In 2007 alone, the Advertising Specialty Industry reported $19.6 billion in revenues. That was a record setting 5.4% increase over the previous year. While that number appears optimistic, the reality behind the scenes is that as the economy continues to slump, marketing professionals and promotional campaign managers are under strict accountability with their expenses.
With today’s technology, many promotional campaigns are structured to provide hard evidence of conversion rates. Email, direct mail, radio and television campaigns are wisely structured to track response and ultimately conversion rates. This is achieved through special URL’s or rider pages (eg. www.companyXYZ.com/sale) on a company’s website.
However, it seems when it comes time to head to trade shows, marketing professionals overlook the need for accountable promotional strategies. Pens, stuffed animals, stress balls, paper weights, candy – all these are merely take away products with one objective in mind – to entice trade show goers into the booth. But that’s where many promotional campaigns fall short.
Mason Moore, a veteran in the advertising industry, says, “There’s never been a better time to be in the business of marketing. The key is to get creative with your strategies and never compromise the ability to gauge your efforts. Without adequate statistical information, companies can waste millions before finding out their campaigns did not result in conversion…or what is also know as consumption.”
Along the lines of Mason’s advice, companies like CFgear.com, a supplier of customized flash drive products, are helping promotional product campaigns come alive feasibly and professionally. “We’ve been pioneers in the flash drive industry. Developing sophisticated preload interfaces on the flash drives…working with companies to help deliver a promotional product that accurately measures conversion,” says Chris Wagner, Solutions Director at CFgear.com.
Flash drives are indeed a popular promotional product that is catching the attention of companies and consumers. In the trade show environment, companies invest in bulk flash drives, sometimes thousands at a time. They work with firms like CFgear.com to produce customized flash drives to promote the brand at a trade show or other event. But that’s merely the beginning of the promotional strategy. Inside the flash drive, companies can preload brochures, sales data, or any digital information they want. Flash drives can also be programmed to point to a company website. Depending on the complexity of the promotional campaign, the URL programmed in the flash drive can be unique for each flash drive distributed. This allows for precise tracking of the issued flash drives and can even lead to conversion data depending how the promotional campaign is structured.
There are a growing number of technologically-based promotional products. Determining which one fits your promotional needs and objectives is of course up to each company. The key is to make sure your promotional campaign is structured with products and strategies that allow for objective measurement of your investment. So the next time your company is scheduled to head out to the annual trade show, make sure your promotional strategies and products are advanced enough to produce an “intelligent campaign”.