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A Magnet on Every Fridge – Getting Your Brand in Front of Homeowners

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Have you ever wondered if passing out promotional items is worth the effort? And, if it is worth the effort, how do you get your brand in front of the right people? According to Sage World, about 53% of consumers use a promotional product one time a week or more and only one out of every five would throw a product away, even if they hadn’t done business with the company.

You can use this information to your advantage as an HVAC company. When the homeowner suddenly has a problem with their heating and cooling system or needs service on a unit, then he will remember that pen, magnet, or umbrella and go to it for contact information. While there isn’t a guarantee that they will call you just because they use a product with your name on it, it does give you an edge that doesn’t involve the Yellow Pages.

Inexpensive Marketing Strategy

According to Larry Basinait on the Global Advertising Specialty Impressions Study for Advertising Specialty Institute, “Advertising specialties are less expensive per impression than most other form of advertising.” He states that these promotions are more targeted. For example, an ad specialty, when bought in bulk, might only cost six cents per lead while an ad in a national magazine would run around $1.80.

To get the most of this marketing strategy, though, you need to keep a few things in mind.

  • How will you get your promotional product in front of your target audience? For homeowners, a good choice might be a local home show or a festival that a lot of locals attend.
  • Is your giveaway timeless? You don’t want to offer something that expires quickly or only is useful for a short time. Although a lot of companies do give away calendars, they are only good for a year and then most people toss them out. If you do calendars as a giveaway, consider going to a perpetual calendar instead.
  • Did you include a call to action (CTA)? Just as with other forms of advertising, you need to command your audience to action. One example would be to include a line such as “Call us for a free quote.”

Take Your Real Giveaway Virtual

The goal with social media is to get people to share your posts and talk about your company, services, and what they like about being your customer. One way you can get some additional traction out of promotional items is by giving them to loyal customers and then linked that to a social media campaign.

  • Send the promotional freebie to loyal customers as a thank you.
  • Wait a few days or even a week.
  • Post on social media an image of the item and a note that loyal customers received a thank you this past week. Ask followers/fans to retweet and share why they like your company.
  • Those who appreciated the freebie will likely share the post. This is one of the most cost effective ways to get word of mouth buzzing about your company.

Some More Ideas for Where to Pass Out Giveaways

A great example of passing out freebies to get some buzz going can be seen by studying what local radio stations do. They will set up a booth in a bank parking lot, at Walmart, or even in a local park. They then create excitement with contests, free food, giving items away, and contest entries. Just make sure you have permission from local officials or store management and set up a small tent and create some enthusiasm.

You can also:

  • Attend local street fairs.
  • Get a booth at the annual festival in your county.
  • Go door to door and pass out the item to people who are home and tell them about your biz (or have your street team do this.
  • Go to a trade show, but figure out the best one to attend for the purposes of your target demographic. For example, the annual boat, sport and travel show is probably going to attract a lot of couples and homeowners from around your area. A wedding show may attract a high number of young singles who are not yet homeowners.
  • Pair up with a local business and ask them to offer your freebie to anyone who comes into their store.

These are just a few of the ways you can benefit from using promotional products. Think outside the box, both in what items you offer and the places where you can offer them to reach new customers.

Lori Soard

Posted In: Sales & Marketing

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