Site Information

  • My Account
  • Gift Certificates
  • 678-235-3464

Printing & Design Tips

Using Custom Printed Tote Bags in Your Marketing Campaign

Posted by Clash Graphics on

Free Swag! The attention grabber that gets noticed at a convention is the booth handing out tote bags filled with fun and functional promotional products. But wait! Custom tote bags aren't just for the convention floor anymore.

Custom printed tote bags Atlanta Ga

Custom printed tote bags are a powerful, reusable tool for branding your business and should be included in your promotional campaign for your storefront, trade shows, public events, direct mail, giveaways, and of course, conventions.

In this article, Clash reveals the origin, varied uses, and power of implementing custom printed tote bags in branding and marketing campaigns.

Promotional Tote Bag Origin

In 1886, the advertising industry was forever changed when Jasper Meek produced the first customized tote bag for Cantwell's Shoes in Coshocton, Ohio, and sparked the entire promotional products industry.

The original idea behind the tote was to attract more customers to Cantwell's Shoes, while Meek kept his printing press running during the slow season by printing these tote bags.

Custom Printed Tote Bag Uses

While handing your custom totes out from behind your booth at the trade show may seem like their only use, it only takes a bit of creativity to turn basic totes into a branding powerhouse.

Tote bags custom printed marketing campaign Atlanta Georgia

Take a look at the following innovative applications for your branded tote bags:

Guerrilla Marketing - This advertising approach uses inexpensive and unconventional marketing strategies intended to capture attention and produce results. In this case, fill your totes with swag, coupons, and flyers, grab a megaphone, and find a crowd of people.

As soon as you bellow the word "FREE" through the megaphone, people will take notice and make their way to you. If your impromptu presentation is interesting enough, you may even entice people to film, post and share your popup branding event online and to social media.

Direct Mail - Instead of a simple flyer, why not include a branded tote bag with the direct mail piece. Functional and clever promotional products added to a direct mail campaign have the potential to increase response percentages significantly.

Donation - Find a reputable charitable organization or school in your neighborhood, and support their food or clothing drive with your totes. When the bags are handed out, your name gets distributed with them, and any media attention is an added boost.

Another way to support and raise money for the cause is to fill a bag or two with gift items to raffle off in a fundraising drive, in which case is a win-win scenario.

Watch this video to see custom printed tote bags ready for donation.

Custom Print on Your Totes

The message on tote bags can be customized to meet the needs of practically any business. Your goal is to be creative and add value so the tote bag gets used and attracts attention. Take inspiration from the following examples:

Lawyers Office - Instead of just using the logo and name of the law firm, print instructions on how to handle being pulled over by the police and what to do if there's trouble.

  • Pull over safely and as far out of traffic as possible
  • Turn the engine and radio off
  • Turn on the cabin lights (when dark)
  • Roll the window all the way down
  • Keep your hands in plain sight
  • Be respectful and let the officer speak
  • Politely respond when necessary
  • Never argue with a police officer
  • Hand over requested documentation
  • If you receive a ticket, sign it
  • If you believe there was a mistake, fight it in court

Restaurant - Give your customers a free canvas tote bag with a simple signature recipe and ingredient list printed on the bag, like “How to make your own Caprese Salad”.

You will need the following:

  • Fresh Tomatoes
  • Fresh Mozzarella Cheese
  • Fresh Basil
  • Olive Oil
  • Balsamic Vinegar

1 - Slice the tomatoes and mozzarella in 1/4 inch thick slices.
2 - Alternate layers of tomatoes, mozzarella, and basil leaves.
3 - Drizzle with olive oil and balsamic vinegar.

Custom printed tote bag marketing campaign Atlanta Ga

Vacation Products Company - Deliver the products in a tote with a helpful beach checklist printed right on the tote bag.

  • Sunscreen
  • Beach Towell
  • Sandals
  • Beach Umbrella
  • Cold Drinks

Hair Salon - Give a custom canvas tote bag to your clients with a "salon checklist" printed on the side.

  • Magazines
  • Phone
  • Charger
  • Towel
  • Snacks
  • Drinks

Each of the above examples illustrate clever ways to produce a functional tote that is unique, ensuring its use and value.

Promotional Product Statistics

The value of promotional material is measured by many standards, according to Promotional Products Association International, the top three reasons people keep promotional items are when they are:

"functional" and

If you are successful with your tote bag, remember that repeat brand exposure occurs as 81% of recipients will keep promotional items for more than 1 year, with 18% of them keeping the items for more than 11 years!

Promotional Canvas Tote Bags and Your Marketing Strategy

Tote bags are a potent marketing tool for branding and brand recognition. Dating back campaigns to late 1800s, they've since been used in marketing and events across the world displaying brand’s logos, business names, mottos, and clever messaging.

Regardless of your business profile, high-quality printed canvas tote bags can be designed to fit your company’s or campaign's message. They can be used with direct mail, as donations, giveaways, and even as reminders of what can go in them.

The ultimate goal of marketing with tote bags is for people carry your tote at events or in public, which captures exposure and visibility for your brand. The users are essentially walking advertisements that spread the word and bring value to your company or product.

Printed tote bag Atlanta Ga


Clash Graphics Print Shop Atlanta Flyer Printing

2140 Peachtree Rd NW #301 AtlantaGA 30309
(678) 235-3464

7 Steps to Running Facebook Ads

With over 2 billion active users, Facebook tracks every action, reads every post, and even follows what you do on 3rd party sites. With this volume of data and resources, it has become one of the top social media platforms for advertising worldwide. This platform is a gateway to efficiently reaching your target customer and attracting [...]

Read More »

What is a Marketing Funnel

When implemented correctly, a marketing funnel can increase sales and revenue for your business. Also referred to as a sales or conversion funnel, a marketing funnel is defined as: "The process and experience from being introduced to your company up until eventually doing business with your company." Marketing funnels are used by businesses across all sectors regardless [...]

Read More »

Branded Promo Materials and Give-Aways to Promote Repeat Business

Custom promotional items are an easy and effective way to market and brand your company. They can also be an effective delivery system for promotions, create repeat business, and potentially increase your customer lifetime value (CLV).Branding is by definition “The creation of a name, symbol, logo, or design which identifies and differentiates one product from [...]

Read More »

Screen Printing, Heat Transfer and Direct to Garment for Custom T Shirts

Whether you’ve been tasked with ordering custom printed t shirts for an organization, upcoming event, or you are starting your own t shirt line, this article will help you make an informed decision and eliminate potential mistakes and expense. Depending on the quality and number of shirts required, heat transfers or “heat applied film” can be [...]

Read More »

Graphic Designer Salary, Software and Portfolio Tips

With the explosion of digital devices, industries and businesses are relying heavily on the Internet to market and promote themselves. To remain relevant, both companies and individuals need to produce compelling content consistently. This movement has created demand and vast opportunities for graphic designers. Creatives with design ability are being hired for in-house positions, as contractors, [...]

Read More »

3 Best 2018 Super Bowl Commercial Ads

When I say the words, Super Bowl, what probably comes to mind is a momentous football battle and equally entertaining night of commercials. After 52 championship games, it is not only the competitive football, but also the entertaining commercials that viewers across the nation continue to be excited to watch. From a branding and marketing perspective, [...]

Read More »

How to Start a Business in 7 Steps

Small businesses are part of an overwhelming majority of all combined businesses in the United States. In fact, there are nearly 30 million small businesses that make up well over 99% of all businesses in the U.S. Becoming an entrepreneur and designing a flexible career path doesn’t require a college degree, decades of management experience, or [...]

Read More »

Printing Essentials for Promoting Your Band and Music

Competition in the music industry is fierce. With so many online platforms to get songs out to the public, there has been a flood of aspiring musicians and bands releasing music haphazardly. Many believe that releasing a good song is all they need to do to be “discovered”, only to find that without a team, fan [...]

Read More »

Printed Materials for Your Clothing Store or Boutique

The opportunity to connect with your customer, showcase product, and create an in-store experience relies on a combination of digital tools and printed materials.After investing in marketing and attracting customers to your store, now is your opportunity to sell products by using visual tools to showcase how you products will enhance their look and improve [...]

Read More »