A Tale of Two Pens…

Fact: A lousy promotional product costs a lot more than a brilliant one. No matter what.

Once upon a time, there were two pen orders. Both orders were for 1000 pens that cost $.52 each. That’s where the similarity (and the math) ends.

1000 Scratchy Pens: $.52 each.

These pens were a great deal. They are rough writers, and the plunger rattles when you move your hand. Each pen you distribute is “accidentally” lost ASAP, and nobody seems to care. Truth is, your reps don’t like them and neither do you, so most lay abandoned in the closet for the next 3 years and are never given away. Finally, someone guiltily throws them away on clean-the-office day.

Total Cost: $520 (but they were a great deal)

Total Marketing Value: Below $0, since your company now appears as cheap as your scratchy pens. To make matters worse, your logo isn’t being exposed either, since your sales people aren’t proud to give their customers the pen, but have nothing better to offer.
Great news. The story didn’t have to end this way. Read on for a redemptive ending…

1000 Wonderful Pens: $.52 each.

These are the pens that clients refer to as “our pens”. They are beloved. Recipients ask for more every time they see you because they’re a favorite. Maybe the shape is different, maybe the colors are fun. Most important though, they write like a dream and everyone assumes they’re much more expensive than they actually are.

Total Cost: $520

Total Marketing Value: Amazing. Your pens are perceived as high-quality, which means your company is seen as high quality. Your logo gets passed around the universe, elevating your brand. Your employees feel pride and are able to use the pens as part of the value story they share with their customers and prospects. You gain market share, profits increase and birds tweet more merrily than ever before as your world brightens.

The lousy pens were a $520 expense.

The great pens were a $520 marketing investment with deliriously impressive ROI.

Moral of the story:

Sometimes a $.52 pen is exactly what you need. Make sure it’s the right $.52 pen. We’ll steer you in the right direction.