for recipients.
5. Branded shirts, hats and apparel – you are what you wear!
Branded apparel remains one of the top selling categories of promotional product, and especially merchandise. From uniforms to golf days to work wear and safety gear, apparel comes in all sizes and shapes and can be branded in a thousand different ways. Polo shirts remain the most popular product within this range.
4. Custom bags – don’t get carried away!
Custom bags are another long stay of the promotional product list. The reason for this is simple; like pens they are cost effective and they are functional. Of course, many different types of bag go in to this category, which extends it’s scope and it’s benefit.
3. Silicone wristbands – live strong with controversy-free wristbands!
Silicone wristbands are the product that everyone is familiar with. Whether they’re for a charity raising funds, a school, a business promoting a new products or something else, silicone wristbands are cost effective and remain an excellent way to promote a message or brand.
2. Custom water bottles – drink it up!
And here begins the fitness part of the list. Like the top ranked item below, sweatbands and headbands, custom water bottles are experiencing a rise in popularity due to the warmer temperature and the outdoor ethos we enjoy here in Australia. The benefit of these products is that their remains variety in the styles available and that they can be customised in full colour; additionally, they’ll be used regularly.
1. Branded headbands and sweatbands – let’s get physical!
Australia is a country that has gone fitness crazy. It is the ‘thing’ to do now and if you’re not cross fitting or PT’ing or smashing out the reps at the gym, you’re just not with it! There has been a massive rise in the number of personal trainers, fun runs, health clubs, gyms and fitness centres nation wide, which has resulted in a wider range of businesses supporting these industries also, from health and well being products (think Boost) to lifestyle consultants. What this means is that items like headbands and sweatbands, both very much associated with health, fitness and well being, have become a very popular promotional product.
Custom sweatbands are great for branding purposes because they promote a logo and message and can become somewhat of a style item.
Whatever you’re thinking of doing in 2014 when it comes to branded promotional products, talk to AAC.
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