Article submitted by SFPRN Contributor Rob Hammerling
…The custom branded merchandise marketplace, frequently, and derisively, referred to as “swag,” is not something that should be ignored by pr firms. PR is about branding, branding is about trust and the dissemination of merchandise that is worn or used by consumers becomes the ultimate in 3rd party endorsements.
South Florida is the home to more merchandise companies than any place in the world. A Google search turns up literally hundreds of on-line options to order directly and many people have a brother-in-law or similar who is in the business, so how do you choose who to work with?
Rule of thumb in any business is “don’t work with family as a client or vendor” so let’s forget about your brother-in-law. Sure, you can order product yourself online, just like your clients can write and disseminate a press release over the wire, and the two will be equally ineffective. Choose a partner who has an experiential marketing background, one who can help you design cost effective programs that serve as impact multipliers to your strategic campaigns.
When proposing an experiential event to a client, whether it’s a tradeshow, special event, tv appearance or contest, make branded merchandise a part of the proposal and have samples and prices included. A PowerPoint presentation is well and good but giving them some illustrative premiums that you have done for yourselves gives them a powerful visual of what will be taken away by event attendees.
About Contributor Rob Hammerling
Rob Hammerling sold his pr firm, http://www.bendergrouppr.com, in order to purchase the merchandise company he had been working with for a decade. He resides in south Florida and his company, http://www.edgemarkpromo.com, has offices in NY, NJ and FL and factories in NJ and China. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org