Fish in a light bulb representing new ideas in promotional products

A Look at the Top Promotional Product Trends in 2021

by Dennis Oglesby on January 25, 2021

Are you ready for the new year?

Many businesses are eager to see the challenges and travails of 2020 fade in the rear view mirror. They want to embrace a bright future. They’re eager for opportunity. It’s a new year with new opportunities and many business leaders are eager to get started.

How is this going to shift your promotional product strategy in the upcoming year? What can you do to seize success in 2021?

The Future of Promotional Products

2020 was a difficult year for promotional products.

Businesses were focused finding and purchasing masks and hand sanitizers early last year, rather than promotion, but as the year wore on companies began looking for more traditional promotional items. That trend looks to continue as we move into 2021. Sales won’t pick up immediately, but as we leave a locked-down winter and the vaccination program continues, promotional product purchases will accelerate.

That’s not to mean that quarantines, closed businesses, and empty offices are finished. There will continue to be opportunity for creative marketing managers ready to leverage the right promotional product in the sales and branding cycle. Traditional trade shows are still scarce and the market slow, but areas like health care and apparel are seeing growth.

No one knows for certain how quickly we’ll get back to normal (or even what normal may look like). That said, business doesn’t slow down, and marketing managers need to seize the promotional opportunities out there.

The Top Promotional Product Trends in 2021

Markets and business are still volatile, but recovery is on the horizon. Let’s take a look at the promotional product trends you should keep an eye on in the new year.

Products for the Home (and Home Offices)

One effect of the pandemic has been more of us staying home. Whether it’s shutting down the office and letting employees work from home, or families holding off on a vacation or a trip to the mall, we’re all spending more time at home.

Promotional products that make life at home a little easier are extremely popular. Home office items are also trending. Look for products that help employees stay productive even when they are working from the kitchen table or in a spare bedroom that was quickly converted into a home office. Rechargers, zip drives, webcam covers or organizers are all popular items. Home stress relievers are also extremely popular as more and more of us handle the stress of work bleeding into home life.

Virtual Event Gifts and Giveaways

Another result of the pandemic has been the cancellation of many trade shows and events. In their place companies are hosting online and virtual events. Increasing attendance, building excitement, and leaving a last impression on attendees is a little more difficult for a virtual event. That’s where promotion product gifts and giveaways can help.

Look at sending attendees a gift before the event to build excitement. Put together a gift basket of related fun items to build even more excitement, making sure to incorporate your logo or customization. Giveaways during the event is another way to build attendance and excitement. Retail and brand name items are sure to catch attention.

Easing Back into the Office Items

Even as we continue to manage the effects of the pandemic, some companies are looking ahead. They are planning how to safely get back to work in the office. What will it look like, and how can company leadership help employees successfully make the transition back to the office?

While PPE items like masks and hand sanitizer are sure to be part of any back to work kit, you can also add a little fun and provide a morale boost with the right promotional product. Fun drinkware that can be easily sanitized, or a UV sanitizing kit, for example. Create an exciting welcome back kit to help ease the shock of going back to the office.

Eco-Friendly Promotional Products

People like environmentally friendly products. According to a recent study by ASI (Advertising Specialty Institute), 46% of consumers look more favorably on businesses that offer eco-friendly promotional products.

It’s a trend that will continue, as consumers pay more attention to corporate responsibility. They want to work with companies that share their values. By selecting eco-friendly products, using bamboo or recycled materials, you’re not only doing your part for our world, but also connecting favorably with your audience.

Retail and Name Brand Products

In the mind of consumers, a promotional product has a direct connection to your brand identity. Name brands matter to consumer. They want products they know and recognize. They recognize quality, and quality matters to them. It pays to use recognizable retail and name brand products in your promotional product strategy.

When you can provide a promotional product with a name brand you are providing a boost to your brand. Your product gains additional value in the eyes of the consumer. That value impacts your brand. The consumer will keep the product longer, and be more willing to show off and share the product.

Custom Options

Customization and custom options has been a growing trend, and that looks to continue in 2021. People want a custom, personalized experience. They want the brands they associate with to celebrate their individuality. A personalized product is unique, and that matters.

As you consider promotional products, look at products that can be personalized. Look at custom promotional products that provide that personalized experience for the consumer. Even small steps toward customization can help your business stand out.

Looking Ahead to a New Year in Promotional Products

Staying ahead of the trends and competition with your promotional products can be exhausting. This year, as all of us continue to grapple with change, a pandemic, and look ahead to recover, that is even more true.

If you have questions, or want to talk to the experts about your promotional product strategy, then contact GO2 Partners today. We’re not looking to be the lowest cost option for your promotional products, just the best option. That starts with our team of industry experts who can connect your business goals to your marketing strategy and promotion product innovation.

We’re here to help.

Topics: Promotional Products, brand promotion