Physical Branding is Still Necessary for Small Businesses

With more than 28 million small businesses in the US alone, one must wonder, how they can stand out from the rest. It’s a dog eat dog world out there today, and with more than half a million new businesses being established each month, being successful is not as easy as it may have been even ten years ago. As small businesses launch various advertising and marketing campaigns to target consumers, one thing remains evident…you’ve only got one shot to prove yourself.

LinkedIn physical branding
photo credit: Sheilla Scarborough

Building a Brand

Running a business is all about building a brand. The fact of the matter is, that no matter how great your products or services might be, if no one knows they exist, the chances of you making it are slim to none. Case in point; if you were given the choice of drinking Tropicana orange juice and a generic store brand, which would you choose? Chances are you’re going to choose the brand you’re familiar with.

The generic brand could have tasted a lot better than the Tropicana brand; however, since you’ve never heard of it, you’re not going to want to waste your time trying it. Thus the reason for building you brand. It’s how your target audience identifies with you…. It’s how you make a living.

Marketing in a Digital World

Many small business owners have focused their efforts on marketing through digital platforms. Websites, social media pages, email, etc are all forms of marketing that can greatly improve your company’s brand. While these digital platforms are all very affordable and prove to be a great return of investment, you can’t stop the buck here.

Physical Branding Still Matters

If you’ve been to any type of trade show, health fair, or business convention, you’ve likely cashed in on some of the cool memorabilia they had to offer. You grab pens, calendars, calculators, custom stickers, custom t-shirts, and whatever else you could get your hands on… and who could blame you? They certainly come in handy. But what you may not realize at the time is that as long as you have those items, you’ll never forget the company that gave it to you.

Apple swag bags
photo credit: Alison

Physical branding in the form of promotional products and marketing materials are vital to your business for various reasons:

1. Extended Brand Exposure

Website addresses are easy to forget, commercials can easily be forgotten, but promotional products and other forms of marketing materials are a lot more difficult to miss. As stated above, every time they use the product, they’re reminded of the company that provided it to them.

2. Valuable

The right physical branding materials will prove valuable to your target audience. While a flyer or postcard might be thrown away after one read, something like wholesale flash drives at could provide you with more value from multiple uses that yield continued brand exposure.

3. Creative

Billboards, commercials, websites, and social media pages are all great and necessary in today’s society, but EVERYBODY uses those. With physical branding materials, you can step outside of the box in creating things that are not only valuable, but that set you apart from the competition.


It goes without saying. If you want to remain relevant in this fast paced world of business, finding creative ways to stand out is important. Digital marketing is certainly very relevant today, but to assume that physical branding and marketing is obsolete would be a mistake that you might come to regret. Giving your target audience something tangible and of value can still expand your brand beyond what you may have ever imagined possible.