Advertising Promotional Products: 10 Most Common Promotional Products That Drive Results!

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advertising promotional productsI don’t think I need to tell you how much people appreciate recieving physical gifts.   You’ve probably noticed from personal interaction how happy your mom, dad, siblings, or kids may get when they’re given a gift.  Customers and employees also enjoy gifts, which makes advertising promotional products such an exciting way to promote your business.

In contrast, most people can’t say they’re excited about “sponsored posts” going across their social media feeds or even while they’re searching for information online.  It’s important to take advantage of the opportunities you have to make advertising and building a reputable reputation simultaneous efforts, and advertising promotional products are an example of one of those opportunities.

Doesn’t Giving Cost?

According to Dr. Gary Chapman, author of the Five Love Languages, “giving gifts” is one of the five love languages people use to give and recieve love.  In fact, giving gifts dates back to nomadic times near the creation of the Earth!   Whether in a professional or personal setting, giving helps to:

  • Liven relationships
  • Spark the law of reciprocity
  • Build reputation
  • Increase engagement
  • Show appreciation
  • and, Create an atmosphere of gratitude and generosity

When giving is coupled with advertising promotional products RIGHT, it positively affects the way people inside and outside of the organization perceives the company which results in:

  • More referrals
  • More advocates
  • Increased loyalty
  • and growth

While in the beginning when you’re making the purchase, it might seem like giving promotional items is an EXPENSE or a COST, when the campaign is planned well and the law of reciprocation sets in, it turns into an INVESTMENT that benefits the business.   Here’s a list of the 12 most common advertising promotional products that businesses use to ignite the power of promotional product advertising…

advertising promotional products#1 Advertising Promotional Products | Pens & Writing Utensils

According to statistics, pens rank #3 of all promotional items with most impressions; receiving an average of 2730 impressions.  If you give pens to people within your target audience, it’s likely they network with other like-minded people, and the pens could get exposure to many potential customers.

#2 Advertising Promotional Products | Office Supplies & Calendars

Calendars and office supplies are a must-have for any professional career, which makes them useful and appreciated items.  When you give something that’s useful, it’s likely, the recipient will keep it, use it, and appreciate you for giving it.

#3 Advertising Promotional Products | Mugs & Drinkware

Logoed mugs in particular are more effective advertising than radio and television spots; 57 percent of people were able to recall the advertiser on a mug, versus 32 percent of radio and 28 percent of TV.  Coffee and hot drinks are spiking in sales, and now they exist on nearly every menu!  With the growing trends of coffee and hot tea drinkers, you can take advantage of this growth and get advertising impressions by giving promotional mugs during advertising campaigns.

advertising promotional products#4 Advertising Promotional Products | Kitchen Supplies

Ninety-one percent  of consumers have at least one promotional product in their kitchen, 74 percent have at least one in their workspace, 55 percent have at least one in their bedroom. From custom pizza cutters to custom coasters, there’s so many possibilities in the kitchenware advertising promotional products.

#5 Advertising Promotional Products | Vendor & Convention Supplies

Vendor events, networking events, and conventions are some of the best ways to attract business.  Typically, businesses set up a table with custom items like:

  • A table cloth
  • Retractable banners
  • Maybe giveaway custom imprinted giveaways like mugs, cards, or candies
  • and even branded water bottles!

advertising promotional productsItems for vendor events leave a lasting impression of your brand and your brand message. Added to that, if you do a contest and promotional giveaways, you could increase engagement at your vendor booth, and have something useful for potential customers to walk away with.  Doing a vendor event well could give advertising impressions for months or years to come.

#6 Advertising Promotional Products | Auto Supplies

From jumper cables to tire pressure checkers, keychains to sun shields, there are so many promotional items you can use to represent your brand.  Auto supplies don’t have to only be purchased by auto shops!  They can be great giveaways for people in the auto industry like:

  • Tint shops
  • Window repair shops
  • Vehicle maintenance shops
  • Car dealerships
  • and, auto supply retailers

Auto promotional products can also help run good promotional campaigns for companies outside of the auto industry simply because they’re useful and reasonable costs.  Often, custom promotional keychains sold by promo dealers can cost less than 0.50 per piece!

#7 Advertising Promotional Products | Outdoors

Certain industries (like Real Estate) are well known for using promotional signsadvertising promotional products, but did you realize there are many other custom products that fit into the outdoor category?  Signs are only a component of the outdoor promotional products; other outdoor items such as balloons, games, umbrellas, tool kits, and ice scrapers can also be used as promotional items for businesses.

Can you imagine how many impressions a business could get from an umbrella in a very rainy area?  Or, could you imagine how appreciative a person in your target audience would be if your giveaway spared them in a crisis?   Promotional product advertising can be very powerful!

#8 Advertising Promotional Products | Bags & Coolers

With nearly six thousand impressions, bags generate more impressions than any other promotional product in the U.S.  You can give bags ranging from paper and plastic shopping bags (like what’s normal for retail), or backpacks, purses, or coolers!  They’re a great promotional item to use for mixed gender promotions, and they’re very useful.

#9 Advertising Promotional Products | Wearables

Wearables are the top product category, followed by writing instruments, bags, calendars and drinkware.  Wearables come in many forms: uniforms, t-shirts, buttons, pins, hats, and the list goes on.  Wearables are versatile.  They can be for employee use or for advertising promotions, gifting, and giveaways.

advertising promotional products

#10 Advertising Promotional Products | Flash Drives & Technology

Seventy-seven percent of consumers say a promotional product’s usefulness is the number-one reason to keep it, with health and safety products, computer products and writing instruments ranked as the most useful.  In keeping with the stats, flash drives and custom technology products shouldn’t be overlooked.

#11 Advertising Promotional Products | Magnets

Magnets can be very cost effective and a high value.  They go perfect in goodie bags, mailings, onboarding packages, and a variety of different promotional campaigns.  Office workers have metal desks, metal cabinets, and other metal surfaces, and most consumers have refrigerators, so applying business promotions to a magnet can help your customers or potential clients recall your information when they need it.

Final Words on Advertising Promotional Products

The goal of this article was to show you 11 of the most common advertising promotional products. These top 11 are good to keep in mind when you’re looking for ways to acquire or retain customers, trying to keep key talent, creating goodie bags, hosting giveaways, attending vendor events, or advertising for your business.  Ready to get start with promotional product advertising, check out my other reviews of promo product vendors I recommend:

If you have questions or concerns about this, don’t hesitate to leave them in the comments section.  I’d love to help you out!

Now, it’s Your Turn…

Have you or someone you know used any of these 11 top advertising promotional products for advertising in your businesses? Have you noticed how businesses who use advertising promotional products were able to improve their brand perception, increase their effectiveness with acquiring customers, or motivate their employees?  What’s your observations? Leave your comments below.

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20 thoughts on “Advertising Promotional Products: 10 Most Common Promotional Products That Drive Results!”

    1. Tiffany Denise

      I’m glad you found a lot of useful information. That’s my #1 goal is to offer useful information on how to grow a business from concept to enterprise. I’ll make sure to continue updating so it’s easier to navigate it all. Thanks for your feedback.

  1. Tiffany Denise

    Hi Tiffany, really appreciate the post on the common advertising promotional products. Companies need to put much consideration into what promotional products they should give in order to increase sales or brand awareness. I think the best promotional product a company can give is a sample of their product or free trial of the services that they provide. The best way to sell to potential customers is to give them a teaser on what benefits they would get out from it.

    1. Tiffany Denise

      Hi Adrian! I agree that samples can be great promotional products. I think it adds an extra special touch when the sample is in a custom branded container. Companies use a variety of means to advertise their businesses. Samples and custom promo items are two very effective ways.

  2. Tiffany Denise

    Promotional gifts are a good a great way of advertising your brand.

    It is vital in today’s business world to get brand growth, with this type of growth comes awareness and with social media so big now awareness is vital to have successful business.

    Pens and mugs would be my choice with regards to have remembering companies.

    As you pointed out 57% Of people have a mug in the kitchen either at work or at home with a brand on it.  Just imagine how many cups of teas and coffee is a drum for out the day househunting offices across the country so yes it’s a great way of keeping your brand in the public eye .

    All of your suggestions carry way to helping create awareness for the companies brand and none should be overlooked.

  3. Tiffany Denise

    Since I work at a bank, I see the value of giving away promotional products to help get results. We’ve got a lot of things that we give to people and our valued customers such as ink pens, coffee mugs, sunglasses, checkbook covers and more with the bank’s logo on them. It seems though that the most popular item is the suckers we have! People, not just kids, take lots of them and so it’s pretty much a staple for us here, lol. I’ve also seen lots of promotional signs especially from Real Estate like you mentioned and some places even still use balloons. What are some of your favorite promotional products either to give out or receive?

    1. Tiffany Denise

      My favorite to give out are pens. They are useful and affordable, and they’re not thrown into the bottom of a purse like a business card. Haha. There are other promo items I like for different uses though. The pens are just very versatile, so it’s what I personally give away most.

  4. Tiffany Denise

    Thank you for the top 11 list!  I’ve been toying with the idea of making an investment in promotional products for my drone related website.  I kept thinking how pens and magnets seem to be everywhere and yet I’m not a huge fan of them personally.  The T-Shirts are tempting but I had no idea how high the percentages were for kitchen gadgets.  I’m just not sure how to integrate drone advertising with kitchen gadgets.  Maybe the coasters?

    Again, thank you.  This gives me a lot of ideas to play with.

    1. Tiffany Denise

      Hi Scott! There are so many fun ideas you could play with.  You really don’t have to use kitchen gadgets. I’d love to ping ideas. Let’s set up an audit and see how we can help you achieve your goals.

  5. Tiffany Denise


    These are great promotion give aways I have received some in the past from different companies mugs are the number one in my life keeping me reminded of the company I now refer people to those companies.  As an internet marketer do you have any suggestions on what possible gift I could offer people that visit my website?  Keeping them reminded of my brand?  Thanks for any ideas you can pass along they are greatly appreciated.


    1. Tiffany Denise

      Hi Susan! I’ve seen online businesses use promo items for customers to help them feel they’re a real tangible company.  Often times, digital companies get lumped into a mental compartment where it seems they aren’t really real. There’s so many promo items to consider, I’d want to set up an audit with you to discuss your goals and the outcomes you’re looking to achieve.

  6. Tiffany Denise

    Advertising promotional products i feel are really hard to choose at times.  I have spent a lot of time just trying to choose which one to get and i almost always get the pens, which is starting to get a little boring.

    So when I came across to your article I got really excited because now  i have fresh ideas and not only that you have shared how popular and effective they are and now a pen is not as boring as I thought and I agree with you when you say that the pen can get more exposure when clients are networking.

    I also like the ideas about bags because there are so many types and depending on the event I can obtain a bag to suit.

    Thank you for this very informative and help article you have got me really thinking now.


    1. Tiffany Denise

      Hi Jennifer. Glad to see your around again. It’s good to mix it up at times, but pens are a great giveaway for most things. You really can’t go wrong with pens. They’re very useful. Let me know what you decide to try out and schedule an audit so we can help out.

  7. Tiffany Denise

    Hi Tiffany. Thank you for this incredible article. I have my own website and have been struggling to come up with giveaway ideas. Thank you so much for your comprehensive list. The only freeby I have been able to come up with to date is an ebook., and that’s fine but I need more. Now, thanks to your list I can think of other ways to help my business to grow. I will definitely be coming back to your site for more information (yes, I have it bookmarked). All the best. Jim

    1. Tiffany Denise

      Hi Jim! The ebook is effective for many people, but as you mentioned, sometimes, you want to grow into different things.  Glad you found the ideas helpful!

  8. Tiffany Denise

    Hi Tiffany:

    I sure like getting gifts but I like giving them just as much!

    So, are you saying that I could have promotional items on my website that I would give whenever someone left their email address or bought one of the products I have featured?

    I must say that I have been given literally hundreds or even thousands of promotional items through the years and pens are by far the number one item. It’s interesting to note that my father (who died many years ago) was in this very same business long before the internet was a reality. He had all kinds of stuff in his arsenal from pens to calendars to paper weights!

    These are great ideas and thank you for sharing!

    1. Tiffany Denise

      Hi Chris! Promotional items are definitely something you can give to new customers or email signups. I’ve seen some people who offer the gifts free but have people pay shipping. They do this sometimes as a way to build the buying relationship. You just want to make sure youre staying below your lifetime customer value when adding more to your customer acquisition costs. We can set up an audit to discuss this further!

  9. Tiffany Denise

    Hi Tiffany. Thanks for a very informative post. I must admit I hadn’t given much thought to promotional products for my business, but after reading your article you’ve given me a whole new perspective on this. As you say, promotional products that are actually useful and people want to keep are the most effective. Creating Brand awareness is such an important factor these days.

    Great post and great website. Thanks again.

    1. Tiffany Denise

      Hi Greg! I’m glad I was able to give you a new perspective on this. Advertising promotional products can be very effective and affordable. You should try it out.

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