Many marketers consider 'Branded Promotion Merchandise' (BPM) programmes to be the best marketing tools for strengthening existing customer relationships and developing new prospects, according to a study by market research firm Advanis for Canada-based loyalty and BPM programme provider Promotion Resource Group.
The study marketing professionals (buyers) and recipients (customers and employees) throughout Canada found that BPM was the most popular option by a margin of four to one (52%, compared to 13% for the second closest category: Television).
For the purpose of the study, BPM was defined as "premiums and incentives featuring company logos or brand marks that are given to existing customers and prospects in appreciation for their business and their loyalty".
The survey's results indicated that, among recipients of BPM incentives who already had a "favourable" impression of the featured company or brand, almost half (47%) said that their impression of the company had changed to "very favourable". And among those with a "somewhat favourable" impression, almost as many (41%) said their impression had improved as well. Of those with "no impression" of the company, more than half (51%) said their initial opinion of the company was "positive".
According to Phil Dwyer, vice president for Advanis, "Among marketers who buy premiums and incentives, 58% said BPM campaigns are the best way to increase customer loyalty - better than television, radio, print, billboard or online advertising."
Driving purchase intention
The survey's respondents also confirmed that BPM does play a role in driving improvements in opinion and purchase intentions. For example, in the Bags and Luggage reward category, of those who had received these items in a promotion, 37% said that the experience "might have influenced" their decision to do business with the company, while 25% said it "definitely influenced" their decision.
Overall, across all product categories, 33% of respondents said that BPM programmes "might have influenced" their purchase intentions, while 25% said they had "definitely influenced" their decision to purchase from a company.
Interestingly, almost one-third (32%) of the marketing professionals surveyed indicated that their company would increase spending on BPM programmes in 2006.
The survey's results have been published in a white paper entitled Important Trends in Branded Promotion Merchandise - a Survey of Buyers and Recipients, available from Promotion Resource Group.