Companies Use Promotional Items To Attract Graduates

As hiring is picking up in 2011, a new survey from ASI shows (Advertising Specialty Institute) that an increasing number of companies are using promotional products this year to court college graduates. The exclusive study from ASI shows that 56% of human resources professionals say promotional products imprinted with a company’s name or logo convey a positive image when distributed during job fairs and other recruiting efforts.

Of those surveyed, 55% say they use promotional pens in their recruiting efforts, and 41% use logoed items like T-shirts, calendars and high-tech accessories in conjunction with hiring. This enhanced use of ad specialty items in recruiting efforts comes as companies are increasing their rate of hiring recent college graduates. After several slow years, employers are actively recruiting on campuses again, and hiring is up 19.3% for 2011 college graduates compared to the Class of 2010, according to surveys by the National Association of Colleges and Employers, a research group.

When it comes to attracting top grads, unusual and useful branded items are essential to drive word-of-mouth conversation and branding exposure, said Jessica Miller-Merrell, CEO of Xceptional HR, a human resource consulting firm. “Companies need to bring their A game to job fairs, conferences and other events where they recruit and engage candidates,” said Miller-Merrell. “Items need to be original, interesting and applicable to the audience. Interactive giveaways are one of the most effective tools, as well as interesting and unusual pins and items that appeal to the audience.”

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