Promotional Marketing Ideas for College Students
College students are broke and love free stuff. The advantage to marketing to college-aged adults is that they can make your brand popular horizontally and vertically. By this I mean that college students tell other college students what is cool and where the best spots around town are. They also have parents and younger siblings that they influence. Recently I influenced my dad’s purchase of an Invisible Shield screen protector for his Iphone, despite a few negative online reviews that he read. He thought the product was great and was happy that I changed his mind. As a recent graduate myself, someone with friends still in school, and with a little brother as a freshman this year; I know which promotional products will get this demographics attention. Here are a few that might work for your company:
- Bottle Opener Key-chains – this is a no-brainer. College students love to drink. This is a great item especially for local bars and restaurants. Even if the student do not drink, the product can still be a cool key-chain. One of my favorite promotional products I received was a guitar shaped key-chain promoting the movie Get Him to The Greek.
- Ping-Pong Balls / Branded Playing Cards / Sporting Goods – college students love taking part in recreation, so why not market where your target market plays. Table tennis and beer pong are two games played all the time by college students. Get some custom pong balls made and you are covering both bases (Plus these are really cheap to produce). Playing cards are also a good substitute for this since college students love card games. Intramural sports and spring break are big college events, so promotional basketballs, footballs, and frisbees will work great on this market.
- Koozies (coozies?), Pint Glasses, Shot glasses – Again college students like to drink. Many of them just turned 21 and are in a party environment. Shot glasses will be brought out on the weekend, so you should have your brand on them. Pint glasses also work well here. Many restaurant owners may see this as expensive since they will break (and get “borrowed”) , but the number of impressions for the dollars spent give unparallelled ROI (return on investment). Coozies are also an inexpensive substitute. People were literally stealing the coveted coozies to keep their hands warm during the ACC Football Championship game in Charlotte.
- Consumables – College students love eating junk food. I went to many random events myself just because there was free food there. Using consumables such as branded chocolates or candy will bring crowds to your event and create goodwill among this crowd. That random hungry guy/gal may become one of your best customers.
- Shirts / Hats – This is a trickier item to use. College students will almost always take free clothing, but actually getting them to wear the items is key. Do not cheapen out on apparel and use a boring logo and make your apparel overly corporate. Subtly integrate your brand into the item and create an attractive design and students will wear your apparel. Using hats that are either school colors, black, or tan will get the best results. Stay away from white hats! This crowd can be messy so darker colors will work better here. Some of this demographic is just learning how to do their own laundry.
- Flash Drives – Most college students are going to be at least somewhat tech-savvy. They probably have laptops and definitely have projects and presentations. Instead of wasting your money on pens/pencils/notebooks that may never see the light of day, give them flash drives. Make sure that they are at least 2GB (gigabytes) and are durable. Caps will be lost so just use flash drives with sliders. Key-chains again will work well in this category.
These are just a few quick ideas for promotional marketing to a college crowd. All of these items can be viewed on our web-store at MarkaBull.net . If your interested in more ideas for promotional marketing to this demographic feel free to email me anytime at firstname.lastname@example.org
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