Prospective customers judge promotional items on their quality, uniqueness, and usefulness. If you want your company’s name to be in view, you’ll want it emblazoned on an item that people like and use.
Don’t forget the “swagger” factor in swag. Manufactures report that materials most popular with promotional material recipients this year are made of stainless steel, leather, cork, or bamboo. In other words, a water bottle is cool, but a leather-covered, stainless steel water bottle is REALLY cool.
So what kind of promotional items are people loving in 2022?
- Bags, including backpacks and tote bags. These items offer a broad surface that can be imprinted, and they are extremely useful. Upgrade to computer cases for extra wow.
- Pens. While this falls into the office stuff below, pens are always one of the most popular items. Why? They get used, they are typically a less expensive item, and they work well with all types of events.
- Drinkware. We’re all carrying water with us now, and portable water bottles are in high demand. For promotional purposes, novelty pint glasses for beer are trendy.
- Home office stuff. Even if you’ve already returned to working face-to-face in an office setting, you’ll need notebooks, sticky notes, and pens. All make great, printable promo items. The antimicrobial mouse pad is trending, as it gives a nod to both the new safety concerns and functionality—and people tend to keep their favorite mouse pad for a LONG time.
- Apparel. T-shirts, hats, and jackets with company logos are a perennial favorite because they carry your brand name everywhere the wearer goes. A trend this year is embossing a company name—rather than printing—on a thick material like the front of a sweatshirt. Embossing is surprisingly readable and lasts through many launderings.
- Workout gear. Most of us put on the pandemic pounds, and now we’re trying to work them off. Some pieces of exercise equipment, like balls and resistance bands, can carry a company’s imprint to the gym and back. Personal-sized workout towels are inexpensive and extremely brandable.
- Toys. This category includes anything that’s fun to own or that people use while having fun, such as beach balls, golf balls, sunglasses, and cool stickers. Even fun keychains are popular, and stress balls might be more important than ever.
- Phone accessories. Phone chargers and power packs are welcome everywhere, but earphones or ear buds also made recipients happy. Popular in 2022: Wireless phone chargers.
- Kitchen things. All kitchen items saw a resurgence during the shutdown, as people learned or relearned how to cook. Bamboo utensils are most popular here. Reusable drinking straws also get complimentary reviews.
- Comfort items: Lip balm, blankets, candles, massagers, and paper embedded with seeds that grow into flowers. Coziness has never been more important than it is in 2022.
It’s nice to choose an item that is somehow related to your business, but most important in 2022 is something that makes people feel good. They’ll use a feel-good item—and see your brand—for the rest of the year and possibly for years to come.