When a company wants to purchase promotional gear, its executives want to choose a design that attracts customers to its products or services in order to maximize brand exposure.
To choose the right design to do that, however, a company needs to use the same methods design professionals in promotional gear companies do. In his September 2016 article in PrintSome, British designer Harald Meyer-Delius shares some of his secrets.
Choose a Design Compatible with the Chosen Print Technique
Unless a company has prior experience with logo printing on various mediums, its graphic design department may not be aware of all of the nuances of specialized printing, particularly if the medium is a garment. Meyer-Delius recounts, “A customer…decided to make something ‘cool…’ The customer’s graphic design department worked for weeks on the order to create a design that would knock the socks off its target market, says Meyer-Delius. Yet when the design came in to Meyer-Delius’s company, the printers soon discovered that the printing process the client had chosen could not be used with the design the company proposed.
Money wasted, lesson learned. When a company promotes its business with a printed logo on a garment or other specialized material, it needs to consult the printers to see if the design will work within the parameters of the final product before it puts its internal team of graphic designers to work. This applies to other specialty items, too, such as cups, napkins, or even keychains. Not every printing medium will work with a given design. Consult the specialty printing company before going to the drawing board.
Consider the Message and the Medium as One
When a company looks for promotional gear, it needs to look into items that its logo and message will pair well with. A formal wear company, for instance, may be better off choosing tasteful disposable champagne glasses with a classy logo to promote its merchandise, while a soft drink manufacturer may choose plastic mugs or t-shirts to advertise its casual appeal.
Set the Rules and Goals Early On
Meyer-Delius stresses that it’s important for companies to set their promotional goals and standards early in the process. A company may, for example, decide that it wants to target a certain segment of the population with a given promotion. That, in turn, determines what promotional products they will use to reach its target market with its message.
The company’s creative team also need to consult the company’s style guidelines. Many companies have rules that spell out in great detail the types of messages and mediums that its employees may or may not use in communications, promotional or otherwise.
Often, the time frame to accomplish a promotional campaign figures into the mix. If a company wants to promote its products as holiday gifts, the design team and copywriters must have a production-ready logo and slogan ready early enough for the printing company to create and deliver the promotional gear for their holiday campaign. The same is true for other promotions as well. A design team needs to set deadlines that work well with the goals of the campaign.
With these practical tips, companies can create campaigns that promote brand awareness using promotional gear with confidence, knowing that their branded swag will help them tell their company’s story to more potential customers.