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So far Ingrid Crowther has created 15 entries.

Promotion Strategy

When planning a promotion strategy we first consider what we are trying to gain from the promotion. In the previous post we covered the benefits of using promotional items for your brand versus more mainstream advertising. Keeping those benefits in mind, the next step is to consider your strategy. In this article we will discuss the steps you will take to plot your strategy, which areas you will need to investigate to make certain you are making an informed decision for your market and brand. In follow up articles, we will cover the best ways to gain the information you will need to make these decisions.

While you are in the process of developing your market strategy, there are some important steps to follow in order to gain the most exposure for your promotion.



The first step is to distinguish your market into defined sectors. You cannot please a market as a whole. In partitioning them into separate groups, you can approach each group individually to guarantee more success with a focussed marketing campaign.
The second step is to focus on which sectors to communicate with and what means of communication you will use. Once you have subdivided your market into different sectors you can approach each group as a separate sector. This will allow you to focus on each groups core wants and needs, whereby showing you which form of communication will be most effective.
The third step is situating your brand in the way that you want it to be perceived by these sectors. Each core focus group will have a different opinion of your brand or will never have heard of it. This step […]

The Benefits of Promotional Gifting



In this article Promo Connection focuses on the advantages of using promotional material to market your brand or product versus using more mainstream advertising. ASI’s 2014 Global Advertising Specialties Impressions Study, which is a cost analysis of promotional products versus other advertising media, found high-impact cost-effective logoed items can allow even small companies to achieve as high an ROI as major corporations.
Promo Connection has found over the years that there are a few key areas in marketing that promotional gear cover far more effectively than any other marketing tactic. We briefly cover these areas below to show how advantageous branded promotional items can be to your business.

The key objective for any business is brand awareness and recognition. Being able to reach customers, both old and new, with a customised item that is front and centre of their everyday lives can effectively maintain an awareness of your brand. A branded USB with a web key to your website can be an effective way to remind your customers of your business on a daily basis.

Another, and certainly important, advantage to promotional items is that they can be low cost while reaching a mass audience. When a small marketing budget limits your advertising options, you can reach a larger audience and create a more lasting impression with ROI products. A pen with your company logo is a cost-effective way to get exposure for you brand while an in-store prize or sale give-away can easily generate a consumer bond with your brand.

Promotional items can also be functional by serving as a business or calling card. Instead of your standard card, printing your company’s details onto a practical promotional item that will be at the forefront […]


Over the passed ten years we have built up a catalogue of over 350, high perceived-value items for any event, activation or campaign that will benefit from choosing the right promotional product: an item that your target audience will appreciate and walk away with, remembering your brand and what you can offer them. Having access to the best options is the easy part, choosing the best items for your brand activation is not as easy.

As brand experts, we can not only source and supply what you need, but we can help you on the journey. Many of our clients come to us with a vision of how they’d like things to look, but they’re unsure of the steps that they need to take to get them there. Some of our clients come to us after feeling like they’re stuck on a plateau and they are bored with the same tired solutions to promote their brand with products that never seem to get the traction they were hoping for.
Whilst we approach every client with a level unique differentiation and an appreciation to their specific brand identity, there are a few guidelines that we’d like to share with you that help us and could help you too when choosing the right promotional product.

It’s not good enough to think that everyone appreciates a ‘free lunch’. Just because you’re planning on giving stuff away, doesn’t necessarily mean that everyone will appreciate it. If your target audience were aged 55+, they probably wouldn’t value a memory stick. If they’re 16-25, they might be far less keen on branded pen and leather notebook, which research shows, is a preferred item in older demographics.
You also need […]

By |June 12th, 2014|Categories: Blog||Comments Off


When times are tough and consumers are counting their pennies, giving away free promotional items remains one of the most effective marketing strategies the world over. Giving away a free gift with your product differentiates it in three immediate ways:
1. Shelf value is higher
2. Auxiliary benefit is greater
3. Brand awareness is elevated
Take a moment to think about your own purchase behaviour when buying a gift for a family holiday. For Father’s Day, you’ll be more inclined to buy the cologne that comes with a toiletry bag or a limited edition pen than one that’s standing all by itself. Not only will you notice the gift-pack cologne, but you’ll also notice a brand that you may not always look for, you’ll feel that there is more benefit to buying a cologne with a free-gift (because your gift is now bigger too!!) and when comparing other items on the shelf, the gift-pack will stand out from the rest.
Think about having to buy a list of supplements at the pharmacy. You’ll pick up bottle after bottle to see how many pills are inside and how many you need to take. A pack of 90 may seem cheaper than a pack of 30, but if you have to take three a day, it will last for the same time. However, if you can get a pack of 90 with an extra supplement for free, or a special free recipe booklet, you’ll go with that option over your normal choice of 30.
Why? Because gift packs can make all the difference in influencing consumer behaviour.
If you go to your local Network operator and they have a device that comes with a free cover, you’ll be more inclined to consider that […]

By |June 7th, 2014|Categories: Blog||Comments Off

Coca-Cola Invents 16 Crazy Caps to Turn Empty Bottles Into Useful Objects Ogilvy’s ’2nd Lives’ campaign By Gabriel Beltrone

Rejoice, happy-go-lucky and environmentally conscious Coca-Cola lovers. Thanks to this new “2nd Lives” kit from the brand, you can now transform your Coke into something even more delightful.
Is that just an empty soda bottle? Nope, it’s a squirt gun. Useless piece of trash? Nope, it’s a pencil sharpener, or the perfect rattle for your baby. Make your children happy. Give them Coca-Cola, and toys made from Coca-Cola. And if you have two empty Coke bottles, you can even make a dumbbell to burn off some of the calories you gained by guzzling both.
Created with the help of Ogilvy & Mather China, the campaign features a line of 16 innovative caps that can be screwed on to bottles when they’re empty, transforming them into useful objects like water guns, whistles, paint brushes, bubble makers and pencil sharpeners. It’s all part of a clever effort to encourage consumers in Vietnam to recycle, and a rare success at the sort of alchemy that seeks to reincarnate garbage as advertising (even if such attempts are a cornerstone of the marketing industry). Coke will give away 40,000 of these modified caps, which come in 16 different varieties, to start.
It’s not clear if the add-ons themselves are made from recycled material. Even if they are, producing more plastic parts might not be the best way to reduce plastic waste.
But that’s beside the point. While the caps might not quite hit the sharing chord as clearly as the it-takes-two-to-open bottles, they’re a smart bit of advertising. “What if empty Coke bottles were never thrown away?” the campaign asks. Clearly, it would mean people everywhere could finally live in a utopia where everything was made of Coke products.

By |June 6th, 2014|Categories: Blog||Comments Off

Self-liquidating promotions

We were recently asked by a local magazine to do a Q and A on Self-liquidating promotions in South Africa. below are the questions and Answers we gave, hope you find them insightful. Self – Liquidating promotions refer to a sales promotion in which the cost of the campaign is covered by the incremental revenue generated by the promotion and the brand itself.

1. What part does technology play in the self-liquidating promotions game? 

Studies show that social media marketing campaigns (internet marketing), when designed and executed properly do affect buying behaviour and do increase sales as a result. Social media efforts create long term improvement in customer engagement. In saying this, selling directly via social media does not work, you have to stimulate the engagement by your community in an engaging way.  

2. What platforms work best in terms of advertising and maintaining momentum in promotions?

Twitter – you can interact directly with brands and customers, multiple times per day. Relevance is the key to making your voice heard on Twitter. Another good platform for advertising is Facebook. Of all social networks, Facebook is best equipped to continuously share responses to a post asking a question or sparking conversation. Answers then appear in friends of your respondents, spreading the conversation, which is great for advertising.  

3. What tech products have proven to be the most widely distributed and which have proven to be the most popular? (i.e. just because everyone gives away flash disks doesn’t mean everyone thinks it’s a great corporate gift) 

We at Promo Connection have distributed a large number of earphones and headphones over the last two years. We believe that this has been a great techi gift as they have a high perceived value and […]

By |June 5th, 2014|Categories: Blog||Comments Off


There is one item that has become an accessory that is both a necessity and status symbol. It’s been around decades longer than the tablet and cellphone and it comes in almost any shape, size and colour you can imagine.
First worn only by women in the late 15th century, they are now everywhere: from deep-sea divers to pilots and astronauts. Impressed? Then why don’t you have one with you name on it?
If you want people looking at your brand, several times a day, then a wristwatch is a sure-fire way to do that. What do you keep glancing at when your phone battery dies and you’re late for a meeting? Which watch do you choose for a formal function or a day at the beach?
The more you think about it, the more you realise that watches are everywhere and are looked at all the time. People even show them to their friends… Perhaps your brand could benefit from a stylish, high-perceived-value watch.
One of the latest fashion statements in the watch-world is the silicone watch. From Swatch to Woolworths’ house-brand to every China Town kiosk, these trendy chronometers come in lumo colours (trending right now), are light and comfortable and cost considerably less than they look.
They look awesome in large quantities, making them ideal options for activation events at the beach, in the mall or at a trade show. In a collection of colours or stacked in funky tubes, they’ll quickly be swept up and slapped on wrists.
No matter what your brand CI, we can create a campaign around a watch that would best enhance and expand your brand. Silicone watches are hot right now, but our options are not limited to these options. We’ve […]

By |April 21st, 2014|Categories: Blog|Tags: , |Comments Off


When you think about a bank you probably think the following: stress, long waits, boring colours, expensive fees and complex forms and procedures. If you do, you wouldn’t be far wrong as these emotions are mostly based on your experience: in the bank, on the phone and on their website. For the Capitec brand campaign, this was not the case.
Take a quick look at their website ( and you’ll see immediately that they’re different. They say that they’re simple banking; and they are. They say that their fees are less; and they are. They’re open and transparent and instil a level trust and confidence. It’s no wonder they’re one of South Africa’s top five banks and are the fastest growing bank.
With this as our base to build a branded campaign, our focus was on their brand colours, youthful vibrancy, practical items that would be worn and enjoyed (timing was for winter) and high visibility branding options.

Capitec knows that the future of banking lies within the younger market and wants to establish itself as a trusted brand for future markets as well as present. We chose items that would be happily worn by young people during their normal activities: walking to college and hanging out with their friends. Capitec’s logo works best in a narrow strip layout, which was also carefully considered when designing and branding the promotional items for them.
We looked at the positive and negative spaces within their logo and explored ways in which we could use these to increase brand prominence without creating something that’s overly branded and would simply be tossed into a cupboard and never worn out an about.
We are proud to work with a bank that steps out of the […]

By |April 7th, 2014|Categories: Blog||Comments Off


As a South African based brand and image building company, we take pride in using as many local service providers as possible and make it our priority to support local entrepreneurs. From textiles to transport, our database reaches many corners of this beautiful country.
But we are where we are because of our ability to think out of the box and to make our creative ideas a reality, no matter how they may look.
This means that our supply chain cannot be confined to the corners of South Africa, but needs to extend to the corners of the globe. One of the hotspots of our supply pool is China – a mega-supplier of pretty much anything that you can conceive. Whilst the vast variety is its strength, it is also its biggest downfall.
Anyone with an Internet connection and a fax line can order from China. It’s neither difficult nor is it rocket science. However, very few can get it right.
The primary reason lies in the colossal culture and language differences.
Through our years of importing high-perceived value items for a myriad of clients we’ve picked up on the nuances and niggles of importing. You can plan for the costs and the timeframes, but you can never plan for what you’ll find in the boxes that come out of your crate at the dockyard. Not if you’ve never actually been to the factory…
Just because the catalogue, order forms and invoices say one thing, the reality of what you hold in your hand may be something very different.
Every year we send members of our team to the trade-shows and manufacturers in China. We get to shake the hands of our Oriental colleagues, touch and feel the […]

By |March 17th, 2014|Categories: Blog||Comments Off


Not all branded promotional items are quick and easy. In fact, most of them aren’t. We’re not talking about sorting out 2000 t-shirts for your fun run or 500 pens for a workshop that you’re hosting. We’re talking about the cup that you drink out of at Vida E, or the Richelieu mountain bike that was given away at your local Spar. We’re talking about the beach balls and air mats at the Sky Vodka beach parties, or the Ferrari watches that you’ve seen some of your friends wearing.
These are items that don’t merely bear the icons of our clients: they carry their values, ideals and core messages. Selecting a collection of items that will empower and enhance our clients’ brands is a deeply involved process that spans a journey of several months and lasts for several years.
At Promo Connection, we’re not just about slapping logos on caps, t-shirts and pens for the sake of a once-off activation. We focus on engaging with our client’s existing brand identity and creating a roadmap and product portfolio to drive and carry them forward, ahead of their competition.
But what does this really mean? Neville Isdell, former CEO of Coca Cola, gives an encouraging account of how he led the turnaround of a declining Coke brand. It also speaks to the depth and integrity of a brand identity that is constantly communicated through a vast range of media. This is that we work with.
As the story goes, Isdell took over 100 of his top managers at Coca Cola and put them in a room for three days to discuss the negatives of the brand. His reasoning? “We need to stay ahead of the game by looking at the […]

By |March 3rd, 2014|Categories: Blog||Comments Off