Many companies – regardless of size – have a difficult time connecting with consumers on social media. Social media marketing best practices include researching your target audience and engaging in social listening, establishing an authentic and consistent brand voice, and tailoring your content for each social media platform used by your company on a regular basis.
Still, successful social media marketing is a time-consuming process and finding ways to grow your social media audience and engage your existing audience can be difficult.
Promotional products can help. Branded swag like apparel, accessories, drinkware, and outdoor gear can help nearly any size and type of company grow their social media audience and build both brand loyalty and brand engagement online.
Promotional Products Used as Social Media Contest Prizes Encourage Customer Engagement
Many companies use social media contests and sweepstakes to gain more likes, shares, and followers. Promotional products, when used as a social media contest prize, encourage your customers to act as brand ambassadors IRL as well as online. Whether your fans help promote your brand in public by using or wearing your company’s branded promotional products, or by creating and sharing authentic online content featuring your logo, promotional products encourage customer engagement even after a contest is over.
Falken Tire, a leading manufacturer of ultra high performance tires, uses branded promotional products as prizes for their weekly contests on Twitter. The frequency of these contests as well as the variety of custom prizes offered (ranging from branded bar stools to waterproof bags) helps explain the appeal of these promotions. These contests have likely helped contribute to the exponential growth of their Twitter account – Falken Tire has more than 760,000 followers on Twitter.
Thank you @FalkenTire I received my prize today!💓 A Greenlight – Artisan 1976 Ford Bronco Falken Tires 1:18 scale Die Cast. It’s Very Awesome! I will gladly add it to my collection!!! Thanks Again! 😃@GLCollectibles pic.twitter.com/NhCug7TLud
— Brad Dustin (@Bradical80) September 3, 2021
Publishing company Simon & Schuster also uses social media giveaways to engage their audience on social media platforms like Twitter and Instagram and promote upcoming book releases. They often use swag bags and boxes to get their audience excited about new books. A recent sweepstakes promoting bestselling author Jennifer Weiner’s latest book, That Summer, is a great example of the adage variety is the spice of life: besides a hardcover copy of the book, the main prize included limited edition promotional products such as a That Summer branded towel and tote bag. A watercolor oyster print and custom postcard rounded out this bundle of beach-themed swag.
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Swag Can Play an Important Role in your Company’s Influencer Marketing Strategy
Promotional products – when kitted and sent to loyal customers and social media influencers – can help produce user-generated content centered around your brand. Many brands struggle with authenticity on social media. According to SocialMediaToday: “Beyond being seen as the most authentic, user-generated content is also the most influential content consumers reference when making purchasing decisions.”
Beverage startup Hoplark recently sent some free products and company swag to podcast host, actor, and writer Sean Clements. After he shared a picture of these freebies with his 32K+ Twitter followers, Hoplark jumped in the reply thread and answered questions from potential customers regarding their unique product line of alcohol-free organic teas and waters, hopped like a craft beer.
In March of 2021, TikTok user Tyler Williams created a video that was liked more than 175K times featuring swag from the dating app he uses, Bumble. The bright yellow Bumble branded long-sleeve shirt included in the “care package” they sent him was used to illustrate his “perpetual singleness” while answering the TikTok challenge: Tell me you’re single without telling me you’re single. His caption for this viral video tagged Bumble with a simple message: appreciate the drip
We have no way of knowing if Williams – who has more than enough TikTok followers to be considered a social media influencer – was paid to promote Bumble or not. What we do know is that the content he created felt completely authentic and resonated with TikTok users – many of whom are in Bumble’s target market. For service companies such as dating apps, promotional products make a terrific influencer gifting option.
Don’t focus solely on building partnerships with paid influencers and celebrities. Any brand fan who is reputable and highly active on social media makes a great candidate for a thoughtful, custom swag package from your company. On newer social media networks like TikTok, anyone can create viral content – and delighting your customers with unexpected gifts like promotional products can help build brand loyalty and improve customer retention.
Elevate your Brand Image by Using Social Media to Promote Limited Edition Swag
In addition to growing brand loyalty and engagement, social media platforms can also help businesses sell promotional products as an additional revenue stream.
For businesses wondering how to promote promotional products available for purchase on their websites or online company stores, social media is one of the most effective and inexpensive digital marketing channels. Brand new, seasonal, or limited run items can help build brand loyalty and engagement and serve as an additional source of revenue. Social media is the ideal place to make your audience aware of these custom items, which can help your company build a legion of brand ambassadors across the country.
Dunkin’ regularly uses their social media accounts to advertise the latest branded promotional products available in their online company store, Dunkin’ Shop – including a recently launched line of wedding merchandise and onesies and scrunchies from their Charli x Dunkin’ collection, a collaboration between the quick service restaurant chain and social media influencer Charli D’Amelio. According to GQ, this “shrewd embrace” of social media and brightly colored, limited edition promotional products has helped turn Dunkin’ into a “lifestyle brand.”
America spikes on Dunkin’🔥🙌
— Dunkin’ (@dunkindonuts) July 20, 2021
Promotional Products Social Media Strategy
Promotional products and social media are a natural fit, enabling your company to make meaningful connections with new and existing customers. When utilized correctly, promotional products can help elevate your social media marketing strategy by increasing brand awareness, loyalty, and engagement.
For assistance with setting up a BrandHub Online Company Store for social media growth that will be filled with your own branded merchandise in 2021 and 2022, contact Metron Branding today or fill out the form below.