reusable eco cup

Top 5 Eco-Friendly Corporate Gifts For 2021

Seeking an easy way to promote sustainability and impress your customers? The right eco-friendly corporate gift can speak volumes about your business, and best of all, it works in a very receiver-friendly (and planet-friendly) way.

The popularity of sustainable and environmentally friendly gifts has risen immensely over the last couple of years, with many businesses opting to steer clear of items that only end up adding to landfill and aren't unable to be recycled. For the corporate landscape, it's all about practicing what you preach - good corporate gifting means reinforcing your brand image while creating lasting a connection with your customers or employees, and what better way to do that than with eco-friendly branded giftware!

Not sure where to begin? We've put together this handy list of the top 6 eco-friendly corporate gifts for 2021 to inspire you!      

1. Reusable Keep Cups

Double-walled stainless steel or glass reusable cups or flasks are currently a big hit in the corporate gifting market. Why? Because they are a universal gift that is always useful in everyday life that can easily be branded with the company logo.

Reusable cups are widely accepted at coffee shops and cafes around New Zealand and the go-to for a hot drink on the go, meaning your cups could be out and about on a daily basis making their way to and from work, around the shopping mall, sitting on the desk at work, on the sidelines at the kid's soccer game on Saturdays and many more places – get the picture? What does this mean for your brand? Ongoing brand exposure, that's what! 

The key to achieving the best benefits from a reusable cup is all in choosing the right product; first of all, it needs to be good looking, trendy if possible - something that makes people want to choose to use your product over the old one they have sitting in the cupboard.

Secondly, don't make the mistake of over branding the cup – "loud" or excessive branding can deter people from wanting to use the cup in the public arena. Keep it tasteful, but still, send a clear message. You also don't want to make a fantastic looking cup with beautiful designs, but your logo gets lost in the busyness of it all.

2. Reusable Tote Bags

Any kind of useful carry bag made from natural fibres (cotton, linen etc.) is probably always going to make the list of the best eco-friendly corporate gifts for the foreseeable future. Much like the keep cups above, this underlying popularity is due to the fact that bags are just so functional.

The demise of plastic bags has seen a massive increase in the use of branded reusable bags. Decent size tote bags are the most popular choice for businesses due to the likelihood of increased exposure from repeated use.

Good-sized sturdy tote bags are now a must-have at the supermarket, and well, pretty much everywhere, covering a wide range of uses throughout everyday life. They are great for a trip to the beach, a staple for visiting the shops, perfect for product packaging, handy when travelling, and even great for the kids when they have to take extras to school and back. The real-world applications are endless.

The key to a good reusable bag is that it needs to stand the test of time. This is one of those times where quality definitely counts; you don't want the bag to tear or break before it has had a chance to work its mobile marketing magic. You also want the bag to remain looking good for all long as possible as this will prolong further use.

3. Reusable Food Wrap/Pouches

Reducing and eliminating plastic products is one of the biggest goals of the twenty-first century. Plastic is one of the most significant contributors to pollution on our planet, killing and injuring countless animals and sea life on a daily basis as well as clogging up waterways and landfill waste. One of the trickiest plastics to replace has always been the soft plastics used to wrap food and keep it fresh while on the go. Reusable food wrap or pouches are an easy solution to this problem in many instances. 

Becoming more widely available and in a variety of forms, reusable food wrap protects sandwiches, buns, rolls, slices, fruit, and other food items eliminating the need for single-use plastic food wrap. Reusable food wrap products meet the requirements of waste-free lunches in schools and provide an everyday solution for work lunches and snacks on the go.

The key to maximising the benefits of branded reusable food pouches is making them attractive to the intended target market. You won't necessarily see much benefit from marketing your food wrap products for children if you are selling tyres, for example. Ensure the product's design and style are in line with your company goals for best results.

4. Novelty Gifts

Everyone loves a good laugh, and bringing a smile to your customers or employee's faces will generate that 'feel good' association with your brand. However, even though corporate novelty gifts are always a winner and will likely leave a lasting impression - keeping this kind of giftware eco-friendly can be a bit more of a challenge.

Always keep an eye on what the product is manufactured from, where it is made and its intended lifespan, and also whether it is recyclable at the end of its useful life. Popular choices for novelty gifts include stress balls or fidget toys, miniature toys associated with your brand such as a hammer (if you were a builder etc.), keyrings, tech gadgets, personal care items, beauty products, kitchen and laundry items, confectionery and many more.

One way to ensure going down the novelty gift road is going to be a success is to combine light-heartedness with everyday practicality. Something like this charming little Solar Power Phone Charger ticks the boxes offering a fun and memorable product that is still useful in its own right. With the right branding, you could find this front and centre on any desk in the workplace, or around the home.

5. Hand Sanitiser

One can't get far these days without the need for hand sanitiser. This little utilised product was catapulted to stardom during the 2020 arrival of the worldwide COVID pandemic and has now become the go-to promo product for many businesses.

Pretty much a staple in everyone's pocket, handbag, laptop case, school bag, backpack, desk drawer, and car you will find these little bottles of disinfecting goodness just about anywhere. The hand sanitiser of today comes in all shapes and sizes, making it perfect for all kinds of business branding choices.

From an eco-friendly perspective, aside from the actual contents, it is important to keep in mind the product packaging on this one. Unfortunately, most sanitisers are packaged in various forms of plastic. It is possible to find products made from recycled materials, and to make sure your packaging is recyclable at the end of its useful life if you shop around a bit.

If you need more help deciding on the best eco-friendly corporate gift, get in touch with the branded merchandise and corporate gifting specialists at Withers & Co today.