You have to look at your promotional bic pens as a very tiny billboard. It has to be catchy enough to make people take a second look. If it is not catchy then it will just blur when people look at it.
One of the big questions is if you want to emphasize your company logo or your company slogan. A question you have to ask yourself is, is your logo well recognizable? If it is not it might be wiser to design a slogan or create a catchy phrase to capitalize on the promotional pen itself. Bic pens come in all types of styles and offer many different types of writing feels. If your company is in a more professional type of industry you will want to consider executive promotional pens . These are pens that professionals will keep and use rather then a one time use generic pen. If your company is in more of a blue collar industry then it would be wise to use regular promotional bic pens. For the average consumer a sturdy pen is a resource that he or she will use on a daily basis.
Once you have recognized your industry and type of pen you will want to then think of the ad itself. For that promotional executive pen you will want to focus on small and slick. This will create a jewelry feel for the bic pen. If it looks and feel professional, then a professional will feel comfortable using it and making it their everyday pen. On these pens you won't have to worry too much about the design or slogan of the pen. Just make sure you company information is represented on the pen. If it is simply a nice pen then it will catch the eyes of others therefore spreading your advertising message. For a simpler, more "blue collar" pen you will want to think more about the design. Since you are not relying on the fanciness of the bic pen you will need to use a catchy message instead. Always try to be unique or funny with these pen ads. Represent your industry while still having a feel of "hey look at this pen".
For example: say you are a construction company and you want to be recognized in the hardware industry. You could display "You sell tools, We sell sweat " on the promotional pen. This is funny while still creating a sense of needing to know where the pen came from. Just remember, be creative while being smart. Never insult or be bland.
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