October 3rd, 2018 BY Douglas Lober

How Churches Can Benefit from Promotional Products

For millennia, churches in particular and spiritual organizations in generatal have built structures in which to practice sacred rights, commune with one another through song and prayer, and strengthen community ties.

The purpose of a church or religious institution, at its foundation, is to provide a welcoming safe haven for those seeking the presence of the divine. What better way to do that than get the word out to the greatest extent possible?

Believe it or not, promotional products can help you do just that.

A Recognizable Brand and Logo Helps Everyone

“Branding” has become such a buzzword today that it often proves off-putting. We perceive a brand as a bright, glitzy and driven by material concerns. How can those in the service of God legitimize an approach that seems so salesy and often cheap?

This, while a common perception, is also a false one. The definition of brand, according to the American Marketing Association, is a “name, term, design, symbol, or any other feature that identifies one seller’s good or service as distinct from those of other sellers.” (1)

Before you point to terms like sellers, good and service, stop and thinking for a moment: Aren’t you actually providing a service to your congregation? The ability to get closer to God and others who believe in him? The answer is a clear yes, so it’s better to think of branding simply as the public image you present to the world, the face that your congregation and non-members see and embrace.

Custom Products Can Help Drive Conversations

Gift giving is an age-old tradition that helps inspire friendship, cement bonding and begin relationships on the right foot. No organization needs these more than a church. Good news: It’s actually pretty simple to use them to drive conversations.

Introducing yourself to a potential member of your church can feel intimidating, and an ice-breaker is always appreciated. Well-branded collateral can provide that ice-breaker, offering both a talking point and a gift of goodwill. Whether you hand out pretty notebooks or well-made keychains, giving something before you ask to share your point of view can pave the way to a lifelong relationship with your church and you.

Calendars Help New and Existing Members Engage More Fully

Most churches offer a Sunday service. However, almost all of them offer other times of community worship as well. Whether a preacher gives additional sermons on Wednesday nights, a Bible study group meets once or twice a week, or individual speakers share their experiences with the divine, it’s important the congregation stay informed.

By giving them a tool that helps them track dates and special events, you invite fuller participating both from your congregation – and from potential new members of your church.

Promotional Items Help Attract New Members

You can’t entice anyone to the doors of your church if they don’t know you’re there. While using promotional items may feel disingenuous for the same reason that “branding” does, this too is a misconception. Promo items are simply gifts that tell those who see them where to find more spiritual healing and community.

You never know who really needs a push in the right direction on any given day, and putting your symbol and love out into the world can offer it to them in a time of need. Just make sure your items are actually useful, or not only will they get discarded quickly, you do run the risk of seeming ingenuine.

Promo Products Can Also Offer Much-Needed Information

There’s no rule stating that the content adorning promotional items must be confined to a logo and the name of your religious organization. You can put whatever information you want on stickers, water bottles and shirts, including dates and times of big events or regular worship. That way, congregation members and seekers alike know when to pay your institution a visit for a hit of good old-fashioned worship.

Moreover, promo items can inspire interest in annual or seasonal events. Past shirts indicate interest in particular charities or activities that resonate with others, drawing them to your doors on special days – and perhaps from there, every week for the rest of their lives. Think of this as marketing to their souls, and you’ll do just fine.

Freebies Increase the Impact of Community Events

Giving everyone a special something helps fuel the community spirit during your event as well as leave attendees with a token afterward. Think shirts for race days or lip balm for health events. This is a good tactic for charity events, particularly those attended by needier families and children. The have-nots are even likelier than the haves to appreciate your gift and use it long-term.

There exist plenty of other good ideas when it comes to using promotional items intelligently, as we discuss in a recent post, 10 Brilliant Ideas for Reusable Promo Items. Think planters for springtime events, desk items for office staff or partners, and glassware for grand openings or charities – among others.

The Right Promotional Products Help Us Steward the Earth

One of the mandates of any religion is to safeguard our planet, along with its people and animals. Trashing up the environment, poisoning oceans and waterways, polluting the air and adding to landfill is no way to do that.

For that reason, conscientious church leaders do everything they can to respect the Earth’s natural ecology and refrain from adding to our collective footprint. That’s where reusable promos come in. High-quality items such as clothing, drink glasses or desktop accessories can help get the message out without landing in the trash bin mere days or weeks later. Their longer life also increases their marketing power, giving them a chance to reach even more prospective members.

If you’d like to learn more about what promotional products can do for your church, we invite you to get in touch with us today.