“How can I get my content to be seen by millions of people? How can I go viral?”

Viral marketing is the dream of many marketers. Memes, gifs, cute videos of mischievous cats and laughing babies, the internet sees it all. But viral marketing happens offline, too. In fact, the best brand-building buzz can happen completely offline.


For better or worse, people will be sharing their thoughts and experiences about your brand. They will rate your food quality, your customer service, your abilities, your product selection –anything that is noteworthy. When you focus on providing a quality product or service for your customers, you are creating something worth talking about.

People rely on people they trust, friends, family, co-workers, to make decisions about where and what to purchase. Think about it. If your mom says “Their chicken soup was so good, it reminded me of grandma’s recipe,” you will feel compelled to at least try the chicken soup. If you want people to talk about your company, product or service, you have to give them something to talk about.


Everyone has that inner desire to make it to the big time, get lucky and win the lottery, or find some other path to happiness and success. It’s all part of the American dream. Feed off these emotions to get people to participate in your contest or promotion.

You’ve seen signs saying “Register here for a new car!” or “Enter to win an all-inclusive Caribbean getaway!” Many people will stop to drop their name in the box for a chance to win. Consider hosting your own contest for big ticket items that everyone wants, such as tablets, laptops, TVs and other tech and electronics. Create a prize package that includes promotional items recipients can use, like tablet holders, car chargers and other tech accessories imprinted with your logo.

Instead of a contest, maybe you want to draw in customers with an amazing deal. Increase the hype with an exclusive gift for a limited number of people. The first people in your doors receive the prize and the discount, while the late-comers get only the discount. This tactic tends to be popular around major shopping days like Black Friday and the holidays, but it can be used year round.

Keep your target audience in mind and develop prizes or contests around their wants, needs and interests. Remember, everyone just wants a chance.


Sometimes the smallest or most mundane items can be the best way to spread brand awareness. Despite living in a world full of technology, we rely on simple tools like pens daily. Pens are a cost-effective item you can give away for any event or occasion and multiply brand impressions. When you sign a check or a receipt at a store and the cashier hands you a pen with their business info imprinted on it, you may end up leaving with that very pen. Some time passes, and a friend asks to borrow a pen. You dig through your pockets or purse and find the one you snagged. And the cycle continues.

There are literally thousands of options for giveaway items, from pens to water bottlest-shirts, magnets, notebooks and more. If a person receives a promotional product they don’t want or cannot use, 63% of U.S. consumers will pass it on to someone else. This increases the likelihood that your gift or giveaway will leave an impression with someone.

Make your brand go viral with word-of-mouth marketing, contests or exclusive promotions and free stuff. If you’re looking for promotional items to get your audience talking, let Staples Promotional Products help you find the products you’re looking for. Choose from thousands of styles, colors, shapes and sizes to ensure that your brand has many opportunities to make an impression.