The overarching goal of almost every business card is to get someone to save your contact information, and why they want that contact info to begin with. While it is nice to think everyone is saving our business cards, often times those we give them to do not have enough current interest to not trash it, or sometimes lose them through sheer accident, wholly unrelated to disinterest in your product. Thus, if a product or a creative card makes that contact info and purpose available to the receiver for a longer amount of time and more easily, that can greatly help you reach your organization’s goals. In this article we will be going over the benefits and hurdles that come with using other merchandise.

There are effects to consider, largely positive but possible complications you may run into, depending on what you aim to achieve. The good is that you can reach a target audience that would otherwise be the type to not hold on to business cards, while selecting who that audience will be based on what the item is. You can use it to increase brand awareness, especially on wearable items or items like refrigerator magnets that get a lot of impressions for the cost. Sometimes though, the cost you put into the items may not equal what you get in return.

Truly it depends on what kind of services you are marketing, and how likely the recipient is interested or likely to become a customer. If you are, say, a college apparel and textbook retailer, then you will likely not want to make something expensive like t-shirts or flash drives and distribute them to those who aren’t involved in all with the school. But for another (positive) example, if you are at a convention for finding real estate agents and apartment complexes that is aimed at people looking for a place to live, then what you have is a very targeted audience. In these situations, it is financially sound to spend a little bit more money on properly branded merch. T-Shirts with well-made designs and quality material, normally cost quite a bit for what you get out of them, but at a gathering like that, the attendees are very likely to become clients, and it is a small investment for the benefit you get from it.

Ultimately, the best situations to opt for something better than a business card is those that if you gave them a business card, at the end of the day’s event they likely would not be able to distinguish yours from your competition. There is a large reason businesses give out “swag” at conventions and things of that nature. But for day to day interpersonal interactions, the object needs to be portable, and easy to store if someone does not have a backpack or purse on them. Think sticky notes or pens. And it’s even better if your item has something to do with your company. If you are a law firm that specializes in tech privacy, giving away a novel object like a laptop webcam blocker or a bakery could give away a booklet with their info on the front and recipes inside.

For more ideas for promotional products and alternatives for business cards, contact RiverCity Screenprinting & Embroidery at their Austin or San Marcos, TX locations.