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Raising the value and use of Promotional Products

Promotional Products Week 2015 certainly did invoke ACTION!

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The third Promotional Products Week (PP Week) got off to a flying start in September with the release of new research from organisers, the British Promotional Merchandise Association (bpma) into marketer’s attitudes to branded merchandise. Activities throughout the week engendered many thousands of media impressions as member companies swung into action in support of this important industry initiative.

The pen still prevails as the promotional item of choice with 91% of respondents saying it tops their list. The survey also suggests that buyers want quality gifts that are useful, relevant and memorable. Association members shared the research findings on social media and in email communications with their customers and the wider marketing community in general.


The theme this year was “Promotional Products Invoke Action” which was designed to encourage the sharing of photos of branded merchandise being used, many of which were displayed on the bpma Pinterest and Facebook pages.

Hundreds of #PromoThePanda cuddly toys supplied by Ravensden were distributed too, with ‘panda’ appearing in all sorts of locations and photos that were widely shared on social media. The bpma embarked on a week-long campaign to promote buying from a bpma member and why promotional merchandise should be used as a key part of all companies marketing mix. 

Mailing pieces and emails were sent to thousands of marketers and buyers with personalised Cross pens and phone chargers supplied by Desktop Ideas also being sent to a number of media personalities. The bpma team also took to the streets of London in support of the campaign lobbying big businesses, marketers and the general public at a variety of locations across the capital, with PP Week clothing sponsor Elevate providing garments especially produced for the occasion. The culmination of the week was the celebration of the bpma’s 50th Birthday with an evening champagne reception and cruise on the Thames through London which was enjoyed by more than 100 guests.

Member activity in support of PP Week included:

  • Leading distributor Brand Addition kicked off the week on twitter using #PPWeek and a morning cup of tea, to demonstrate that a free toy in limited edition packs of PG tips is a desired commodity.
  • The Sourcing Team held a showcase event and invited their customers along. A wide range of branded merchandise from key suppliers was available and nearly £1,000 was raised for charity.
  • Liverpool based Wildthang ran competitions and numerous email campaign’s sharing industry research and were also involved in a Free Liverpool fundraising concert generating £2,000 for charity.
  • In Leicester Everything Branded sent out a customer-wide awareness e-shot followed by daily offers including free selfie sticks and power banks.
  • London distributor Outstanding Branding charmed the morning commuters at London Bridge station with offers of branded love hearts whilst raising money for charity. The whole team wore branded clothing with company mascot Clara the cow taking centre stage.
  • In addition to supporting #PromoThePanda, the BTC Group used branded selfie sticks and other products as part of a wide-ranging awareness campaign.
  • Allwag Promotions of Chelmsford released 2,000 branded balloons as part of a charity balloon race for the Helen Rollason Cancer charity with a chance to win a free balloon ride.

Many trade suppliers supported the week with product getting involved in a wide range of activities through promotional merchandise distributors.

The director general of the bpma, Gordon Glenister commented “We have put a lot of effort into raising the profile of the promotional products industry throughout the week and I am pleased to see so many of our members getting behind this important initiative.”

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