Marketing giveaways are a great way to grow an emerging brand and gain loyal customers. Let’s face it, everyone loves free stuff!
The biggest challenge for small businesses is that building brand awareness is quite difficult at the very beginning, especially without the resources that other larger companies have at their disposal.
By using promotional merchandise that won’t break the bank, brands can start to reach potential customers at trade shows and other marketing events.
The best promotional giveaways are generally those which will be used and consequently seen every day; as they will provide the most value for your small business as you aim to create brand awareness.
It’s worth considering all the essentials for your target audience, everything from cheap plastic pens to postal-friendly branded coasters.
If you select promo items like reusable water bottles that are both personal and practical – even better!
In what follows, we’ll go through some of the best marketing giveaways for a small business looking to grow brand recognition and reach their target audience.
Best Low-Cost Promotional Products for Small Businesses
It can be quite tricky to think of promotional products for small businesses that are affordable and effective in growing your brand.
Luckily, some of the most effective promotional products are also available at relatively low price points and can be used by small businesses without incurring large costs.
We’ve put together the best-selling promotional products to raise brand awareness on a budget. Each promotional item is ideal for exhibitions and other marketing events.
Next, we’ll explore a few other options which, although slightly more expensive, offer longevity and greater exposure for your company’s logo.
If there’s one thing marketers love to grab at exhibitions, it’s kid’s promotional giveaways!
Although this type of promotional item might feel counter-intuitive, it’s actually one of the best giveaway ideas when you consider the psychology of buyers.
When your company invests in a trade show or similar marketing event, you aren’t simply competing for business – you are competing for attention and time.
You also want to leave a memorable impression when the buyer wades through their branded swag!
A children’s promotional giveaway is a creative way to attract people to your stand, as many buyers have children, nieces and nephews.
If the giveaway also has a novelty factor like a rubber duck or piggy bank, it’s a great ice-breaker and a fun way to engage.
The best selling promotional item for children though is colouring pencils. There’s a reason these cheap giveaways are readily available at children friendly restaurants and waiting rooms – kids love to draw and colour in!
Some of the best giveaway ideas are also the most obvious, as they have stood the test of time. A list of affordable promotional giveaways wouldn’t be complete without promotional keyrings.
What makes keyrings so appealing is their variety. Branded keyrings are available in all shapes, colours and sizes.
The range of materials is also extensive and includes acrylic, vegan-friendly PU, metal and more.
If you’re considering keyrings for your brand, then look no further than our best-selling range of trolley coin keyrings. Available from stock for express delivery or custom-made to order.
We also offer eco-friendly trolley keyrings, which are UK-made from recycled plastic or bamboo.
Like keyrings, promotional badges come in all shapes and sizes, but probably have a broader target audience, as they appeal to young children and supporters of clubs, social causes and charities.
Depending on the style, branded badges can create everything from a corporate image to a novelty factor.
If you’re feeling creative and require unique promotional products, then the go-to option is a custom lapel pin badge.
Available in a variety of finishes, including premium hard enamel and full-colour printed.
For eco-conscious brands, we offer lapel pins and name badges in sustainable bamboo.
Even with the rise of touch screens, styluses and digital media – pens just won’t go away! Budget printed pens have always been the best-selling promotional products.
People who don’t receive a pen as a gift or promotional giveaway; borrow or pinch them! Think about it – when was the last time you actually purchased a pen?
Yet, they are everywhere and used by everyone – offering many benefits to your brand.
Promotional pens come in every price point, in a range of styles and colours – plus a variety of materials including eco-friendly bamboo, wheat and even coffee!
Yes, sweets might be a little taboo, but it’s worth considering your marketing objectives. Most people simply love sweets! So, perhaps they shouldn’t be dismissed as a promotional giveaway idea.
Promotional sweets have the novelty factor and will give your brand personality. Confectionery is colourful, fun, tasty and engaging. What brand doesn’t want that type of interaction with their clients?
At Purple Moon, we also offer eco-friendly packaging for many of our promotional sweets, made from recycled card and compostable materials.
Printed bags are great for promoting your small business, as they are a walking advert for your company logo and other branding.
The beauty of bags, is that they have very prominent branding areas and can be full-colour printed to each side.
What’s more, if your budget allows, they are a great way to distribute printed literature and low-cost giveaways such as pens, mints and bottled water.
Bags are used by everyone of all ages and the choice is vast. At the most affordable end are printed tote bags.
Despite being lightweight, they are surprisingly robust, especially if you opt for a best-selling 5oz natural cotton shopper.
At the other end of the scale are promotional jute bags. Although they are classed as premium branded shopping bags, they are known as ‘bags for life’.
Essentially then, although more expensive, they will last and subsequently be used for much longer, which is a win-win for your brand.
If you are a sports, leisure of children’s brand, then you can’t go wrong with a custom-printed drawstring bag. It’s a promotional item that offers versatility and affordability.
Admittedly, when considering low-cost promotional items, printed mugs and other custom drinkware may not immediately spring to mind.
That’s because of their higher cost-per-unit versus other popular branded giveaways, such as promotional pens or keyrings.
The key difference, however, is that custom drinkware such as ceramic mugs and metal water bottles are more robust and last even longer!
This means your brand’s logo will be seen by potential customers long after your marketing campaign.
Furthermore, event drinkware such as festival cups have much larger branding areas. This enables you to be more creative with your branding, especially when printing a full-colour logo.
Mugs are one of the best giveaway ideas, as people typically use them every day – in the office or at home.
Whether you prefer a morning coffee, tea, or some other hot beverage, you’ll always find yourself using a mug.
Take a look around your office and the odds are, you’ll see a Cambridge mug embellished with a prominently printed company logo.
This best-selling promotional item is dishwasher safe and available in various colours at very affordable prices.
At Purple Moon, we offer a range of UK-made travel mugs and sports bottles. These are offered with mix-and-match components to complement your company’s logo.
Custom branded clothing is typically distributed as staff uniforms or protective workwear. This provides professionallism and trust.
If your budget allows, it’s one of the best promotional investments you can make – especially if you opt for sustainable clothing such as organic hoodies.
However, if executed correctly, promotional apparel can also be a very effective and low-cost giveaway.
The importance here is to be creative, as clothing with business branding may not appeal to everyone.
By including a distinctive feature such as imaginative artwork or a clever slogan (anything that adds brand personality), people can immediately associate with your business.
It doesn’t even need to be a slogan; it could be related to a social cause and anything else that represents your brand values.
If your product is on-trend like custom bucket hats and appeals to a Gen z audience, you can’t go wrong. Of course, choosing designs and materials that are comfortable and look great is very important.
No matter how adaptable your slogan or logo is, if you produce sloppy looking swag, nobody is going to wear it!
Corporate giveaways like custom-branded power banks and wireless speakers always go down well, as they are practical and personal, with a high perceived value.
However, these types of promotional giveaways might not be within the budget of many small businesses looking for bulk marketing products.
Rest assured, there are still plenty of low-cost tech accessories and gadgets for you to choose from. These include budget phone stands, webcam covers, multi-chargers and earphones.
If you’re planning on printing literature to promote your products and services, then it’s worth considering flash drives which are supplied with a document upload.
Custom USB sticks will save you time and money on print and promote your company with every use. Available in various styles and eco-friendly materials, with 1GB – 32GB of memory.
Mental well-being and physical health have never been more important in the workplace.
By utilising the science behind stress relievers in your marketing, you’ll be elevating awareness and the perception of your brand.
Health benefits aside, printed stress balls are very fun and engaging promotional items. The styles are limitless and include custom-made options.
Whatever your industry or marketing theme, we have a stress toy shape for you. Everything from cats and dogs to footballs and brains!
If you’re dipping your toe into the use of promotional giveaways or simply have a tight budget, we’d also recommend branded desktop gifts.
Why? Take a moment to glance around your desk and the branding possibilities will literally jump out at you!
Some promotional giveaways are a permanent desktop feature such as pen pots, mouse-mats, calculators and coasters.
Others like printed sticky notes, sticky markers and note-pads don’t last as long, but are used more frequently throughout the day.
Lastly, don’t forget calendar pods, mugs, water bottles and hand sanitiser!
When choosing low-cost promotional products for your small business, it’s important to maximise your investment.
In closing, we’ve listed a couple of considerations that are easily neglected or overlooked when selecting promo products for your brand, which may provide your company an additional edge.
If you take the leap and invest in promotional items for your company, it’s worth considering sustainable and recycled products.
Driven by eco-conscious consumers and organisations, the range of eco-friendly branded merchandise has evolved considerably and is very affordable.
In fact, the majority of our best selling promotional products are now available in eco-options at similar price points.
Even when paying a slight premium for an eco-gift, the added benefits to your brand will be worth it and may help your company win new business.
Our range of value eco-products includes recycled mouse mats, coasters, notebooks and more.
Logo Design and Branding
Finally, if you haven’t got a logo yet or would like to improve upon your current one, check out our blog post on how to make your logo more merchandise friendly.
If you need further inspiration for your company’s logo design, consider using a poll on social media.
This is a great way to engage with your social media followers and get them invested in your business.
We’ve also written a blog about the psychology of branding and colour for the finishing touch!
Get in Touch
Please do not hesitate to contact us for more information on the best marketing giveaways for small businesses.
You can also read our blog post on the importance of branded merchandise, which details the 5 greatest benefits for your business.