What defines a promotional product?

Insider Information on "Why marketing with promotional products is right for your business!"

What makes a product a promotional product? What unique characteristics makes a regular product a promotional product?


There are many differing definitions to be found online as to what and what does not constitute what makes a product a promotional product. In fact the wikipedia definition goes into great detail about the parameter of promotional products (aka swag).

However, in 2020 the world of promotional products much has changed. So instead of adding to an already muddled series of differing definitions as to what makes and does not make for a promotional product. Lets do some clarification.

A promotional product is the same as any other product except it has a clients business logo on it.

In its most basic definition the above is absolutely true. Any product, be it a physical product (something you can touch, hold etc) or a digital product (software app etc) that has a logo, brand or marketing message from it some other business other than the business who actually made it can be considered a promotional product.

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marketing ideas for 2020
marketing ideas for 2020

Don’t be confused!

If Pepsi-Cola puts their logo on a POP phone socket stand and hands that out to employees, clients or prospects then it is most definitely a promotional product.

However, if Pepsi-Cola gives their employees, clients or prospects a bottle or case of Pepsi, even though that has their logo on it, it is NOT a promotional product, instead it is a gift.

What does swag mean?

Swag has an interchangeable meaning with promotional product. Over the pas 4 or 5 years their has been a generational component to the interchangeability of the 2 terms. Promotional Products trend towards an older user while SWAG tends to trend younger. SWAG also links well with the word swagger, now in common usage. Swagger meaning stylish, cool. It is quite as simple as that.

Is Swag less expensive than a promotional product?

No. Once again it tends to be a generational perception. Everyone knows that the Oscars have amazing Swag bags….bags full of freebies with logos on them. Probably named so as Promotional Product bag does not sound very swaggery!

There is a movement amongst some promotional product professionals to try and distance themselves from the term swag by demeaning it as “cheap, beneathe their contempt”. However, the average age of promotional products professionals is somewhere north of 60, while the average business marketers age is 32. The 32 year old prefers Swag.

SWAG is Stuff We All Get!

There’s an acronym for everything. Swag has become, Stuff We All Get. Which sounds suspiciously like a promotional product. So does that clarify it for you. Simple.

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Who Is Promotional Product Direct?

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Connect with our expert promotional product sales experts. To visit the sales office nearest you simply click on your closest region.

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