Promotional Merchandise – The Importance of Budget
What do we Mean by Budget?
If you wanted to buy a new car, you wouldn’t just turn up at the forecourt with no idea of what you plan to spend. Before even making the journey there, you would think about the various cars that fall within different price brackets, consider what you can afford, balance this with what you desire and start to include and discount models based on how they fall within this.
This thought process helps you to decide upon your budget – the amount of money you are willing and able to spend on a purchase.
Budget decided, you enter the showroom and inform the salesperson of this early on so that you and they can focus all time and efforts on finding you your perfect car, both of you happy in the knowledge that it meets your needs and is affordable for you. Everybody goes home happy!
Buying promotional merchandise is no different.
What do We Need from You?
When working with Firefly, we need you to have thought about and developed a sound understanding of your budget before we start the process of sourcing ideas and costs for you. The British Promotional Merchandise Associate (BPMA) has a helpful resource section, much of which you can access as a non-member. Spending some time here researching how to buy promotional merchandise and how it can help your brand could be a practical first step in determining your budget.
We understand that unless you do this often, you are unlikely to know the cost of various promotional items. You may not realise the price will be affected by the number of units you purchase, how you wish for the items to be branded, the quality you choose, and so on and so on…
That’s okay; we can help you with this! A quick call will allow us to discuss some options together, manage your expectations, and leave you with a realistic understanding of what will and will not fall within your budget.
You see, when a client comes to us with a brief, we go through a process of generating product ideas and presenting them along with branding options and pricing details. This takes considerable time and is a service we do not charge for, but one we feel is invaluable in helping you. However, it is a waste of time for everyone if you look through all of the ideas presented to you only to realise they cost more money than you are prepared to spend. Just one chat early on to help you understand likely costs can save hours of work for us and potential disappointment for you. There’s always the possibility you’ll be left with the realisation your budget will stretch further than you think! But first, you need to know what that budget is.
How much you can afford is for you to decide, but, as with any budget, be it personal or business, several aspects will impact how you land on a figure right for you. Let’s look at some factors you should consider when deciding on your promotional merchandise budget.
Considerations When Budget Setting
Your Event Calendar & Economies of Scale
How many events might you need merchandise for this financial year? Are there exhibitions you hope to attend? Will you be running promotions over Valentine’s Day, Easter, Christmas? Are product launches or giveaways part of your marketing strategy?
Often, purchasing higher volumes of an item results in a lower cost per unit than buying multiple smaller batches. So, if you are likely to want the same product for numerous occasions, thinking ahead and ordering with this in mind could help your budget stretch that little bit further.
Your Target Audience
Give yourself the best chance of achieving optimum returns from this investment by taking the time to profile your customers or target customers. Who are they? What do they do? What might they find useful? How will the promotional products you give them shape their opinion of your business? The more value they associate with the product, whether monetary value, usefulness or indulgence, the more value they associate with your brand. Think about these questions and budget accordingly. You can find some inspiration on our Case Studies page – we have worked on many exciting projects involving fabulous products.
Volume Versus Targeted
A high volume of low-priced items will reach many people. However, a more targeted approach, whereby a lower volume of high-end items is given to a more carefully selected group of people, will tend to have a more profound impact on the individual. Once again, think about what you hope to achieve from this exercise and ask yourself whether 1000 recycled plastic pens at £0.65 per unit or 50 higher-end engraved pens at £13.00 each will provide greater results. Both tactics are viable options, both cost the same amount of money overall, but it’s up to you to decide which is the best use of your budget.
Setting a budget involves in-depth thinking about your business, audience, aims, and desired outcomes. Therefore, to have a budget is to have a plan. Your budget will also help me to help you. I love nothing more than to source interesting, functional, sustainable and quality products for my clients. All I ask of you to be able to do this is that you provide me with the following information:
- Total budget I have to work with.
- How much per head and for how many people ie £5 per person x 1000 recipients or £50 per person x 100?
- A brief profile of the intended recipients or any product ideas you have that you think would provide the most significant impact.