Thanksgiving has barely come and gone, which means the foil-wrapped plates and bowls in your refrigerator may be the only leftovers you have on the brain. But there are other types of leftovers as well—the extra items from your latest promotion (or even from a promotion in years past), for example. What can you do with leftover promotional items that do nothing but collect dust? A LOT!
Of course, there’s rarely a time in which logo-imprinted merchandise would cease to be useful for your brand (unless you’ve included outdated information or drastically changed your logo), but products printed with time-sensitive details tend to rot in storage closets. Would you feel comfortable giving away a corporate gift basket if it included a stadium cup with “John Smith Company’s 2008 Summer Picnic” on the side? If you answered no, then you may have some thinking to do…and you can do better than simply throwing your supply away!
Waste not, want not! Break out your leftover inventory and get started with one of these ideas:
Have a Flea Market for Charity
This option is ideal if you have a variety of extra promo items in your possession. Let people know that you’re clearing out your inventory and that all proceeds will be donated to a local charity. This way, the charity will benefit from a donation, your customers will benefit from new stuff, and you’ll benefit from the brand exposure!
What you charge for each product is up to you, but don’t ask for a king’s ransom! You could get away with charging five bucks for a leftover company t-shirt if it’s an appealing design, but even charging a dime for a pen, a quarter for a koozie, or a dollar for a stress ball will move your stock and rack up some cash depending on how many extras you have. (If you’d rather not have a flea market, then you could also donate your extras flat-out to your local Goodwill or Salvation Army).
Give Employees and Friends First Pick
Have you asked your staff, family members, or friends if they’d like to take some extra items home? One employee probably won’t be able to use 150 extra notepads, but each person may want one or two to take with them. Ask around and/or send a companywide email asking if anyone would like some merchandise that’s just taking up space. This option spreads your business name around and reinforces company loyalty, too. Most people will jump at the chance to help; I work at a promotional products company and I still get excited anytime I receive a new product with a logo on it!
Display and Observe
If there’s one thing I’ve learned about people, it’s that they’ll take anything if it’s free. When I worked at a bank, we’d personalize a batch of promo calendars every year and set them on the counters for customers to take. We could hardly keep a stack intact for more than five minutes because so many people would grab them to take home. This strategy will work for your left over, time-sensitive promotional products as well. The vast majority of customers aren’t going to care if your logoed tote bags have an event date on them that’s already come and gone—they’re going to care that the bags are free and that they’re reusable. Plus, they may even go home and tell their friends about it, which will raise more conversation about your company and possibly bring you new business!
Have you used these suggestions to clear your promotional product leftovers? Do you have any more ideas for extra giveaway items? We’d love to hear your feedback—leave a comment and let us know your thoughts! Thanks for reading the Quality Logo Products blog.