Promotional Items: Reward Your Customers and Attract New Ones

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Promotional products are useful items for small business owners to increase brand awareness among consumers. Business promotional items are a great marketing tool as they allow your brand to connect with consumers by engaging their senses. It is a form of advertising that allows consumers to interact with a brand on a physical level. And promotional products often create a more memorable brand experience.

Unlike advertising messages, promotional products are not as intrusive and distracting. Offering a promotional item is like saying ‘We care. Thank you for being a valued customer.’

When prospects or clients receive these products, they are more likely inclined to reciprocate by looking or purchasing the products or services. According to research, people who receive promotional items are more likely to remember the advertiser’s name on the products. Upon receiving the promotional products, others will be more inclined to research the company or product.

It all falls on your ability to capture the imagination of your targets and help build lasting connections. Promotional items might include wearables, drinkware, bags, computer products, desk office accessories, calendars, tech devices, and more – they come in all shapes, sizes, and colors. In many cases, it’s even possible to obtain custom items that aren’t usually found in promotional product catalogs. Below are some of our picks for your consideration:

The Benefits of Business Promotional Items

Small business owners can go a long way to get their brand noticed with promotional products with the business name and info. Some examples are:

  • Marketing Campaign: Send promotional products out into the community for outreach and to attract potential customers
  • Customer Appreciation: Let your customers know you appreciate their business
  • Trade Shows: Get your brand seen by fellow business owners
  • Employee Appreciation: You can also use these items to give to your staff as rewards or incentives

Best Business Promotional Items for Your Small Business

You don’t have to break your budget to find the best promotional products. There are a lot of options for both cheap promotional items or more expensive ones. We rounded up some ideas for small business promotional products for you in the list below:

ProductTop Pick: Gift Card in a Mini EnvelopeRunner Up: Atmos Green 100% Cotton Reusable Grocery BagsBest Value: 100pcs Personalized Bottle Opener Keychain
Pricing (Estimate)Variable ($10 to $2,000)Moderately PricedMost Affordable
Customization OptionsMini envelope can be printed or stamped with your logo or company nameCompany name, logo, or other promotional content can be printed on either side of the bagCan be customized with up to two lines
Special FeaturesNo fees on the cards and no expiration dateMade from 100% recycled cotton, available in 34 colors, and bulk orders from five to 200 pieces are possibleComes in a variety of colors, several different fonts are available for your company name
QuantitySingleSingle or Bulk (5 to 200 pieces)Bulk (100 pieces)
Ideal UseFor rewarding customers or employeesGreat for trade shows, events, and regular use by customersGreat for trade shows, events, and as promotional gifts Gift Card in a Mini Envelope

Top Pick: Amazon gift cards can be great business promotional items if you serve a very diverse customer base and can’t decide on what item to settle on. Amazon gift cards are pre-loaded with a set amount of money that allows recipients to redeem their gift from amazon.

Gift cards range from as low as $10 to as high as $2,000, allowing you the discretion to reward customers based on their loyalty and frequency of patronage. They are also a good way to reward your employees as well. What is also great is that there are no fees on the cards and no expiration date. You can print or stamp the mini envelope with your logo or company name. Gift Card in a Mini Envelope

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Atmos Green 100% Cotton Reusable Grocery Bags


Runner Up: Branded reusable grocery bags are great promotional products. They are used by most people, are environmentally friendly, and will be seen by many.

The Atmos Green reusable grocery bag is made from 100% recycled cotton, and it comes in at 15 X 16 inches with a 27? long handle. You can print your company name, logo, or other promotional content on either side of the bag. And the company provides the bag in 34 colors and bulk orders from five to 200 pieces.

Atmos Green Recycled Cotton Reusable Grocery bags

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100pcs Personalized Bottle Opener Keychain

100PCS Custom Personalized Bottle Opener Keychain Bulk

Best Value: Our best value pick is this 100-pack of aluminum bottle openers that can be customized with up to two lines. Bottle openers are convenient and small, making them especially great for trade shows. And the best part is, that the customization is done by the company that ships the keychains, so you don’t have to worry about separate printing costs.

You get 100 pieces of promotional gifts for a low price. They come in a variety of colors and several different fonts are available for your company name.

100PCS Custom Personalized Bottle Opener Keychain Bulk

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Smart Go – Microfiber Cleaning Cloth (100 Pieces)

Smart Go - Microfiber Cleaning Cloth

Customization company Smart Go offers edge-to-edge customization on these microfiber cleaning cloths. They will print your company logo or artwork on each white cloth, ensuring your brand stands out. Microfiber cloths are used by almost everyone for electronics, eyeglasses, and more.

Smart Go – Microfiber Cleaning Cloth (100 Pieces) – Digital Custom Print Your Company Artwork or Business Logo

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Promotional Custom Hand Sanitizers – 12 Count

Promotional Hand Sanitizer with Carabiner

Hand sanitizer has become one of the most popular business promotional items, especially if they can be customized. This 12-count hand sanitizers can be customized using a four-color process with your logo, which goes on the sticker on the bottle.

Each 1.5 oz bottle is filled with a fresh scented hand sanitizer infused with moisturizers.

Promotional Hand Sanitizer with Carabiner, Custom Hand Sanitizers – 12 Quantity

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Belladonna Vanilla Lip Balm – 50 Pack

Belladonna Vanilla Lip Balm 50 Pack

Lip balms make great promotional products because just about everyone uses them. This 50-pack by Belladonna is vanilla scented with moisturizing vitamin E and shea butter. The tubes are blank and can be easily and quickly customized by using a label printed with your business name/logo.

Belladonna Vanilla Lip Balm 50 Pack

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20 oz. Water Bottles with Carabiner Set of 100

Custom Water Bottles with Carabiner 20 oz. Set of 10

Nothing beats ice-cold water on hot summer days. Water bottles make great promotional gifts, and your customers will be sure to get a lot of use from these BPA-free, high-quality aluminum water bottles.

These bottles have a twist cap to prevent spilling and are designed with a slim bottom to fit most cupholders.

Discount Promos will print your company logo on the bottles so they arrive ready to go. These bottles are printed in the USA.

Custom Water Bottles with Carabiner 20 oz. Set of 100

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M&M’s Fun Size Giveaways

50ct Promotional Items Add Your Logo Candy M&M's Fun Size Giveaways

Another option for promotional products is candy. This 50-pack of custom promotional fun-sized M&Ms is sure to be a hit with your customers. You can have your small business company logo printed on one side of the wrapper, making it a fun and memorable gift.

50ct Promotional Items Add Your Logo Candy M&M’s Fun Size Giveaways (50 Pack)

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Express Pencils’ Rainbow Rubberized Soft Touch Ballpoint Pens

Rainbow Rubberized Soft Touch Ballpoint Pen with Stylus Tip a stylish

This offering by Express Pencils comes with a 2-in-1 pen/stylus design. The stylus tip is ideal for use on tablets, cellphones, or computer screens. The metal pens come in black ink and are medium point. Each box comes with seven pens in an assortment of colors. The rubberized barrel offers a soft touch grip for extra comfort and is an ideal gift at conventions, trade shows, corporate events, and more. Coming in at 6.93 x 3.7 x 2.44 inches, you can print your small business logo or company tagline to boost your promotions.

Rainbow Rubberized Soft Touch Ballpoint Pen with Stylus Tip a stylish, premium metal pen, black ink, medium point

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Joinwin Mini LED Flashlight Key Chain

Joinwin Mini LED Flashlight Key Chain

Key chains are affordable and popular promotional items among businesses. These key chains by Joinwin come with an additional perk, a flashlight to help you maneuver through keyholes in the dark.

You get a dozen per package in an assortment of colors. Another plus is there is enough space to imprint your logo or branding on the flashlight. Each unit weighs just 3.2 ounces and comes in at 7.5 x 4.7 x 0.7 inches.

Joinwin Mini LED Flashlight Key Chain Thin LED Flashlight on Keychain

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Canopy Street Store’s Motivational Quote Cards

Motivational Quote Cards

These motivation cards come in batches of 50, with 25 distinct designs on business card sizes (2 x 3.5 inches). These kindness cards help send out positive messages and joy to the people that matter to your business, including employees, customers, and other people you’d love to spread positivity to.

The cards come with a blank back so you can add your small business logo and company information should you choose to do so. The cards come in various colors that include pink, orange, yellow, green, blue, white, and teal.

Motivational Quote Cards/Business Card Size / 50 Kindness Cards

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Mr-Label Waterproof Matte White Water Bottle Labels

Waterproof Matte White Water Bottle Labels

From company to promotional events, conferences, open houses, and trade shows, having your brand on a bottle of water will get the attention of your audience.

Mr-Label lets you print your content on an 8.11″ x 2″ label using an inkjet or laser printer. Once it is printed, you peel the labels from the sheet and stick them on the bottle of water. The company provides an online design solution, or you can use Mr-Label MS Word, OpenOffice, or Photoshop templates.

You can get ten sheets with 50 labels or 50 sheets with 250 labels.

Mr-Label 8.11?×2? Waterproof Matte White Water Bottle Labels – for Inkjet/Laser Printer – Self-Adhesive Wraparound

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Choosing the Right Promotional Items

Promotional products can be an incredible marketing tool for small businesses, helping to increase brand recognition and fostering a sense of connection with your customers. As you evaluate potential promotional items, consider the following tips to make the most impact:

Quality: The items you choose should reflect the quality your business stands for. Opt for durable, well-made products. Subpar items could harm your brand’s reputation rather than enhance it.

Usefulness: Aim for items that offer practical value to the recipients. Items that your customers use daily will keep your brand in the forefront of their minds. Here are a few commonly appreciated promotional items:

  • Personalized Pens: Almost everyone uses pens, making them a practical choice.
  • Branded Water Bottles: Ideal for fitness-focused businesses or any company promoting sustainability.
  • Custom Lip Balm: A unique and useful item, perfect for businesses in colder climates or the beauty sector.

Uniqueness: To stand out from the crowd, choose items that are distinctive and memorable. Strive for creative, innovative ideas that capture your brand’s spirit while respecting your marketing budget.

Logo: Your logo or business information should be prominently displayed on your promotional items. Make sure it fits well and enhances the item’s overall look. Having your logo on these products consistently reminds your customers about your brand. If you’re looking to put a personal touch on your items, consider working with vendors that offer custom printing services.

Promotional Giveaways

Promotional giveaways are another great marketing tool for small businesses. You can order bulk items and have enough to give away to a lot of people, or you can get just a few things for a “special giveaway.”

Using Promotional Items

Promotional items can be used for a variety of purposes. Popular programs include business gifts, employee relations, orientation programs, corporate communications, tradeshows, dealer/distribution programs, company stores, generating new customers or new accounts, and promoting brand awareness and brand loyalty. Other uses may include employee incentive programs, new product or service introductions, and marketing research for survey and focus group participants.

If you have a decent budget, you can use it also to impact new and existing customers. For example, you can give out some promotional items to anyone while giving the other two out for high targets and best performers. A rule of thumb is to categorize promotional products based on ‘good,’ ‘better,’ and ‘best.’ This will help you stay organized and keep track of your giveaways.

Choosing the right promotional items can be a game-changer for your small business. By ensuring the products are of high quality, useful, unique, and well-branded, you’re more likely to make a lasting impression on your customers. Always keep your target audience in mind and strive for items that they’ll appreciate and use often. This strategy can significantly boost your brand’s profile and help foster long-term customer loyalty.

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Small Business Editor Liane Lonergan is a staff writer for Small Business Trends and a member of the team for 2 years. She has a Bachelor of Arts degree in English and Communications and is a former English teacher. She has written news articles and essays throughout her collegiate and professional careers.