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  • Writer's picturePatrick Gallagher

Not every promotional item works for everyone

I have been selling promo items for over 15 years. I have produced just about every possible item you can put a logo on. I have also been sifting through free samples throughout my adult life.

Here are some of my thoughts about the items that our industry promotes as essential giveaways.

· I will take microfiber cloths every single time I see one. If 6 booths are handing out microfiber cloths, I’ll grab all 6. These are highly useful, in my opinion, and go in every room in my house and every drawer in my desk, every bag I own, etc.

· I will take each and every magnet I am given and put it on my fridge or my filing cabinet. Sports schedule magnets and/or emergency number magnets are still highly regarded by recipients.

· I have a personal favorite brand/style of pen. The Pilot G2. Luckily, these can be branded, so I have a year’s supply with my logo on it. In most cases, I will not grab another pen from an event, unless it is high-novelty and I can fidget with it at my desk.

· Speaking of which, I am a huge fidgeter. Currently on my desk, I have a fidget spinner, thinking putty, a stack of poker chips, a cube puzzle, a fan pen, five post-it pads, and a ball marker. At any time, I could be playing with any of these.

· I also have a favorite mug; it’s a 16 oz ceramic mug and its purpose is to sit on my desk and hold as much tea as possible. I would never consider using a mug that was smaller than 14 – 16 oz.

· Additionally, I have a nice quality, translucent Tritan Plastic bottle with screw-top lid and drinking spout. It’s all I ever travel with.

· I would never sell a $1.00 sports bottle, they leak, they’re not stylish, and they are not seen as valuable after the event. FYI - These days, you can get the exact same quality as expensive retail brands in a lower priced promotional drinkware.

· I keep my 4 keys & mini Swiss Army Knife on a carabineer clip. I’d always take another carabineer if offered. But, I refuse to bulk up my keys and would never add additional key chains regardless of what dual features they offered.

· Personally, I would never take a stress ball from an event even if it was stuffed with $1 bills. I see no use for them in my life. My 5-year-old son, on the other hand, thinks they’re the greatest.

· Finally, I am visiting more offices where desk space is shared and employees do not have a personal connection to their workspace; therefore, there is less need for desk accessories and cubicle-directed items. Telecommuter items are becoming the norm these days, charger ports, cables, accessories cases, bags, etc.

This is just one man’s opinion. What are your favorite promotional items or categories??

Patrick Gallagher

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