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Key Trends in Promotional Products for the Holidays

Key Trends in Promotional Products for the Holidays


While no one can be sure what the leading promo products for this year’s holidays will be until early in the new year when retail registers stop ringing and scores are tallied, some trends emerged from the 2017 PPAI (Promotional Products Association International) Expo that may guide your strategy — and help you select and deliver a corporate gift that resonates with recipients. 

Technology is in.

There’s a good chance you’ll make a great choice if you give something related to technology, which is the fastest-growing category of executive gifts. According to ASI (Advertising Specialty Institute®), the usefulness of a promo item is the recipient’s primary reason for keeping it.

So, giving away a tech product that’s useful not only helps ensure that the recipient will be pleased with your selection, it also indicates that the promo product has a high potential for generating continued brand exposure.

Plain clothing is out.

Giving workers (or clients) fun apparel has been a hot promo product trend for 2017 — but the trick is creating and presenting something they want to wear outside the workplace.

Two tips: 1) They’re looking for employee appreciation gifts with more than just a logo — perhaps including an attractive graphics or pattern, and 2) they want premium performance. For example, moisture-absorbing clothing items with odor control properties over plain cotton or wool.

Higher value is in.

Resist the urge to pinch pennies with promotional products! Now more than ever, executive gift recipients are casting a critical eye on the ad specialties they receive — making a direct correlation to the organization handing them out.

Not surprisingly, giving out cheaper products communicates that you didn’t put much time and effort into considering gifts for your clients. Industry experts observe that higher-value items are more effective in gaining and retaining quality leads.

Disposable is out.

Today’s consumers are becoming more conscious about environmental issues and are increasingly becoming loyal to brands that endorse green-themed promotions.

Socially responsible brands and eco-friendly promotional gifts will continue to be popular in promotional circuits. Some of the executive gift items that can be considered include natural-fabric tote bags, metal water bottles, and other client or employee appreciation gifts made from recycled materials or recyclable products.

Name brands are in.

Millennials (i.e., individuals born between 1982 and 2004) and Gen Xers (i.e., people born between 1965 and 1981) are especially attracted to brand names as opposed to unbranded or generic promotional items.

The good news? Considering water bottles, for example: Avex®, CamelBak®, Contigo® and Nalgene® are just a few retail names that are creating a buzz in the promo products industry. With so many brands to choose from there’s one in just about every style, size and price point to meet your needs!


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