Category Archives: Promotional Campaign

McDonalds: How to Coin a Promo

The latest McDonalds campaign celebrating 50 years of Big Mac’s is using their own version of a global currency to promote the celebration. By offering a branded coin that can be used anywhere around the world (i.e has purchasing power parity); they are also tapping into The Economist’s guide of Burgernomics or the “Big Mac Index”. Nice tie-in in these days of a shrinking world and hype around crypto-currencies.


Commemorative coins and buttons have been used as promotional items for a long time. In the early days of the United States, commemorative buttons were issued to honour the inauguration of George Washington. These small brass buttons had “Long Live the President” engraved around Washington’s initials in the centre and then the initials of all of the current states were engraved around the outer edge of the button. There was a small hole for a ribbon so that the button could be worn on a lapel—in other words, a promotional product!

P.S you can pick up a George Washington commemorative button at Ebay for $2,000 USD+



Matthew Bywater

Marketing Strategist
For more marketing insight from Matthew check out his blog –

Reducing Waste can be a Shoe-In

Of the 3 R’s of recycling (Reduce, Reuse, Recycle), Reduce is perhaps the most powerful R as it means unnecessary items are not produced in the first place therefore negating or limiting the need for the other 2.

Puma’s answer to this was the Clever Little Bag which uses 65% less cardboard and has no laminated printing or tissue paper. It also weighs less and takes up less space than a traditional shoe box which means shipping costs are reduced.


The Clever Little Bag also becomes a carry bag which negates the need for a shopping bag along with making a convenient promotional item. Promotional items with the greatest practical use will return the greatest cost per impression.


Matthew Bywater
Marketing Strategist
For more marketing insight from Matthew check out his blog –

Bottle up for a World Cup

Bottle-up-for-a-World-Cup-BlogFor the 200 FIFA World Cup of the Brazilian soccer team uniform was made of recycled plastic bottles – about 8 bottles per jersey. The plastic bottles retrieved from landfills in Japan and Taiwan. After being melted down they were turned into yarn to produce the materials.

By using recycled PET bottles, Nike reduced their energy consumption by over 30% compared to normal polyester. They also saved over 13 millions bottles from going to landfill.

This same process is available in Australia to the promotional products industry. Pictured here are promotional polo shirts and caps which are made of 100% RPET recycled material. These promotional items also come with a swing tag proclaiming the environmental benefits of this material so you can subtly boast your green credentials.

                         4Promote-Promotional-Products-Bottle-up-for-a-World-Cup-Blog-Corbel-Polo                              4Promote-Promotional-Products-Bottle-up-for-a-World-Cup-Blog-PET-Cotton-Sandwich-Cap

                                   Corbel Polo                                       PET/Cotton Sandwich Cap

Matthew Bywater
Marketing Strategist
For more marketing insight from Matthew check out his blog –

Power Banks – Which One?

Don’t get caught out with the wrong power bank! There are a few things you need to consider, based on what you want to charge, how many times and how quickly you want it done!

1.  Capacity

Know the battery capacity of your device – see the table below as a guide. If your battery is 1500mAh and is 0% now, a power bank with 2200mAh can charge your phone 1 time. If your battery is 3000mAh and is 0%,  a power bank with 2200mAh will not be able to re-charge to full because the phone battery capacity is higher than the power bank, so it may only charge 75%.

It’s important to note that a power bank will not deliver its full advertised capacity to your device – some of this energy is lost through the heat generated and voltage conversion.

If you require  a power bank that is able to charge your phone several times, you need a power bank with higher capacity.

iPhone 5S 1560 mAh Samsun Galaxy S5 2800 mAh
iPhone 6 1810 mAh Samsun Galaxy Tab S (10″) 7900 mAh
iPad Air 2 7340 mAh HTC One (M8) 2600 mAh
iPad 4 11,560 mAh Nokia Lumia 920 2000 mAh
Blackberry Z10 1800 mAh

2. Output Specification

This refers to how quickly a power bank will charge your device. 1A – 1.5A output is generally for smartphones, 1.5A – 2.0A output is generally for tablets. You can use either output to charge any USB device – it will draw only the power it needs. However, you might find some tablets, usually iPads, will refuse to charge from lower specified outputs.

3. Number of Outputs

1 output  to charge 1 device, 2 outputs to charge 2 devices simultaneously. Obviously this will draw more power!

4. Short Circuit & Overcharge

Choose a power that can automatically cut off the electricity when charging the battery full, because overcharge will certainly shorten the life of the bank. Look for one that features a power cut when a short circuit occurs.

5. Portability

Different sizes suit different needs. Some will fit in your pocket, others you need a bag for! If you’re going mobile pick one that suits lifestyle.



Click here for more Power Banks

Why Use Recognised Promotional Suppliers

We often get customers asking us to purchase and brand certain products they find online or in retails stores. We are often quote hesitant to do this for several reasons.

Designated Promotional Products are :

1) Manufactured to produce good print area’s so that your message / logo gets maximum exposure
2) Made to be printed, laser engraved etc so the logo sticks and stays. Often, other products need to be treated before hand which adds costs
3) Liability – we have relationships with regular suppliers which is our safety net if something goes wrong. This is not only with the item itself but there can be complications in the printing
4) Often, retail products are packaged in blisters packs etc which adds costs to remove the packaging before printing and then looks unsightly when repacked into the same packaging
5) When looking online at overseas pricing,  add-ons like freight, customs fees are often not easy to calculate and severely increase the costs
6) Payment – you need to pay for these items upfront, meaning all liability sits with the payee if the product is not up to spec, delivered in full or does not turn up at all

promotional products work

Matthew Bywater

Marketing Strategist

For more marketing insight from Matthew check out his blog –

The Right Questions Equals Success In Promotions

Asking the right questions is the start for a successful promotional campaign. Often we jump straight into the tactical side of promotional products (the products themselves)then try to marry the promotion back to the product we are promoting. The missed opportunity here is our advertising medium is often not congruent with the story we wish to tell. With literally have tens of thousands of promotional products to choose from, we need to filter down the options in order to choose the most effective medium. The questions below are just 5 of the 16 I usually go through with a client, but they are a good place to start.

Promotional ideas

Promotional Questions

  1. When do you need it?
  2. Who is your target?
  3. How many of your target do you wish to hit?
  4. What is the dollar amount you wish to spend per target?
  5. How long of a tail to the promotion do you require?
1. When do you need it?

The “Just In Time” management might work well in many forms of procurement, but generally doesn’t work well for promotional products. You can save anywhere between 30-50% by extending the lead time on items like Headwear, Stubby Coolers and Bags. You also get greater choice with more time and the ability to custom produce an item for a truly unique effect. By organising well ahead of time you also allow your promotional supplier time to cultivate better ideas.

2. Who is your target audience?

The more specific your target the more effective the promotion can be. The promo also needs to be AUDIENCE APPROPRIATE – a travel wallet may be good for an executive who travels a lot but not much use for a local concreter. By using a particular product or industry centred message, the promo will be more valued by your client – this creates an emotional tie-in with the client.

3. Quantity – How many people would you want to reach and what is the frequency of exposure to your product?

Tied in with your total budget, the quantity will affect how wide spread the promotion is. This also helps in selecting a product, some products are not cost effective in low quantities. If unsure, give a range, at least then the promotional products consultant then has somewhere to start.

4. $ per unit/customer

Knowing the dollar amount per customer/target is important as this helps frame the promotion. In a niche market, or with a high value client, a higher dollar value product like Callaway golf clubs might be applicable. Alternatively at a trade show where you’re prospecting, you would use low cost promotional items like pens, stress items etc, where you expect a lower rate of return. This differs from a sales bait where the cost of the promotion is generally a percentage of the item you are selling.

5. How long of a tail do you want on the promotion?

The term tail is used for the length of effectiveness of the promotion. Sometimes for cost effectiveness it is better to go for a short term tail, the strategy here is to get your message out as cheaply and quickly as possible (a low-end plastic pen is a typical example). Longer tail promotions will last for months or years (e.g. coffee mugs), this is where you will get better value on your Cost Per Impression (see previous blog) but the initial outlay is higher.


Matthew Bywater
Marketing Strategist

For more marketing insight from Matthew check out his blog –

Maximising Your Promotions Budget

When choosing how to allocate your promotional budget it is critical to understand the Cost-Per -Impression (CPI). CPI’s are used to measure the effetiveness of advertising, it calculates how much it costs to make an impression on a target client.

For example, if a $3,000 magazine advertisment gets viewed once by 100,000 potential clients the CPI is 3 cents. However if you gave out 1,500 branded bags at a total cost of $3,000 which has an average veiwing of 9.33 times per month for the year, than this works out to a CPI of 1.8 cents (also this does not include the number of views by potential cleints passing by).

A study conducted by the Advertising Specialty Institute and published in Promotion (March-April 09) revealed the following findings. Compare the numbers below and you will see the value promotional products can have in your campaign

Medium / CPI

Cost-Per-Impression of Promo Products

Caps $0.002, Bags $0.002, Writing Instruments $0.002, Shirts $0.005, Other Wearables $0.016, National Magazine $0.033, Newspaper Ad $0.019, Prime Time TV $0.019

This data illustrates that an ad in a national magazine can cost you over 15 times more and a newspaper ad almost 10 times more than adveritising on a pen, cap or bag for the same result. You can work out from this which is giving you more bang for your buck.

Another way to use the CPI measurment is when comparing costs of the same goods. A good exmaple here is with promotional pens, 2 pens can look, feel and write the same but one can be priced cheaper than the other. One way manufacturers keep their costs down is by putting less ink in the pen. It is not uncommon for some pens to have as little as 500m of ink compared to some more reputable brands that have over 1.9km of ink. By using the CPI you can work out that the 2nd pen will last almost 4 times longer, and usualy only costs about 15-20% more. In this case the cheaper pen is far more expensive per impression.


Matthew Bywater
Marketing Strategist

For more marketing insight from Matthew check out his blog –

Being Unique Counts

In an over-stimulated market we all are looking to find a way to stand out from the pack. Being unique conjures up an emotional connection between your brand (or product) and something special for the client – everybody wants to feel special.

4Promote Madison Goldfish Brand Identity Mascot

I think at times we try too hard to create something new when what we need is a soft innovation (refer to Seth Godin’s book – Free Prize Inside). I’m all for trying something new (no rewards without risk – right?), but often it is simply a matter of taking something that works and tweaking it slightly.

Uniqueness allows you to be a niche of 1 in a crowded market place. It can position you as an innovator, always thinking ahead looking for new opportunities. It helps to maintain your branding/message as still RELEVANT.

All these attributes help separate your company/brand from the competition.

Uniqueness can be separated into 2 major areas –

4Promote Promotional Custom USB

Cricket USB

1) Unique to your industry – Certain promotions lend themselves to certain industries and tend to get used over and over again. However to be unique you need to come up with a promotional product that your industry has not encountered. This may involve some courage as it is much easier to follow the industry standard. (often called the magnetic middle) The example below (USB cricket bat) is a good example as not only did it fit in with the sporting nature of the industry the client is involved in, but also creates a nice emotional tie-in for those that love cricket.

4Promote Promotional Custom Keyring

Promotional Keyring Nintendo Wii

2) Unique to your product – does the promotion have a link to your product. When Nintendo launched their their Wii game console with its unique hand-held wireless remote, they capitalised on this point of differentiation by designing a keychain flashlight replica of the remote. I would deem this a “soft innovation” – keyring flashlights have been around for years. This was just a way of making it unique.

To create a unique promotional product takes time in both the ideation and production phases, so get in early and contact your promotional products consultant.


Matthew Bywater
Marketing Strategist

For more marketing insight from Matthew check out his blog –