Expected Promotional USB Flash Drive Trends In 2012

Well 2011 has certainly been a busy year in the promotional USB flash drive market. The popularity of the flash drive as a promotional give-away was reinforced not only by the sheer number of companies that have bought them but by a solid piece of market research undertake by the BPMA (British Promotional Merchandising Association).

Of all the people surveyed by the BPMA nearly half (45%) said they would most like to receive a USB stick in preference to any other promotional product. Usefulness was cited as the primary reason for wanting a USB stick and after a Promotional Mug USB memory sticks were kept the longest.

Having proven their “promotional pedigree” over the past few years in 2012 the expected trends for this popular produce are likely to be:

  1. Continued increase in the number of units sold – it seems people, businesses and schools just can’t get enough of USB Flash Drives.
  2. Continued cannibalisation of the CD/DVD market – these old storage products are now considered “dated” and simply don’t convey the right image as a medium for handing out data.
  3. The Twister or “Swivel” model as it is sometimes referred to is predicted to top seller again. It’s held this position

    Promotional USB Sticks

    for a number of years now because it’s a small, capless and colourful product that takes print well.

  4. Memory will get cheaper and the default promotional USB drive given away by the end of 2012 will have at least 4GB of storage compared to the typical 1GB drive that is given away now.
  5. USB 3.0 (also dubbed SuperSpeed USB) will start to gain momentum during 2012. Intel’s entry into the market in early 2012 will mean that most PC’s from the summer of 2012 will ship with USB 3.0 on-board. This will drive demand fore USB 3.0 peripherals and storage products.
  6. Custom (fully bespoke) USB flash drives will grow in popularity as the price differential between them and a “standard factory” design reduces.
  7. More customers will take advantage of pre-loading the USB flash drives with their own content (sales brochures, media files, web links etc.)  before the USB sticks are handed out.

Unfortunately we also expect to see more fraud and more sales of “masked” and sub-standard USB flash drives. The growth in the market is encouraging more companies to try and cut corners and buy from sites like Alibaba or direct from China. This is fine if you have the time to undertake appropriate checks and you’re confident you have a way of getting your money back should things go wrong otherwise it can be very risky. Don’t become a fraud statistic in 2012.

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