FIVE Reasons Why Swag, NOT Ads Might Boost Your Startup 

Boost Your Startup
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Count your pennies 

All companies want to Digital ads work on a budget but startups have to decide where they’re allocating their finances more than most. After all the initial, unavoidable costs such as staff wages, new inventory, and infrastructure, marketing is often the last check box to be ticked on a startup’s list. With the little money left after all these other expenses, and whatever change can be found at the back of the sofa, startups typically don’t have the luxury of multiple ad campaigns from signage to digital marketing. If you want to boost your startup but don’t want to break the bank for your marketing budget, this article is for you

Boost Your Startup with An Alternative to Digital Marketing

Having to choose just one marketing strategy is tough. Is it a risk to run Google Ads before your business has taken off? Could LinkedIn Sales Navigator really be worth it? Is there any harm in hoping to grow through word of mouth and hope for the best?

It is true that these are all strategies that have worked for innumerable startups. However, we think there might be a secret to marketing success. A secret some entrepreneurs don’t even think about when starting a new business: Swag.

Don’t close your tab, stay out of my Twitter DM’s, and leave my inbox alone. Invest in custom t-shirts and branded tech instead of Instagram ads and sponsored posts. This might sound like a guaranteed way to go bankrupt within a year. On the other hand, swag is a multi-dimensional marketing tool. It could be the secret strategy your startup needs for success.

Digital marketing is a sound strategy but it’s not suitable for every startup

Five Reasons Why Swag Can Boost Your Startup 


Digital ads have gained flattering praise as being cheap and an almost guaranteed way for your targeted demographics to discover the wonders of your new business. But is this really true?

Digital ads are actually pretty expensive. All businesses want to go after popular keywords. They all want to be the first thing users see when they Google their search. However, you might be surprised that these ‘pay-for-click’ campaigns easily enter the ‘thousands of dollars’ territory.

You might have to pay more in initial costs for swag but over the course of a few months. Bear in mind, the prices will be comparable, depending on the custom merch that you buy.

While everyone is sick of digital ads cluttering up their newsfeeds, freebies, and cool gear is more popular than ever.

If you’ve got the money, you can invest in every marketing strategy under the sun… but most startups aren’t that lucky

BoostyYour startup by showing off your brand 

Plastic bottles are awesome. People line up for cheap keyrings. A USB flash drive is what all the kids are after. Alright, that’s a joke but buying the right swag can do wonders in showing the values your emerging business is aligned to.

From environmentally-friendly business practices to supporting other diverse, independent businesses can be achieved through swag. Sure, you can advertise that you collaborate with BIPOC businesses, or talk about how you put the planet first but it’s a lot more impactful when it’s at the core of your business.

Business growth can be achieved through swag.


Company Culture

Did you know that companies with an established company culture have a turnover rate of 13.9%, compared to 48.4% for those with no clear identity? And that 57% of consumers have a more positive opinion about a brand that gave them a promotional shirt. Nothing unites your team more than having the same gear, branded logos, and custom backpacks. Swag does all this while promoting your business and raising awareness at the same time.

Boost productivity and increase morale through custom merch

Boost your startup by finding the best talent

It’s a risk for top talent to choose a startup rather than a multinational company. Whereas a startup might go bust before its unpacked all its boxes, working for a larger corporation will typically result in stock dividends and a path for future growth.

While there are also benefits to going with a startup, nothing gives prospective employees more jitters than being given a cheap ballpoint and a tatty notebook on their first day.

By providing a ‘Welcome Pack’ Branded Kit, you can show that your business means business. A Bellroy backpack, tentree jacket, and a The North Face Beanie might seem like overkill but if that seals the deal in hiring someone who’ll take your business to new heights, it doesn’t seem like a bad investment at all.

Deliver a unique experience with Branded Kits

Freebies and events 

While having a digital presence has gone from beneficial to crucial in the last few years, that doesn’t mean you should neglect the real world. Business events and trade shows are just as integral in spreading the word about your brand as a TikTok video or sponsored Instagram post.

You can have potential customers lining up at your stall by offering freebies and giveaways to spread the word about your start-up all over town. There’s no need to feel obligated to obtain another loan in order to finance Cotopaxi jackets and Sony speakers for your promotional giveaways. However, ensuring that the items you distribute align with your brand’s values is vital.

By opting for bamboo pens, kraft paper totes, and other eco-friendly offerings, you’re highlighting that protecting the environment is the priority for your business. Pens and totes might not sound all that exciting but you can also have event competitions to generate further buzz for your booth with the winner(s) receiving premium items such as a custom hoodie or waterproof speaker.

Be the star of every event by providing unique freebies for attendees

One more thing 

While swag is a great alternative to more popular forms of startup marketing strategies, every business is different. Any successful company will clearly identify the strengths and weaknesses of every marketing option and pick the best strategy for them. The purpose of this article is to highlight the advantages of swag and advise that every startup takes investing in swag seriously as a viable tactic to grow.

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