It’s safe to say we are currently living in the height of the smartphone age. With over ¾ of Americans now owning a smartphone they have become a significant part of our lives, to say the least. In fact, Americans now spend on average over 4 hours a day looking at their phones. While millennials certainly spend the most time on their devices, 55-64 year-olds are seeing the fastest growing year-over-year usage. This trend spans all generations in the US.
So what does this mean for the promotional products industry? According to PPAI promotional products are still the least avoided and best-received form of advertising. But how can we sell in support of this increasingly digital world and give customers the products they desire? This has led to a boom in the technology category of promotional products.
USB’s vs. Phone Accessories
USB drives are perceived as one of the most useful categories of promo product, and usefulness is the most desired trait in a product . They are still the #1 category of technology product and growing fast. But USB drives still don’t directly capitalize on the smartphone market.
Instead, that demand is being filled through the ever-growing categories of power banks, wireless accessories, smartphone cases and other accessories directly related to mobile devices. This area of rapid growth is all the buzz in the promo. There are new options popping up every day, so let’s look at how to choose the right one.
Rise of Wireless Audio
Last year Apple made the controversial move to remove the headphone jack from their newest iPhone®. This is not only an Apple move anymore. Just this month Google released the Pixel® 2 with no headphone jack. Rumors were flying that Samsung would do the same with its Galaxy® phones. While they didn’t make the move in 2017, there is much speculation they will do so in 2018. It will likely be the case that all leading phones in 2018 will have nowhere to plug in earbuds.
This removal of headphone jacks has led to an increased demand for wireless audio. Wireless speakers have been growing for a few years. Big brands like the Jam® brand are more reliable and trusted than the off-brand versions, but a generic wireless speaker will allow more units per dollar. Or if you really want the latest and greatest, wireless earbuds are the next big thing in the audio world. Here again, you have a choice of premium brands or budget-friendly generics.
Smartphone Accessories Thrive – But Which Phone?
Giving away a promo that can be used directly on a consumer’s phone is a sure way to have your brand seen every day. If a phone case with your name is snapped on to protect their device, you can be sure they will look multiple times a day. But which case? And which phone? These cases are not universal by any means. Every year new sizes and shapes are released. Phone cases should be purchased in line with the latest phone launch. These promos should be repeated not with the same case the next year, but with the upgraded phone model’s new form factor. If your customer has grown to love their case, you can be sure they will love the upgrade you give them to match their shiny new device next year.
There are also options that appeal to any smartphone owner. Of course, many screen cleaners and phone stands are useful for all shapes of smartphones. More recent options like a Mobigrip® Cellular Leash or Self Snap Photo Remote can add additional functionality to most smartphones. Or an accessory like the Modern USB Wall Adapter with Phone Holder can make your home more functional for smartphone convenience.
The assortment of smartphone compatible promotions continues to grow every quarter. And smartphone adoption is still on the rise. We can be sure these products will continue to see more and more adoption in the industry, and selling to the smartphone will be a smarter move than ever before to grow your business.