For a long time advertising gadgets were concerned gash and whimsy. Now they are an important medium for information used in advertising campaigns.
Beginnings of advertising
The cradle of advertising is the USA, where in 1789 the first gadget ever was used. During the elections of George Washington there were given badges produced for the needs of his campaign (such badges are used in the USA till this day). In Poland first advertisements appeared much later and for a long time they aroused negative feelings and suspicion. While Americans started producing things with a company’s logo or slogans very soon (first branded products appeared in XIX century), in Poland there were hard communistic times of PRL and its propaganda and later all kinds of advertising were associated with it. So there is no surprise that for a long time advertisements were causing reluctance.
Reluctance to advertisements in media
In 2010 CBOS [przypis tł.: a centre of research on public opinion] done a research titled “They bore, irritate and misinform – the Poles about advertising”. This research illustrated perfectly Polish attitude to marketing announcements. 48% of responders answered that they do not like commercials but is forced to watching or listening to them. Only 13% claimed that after all they like them. The enquiry concerned commercials on TV, radio and advertisements in press. The expansion of advertising is so huge that it started to repel and irritate. The difference between spot broadcast on TV or radio and a commercial gadget is their aims. Gadgets promote brand and trademark while commercials promote a product. Secondly promotional gadgets are a gift while commercials are imposed announcements broadcast in media whether we want it or not.
Satisfaction of commercial gadgets
The goal of gadgets is a promotion of a company, improvement of its image and creation of positive opinion about a brand. Why this kind of promotional items, in contrary to other forms of advertising, win customers’ sympathy? – “First and foremost, gadgets are gifts from a company to its customers, business partners, and sometimes even employees. A gift is never concerned negatively. It is a gesture of sympathy.
A huge cutting edge of promo-gadgets over other forms of advertising is that they are useful.” – Michał Maciejewski says, the President of Reklamowe24.
Market analysis confirms this. In a research titled “A cost analysis of promotional products versus other advertising media” conducted in 2016 by Advertising Speciality Institute, responders indicated three features of selected gadgets which are of key importance to them. The great majority of them pointed at utility of a gadget. Much less pointed at attractive design, and the least important was a category called “happiness of possession”. Similar opinion on gadgets have owners of companies who invest in promotional materials. The majority of them (68%) pointed at quality, only 3% less at appearance and 63% voted on price. Only 5% of responders claimed that they do not purchase promotional materials.
Source: Research: “Perception of commercial souvenirs as a medium for advertising” PIAP – 2015.
Utility is the most important
It turned out that commercial gadgets are very popular and they stay for a long time with people who received them. In research from 2011 titled „Advertising impact of promotional items” conducted by a German company Dima Markorschung, 94% of responders gave positive response when asked if they still own at least one promotional gadget which they received earlier. Among the selected gadgets were mentioned: some office materials, household accessories, tools, high-tech equipment, clothes and food. It’s worth mentioning that it was a group of 66mln responders! Only 6% had none of them. 75% of searched promotional gadgets were possessed by the owners for over a half of a year.
In the course of the time, consumers are still very eager to take advantage of such gifts. Following report by Advertising Speciality Institute, customers use umbrellas for the longest period of time (14 months), then power banks (12 months) and calendars (12 months). In the same research responders were asked what they do with the gadgets if they do not use them any longer. In each place where the survey was done (the USA, Canada, London, Paris, Berlin, Rome, Madrit, Sydney, Mexico), the majority of interviewees replied that they “pass them to somebody else”.
– “Promotional gadget should be universal and useful in everyday activities. We need an umbrella when it rains, pen-drive is a must-have at work, A power bank can get us of the hook when a mobile battery discharges at the least expected moment. So while selecting a gadget, first and foremost, we have to ask ourselves whether a customer will be using it. The longer he use it, the more remembered company is and more positive emotions it engages” – Michał Maciejewski says.
From year to year budgets for promotional gadgets increase. Almost 22% of company owners who took part in PIAP survey claimed that in 2014 they spent from 20 to 50PLN on BTL products (namely: promotional materials, loyalty programs, printing). In 2015 almost 30% of entrepreneurs decided to spend so much money, and 70% confirmed that “promotional gadgets are effective form of advertising”.
– “Every year we notice a greater interest in promotional gadgets. Systematically we widen our offer according to fashion and top trends. Promotional gadgets are becoming to play greater and greater role in marketing operations. Entrepreneurs are convinced that investment in gifts, in a longer period of time, pays and brings profits namely – satisfied customers who trust the brand and keep returning for services and growing number of new customers – Michał Maciejewski sums up.