Sustainable corporate gifts: what are your promotional products saying about you?

Sustainable corporate gifts: what are your promotional products saying about you?

In today’s world sustainability is more than a mere buzzword. Businesses big and small are more conscious of what their carbon footprint is, of how they are impacting on the world around them, and how they can move forward in a more sustainable manner.

If your company is paying more attention to Economic and Social Governance (ESG) then you will also want to reconsider what you are using for your corporate gifts. Whether you use corporate gifts for events, employee perks or client appreciation it is a branch of marketing that should not be underestimated. After all, what are your promotional products really saying about you?

Are you sending those investors a truly sustainable corporate gift? Are you giving your employees gifts that shows just how much you value both people and planet? How can you make sure you are truly giving a sustainable gift and not becoming victim to greenwashing or the traps of fast fashion?

What should you consider when shopping for truly sustainable corporate gifts?

What is the purpose of the product you want to have personalised?

To show that your company truly cares about your environmental impact on the planet, choose an ecofriendly product that can be used every day by the recipient. After all, it is pointless spending valuable marketing money of products that end up shoved in the back of the kitchen cupboard, or worse, the dustbin! Think of the phrase “reduce, reuse, recycle” to help guide you on whether or not an item is an appropriate corporate gift in the modern world.

What materials is the corporate gift made from?

Is it made from materials that are endlessly recyclable or can it only be recycled once or twice? Are there hidden nasties lurking in the product you are buying for your next event? As you may know, we are the UK’s only lead free insulated bottle brand (you read that right – almost all insulated water bottles in the world still contain toxic lead! Yuck, right?) so talking about hidden nasties is nothing new for us. Do your research, ask questions.

Who made your corporate gift?

Being a reusable product made from planet friendly materials is still not enough to be truly sustainable. Who made that branded merchandise? How are they treated? Are they paid fairly? Do they have the right to form unions? These are all important things to consider when searching for a truly sustainable corporate gift. Even in our area of expertise, not all insulated water bottles are created equally. Choosing ethically made corporate gifts shows that your company cares about people and the planet.

What certifications and independent audits are available to show ethical and responsible manufacturing of the product?

This is a key part of transparency and accountability. For instance, here at Ohelo we hold a 4-pillar SMETA report and a BSCI audit showing that we ethically make all of our products. We happily share these audits with our corporate clients so they can be certain their ESG requirements are being taken care of. Furthermore, we hold a range of certifications (ISO 9001, ISO 14001, ISO 45001, ISCC Plus) to show our social and environmental responsibility. Always check to see what independent audits and certification there is on an ecofriendly promotional product before choosing it as part of your marketing campaign.

Is the price too good to be true?

This is a big one. Setting realistic expectations of what price you can expect to pay for truly sustainable branded merchandise. For example, there are many times we have had multi-national companies who publicly say all the right things about being sustainable, enquire about branded merchandise that NEEDS to be truly sustainable and ethically made, but then are looking for bespoke branded merchandise for a cost lower than what we can manufacture and ship at. It is not realistic and sadly shows a disjoin from those companies marketing and sustainability teams. A company that pays it workers fairly, that manufactures in an ethical way, that uses safer materials for both people and planet will never offer you cheaper merchandise than a company who is making in a less ethical way, not paying staff fairly, using cheaper materials and making in a more “fast fashion” manner. There are many options out there when it comes to branded water bottles – but we say it again, not all bottles are created equally. There is a reason why some will be offered to you at prices lower than we can even land our own products in the country – its down to corners being cut, inferior quality and poor treatment of workforce.

Eco-friendly products are a great direction to take your corporate merchandise. They show you value people and planet. They can be used to start discussions about your company values – sharing why you have opted with a particular piece of merchandise can be a powerful thing to do. Our clients will often share why they have worked with Ohelo for their promotional merchandise, highlighting ethical manufacturing practices, safer materials use and the fact that their bottles are already giving back to charities.

Are you looking for bespoke branded bottles for your next marketing campaign? Do you need some custom water bottles for an upcoming event that need to be truly sustainable and ethically made? Do you want to show your employees and/or clients that you truly value both people and planet and are taking your commitments to a more sustainable future seriously?

There are many reasons why companies are choosing Ohelo for their corporate gifts:
• All our products are ethically made – verified by independent audits that we are happy to share with you and your team.
• We are the UK’s only LEAD free insulated bottle brand – safer for people and planet.
• Our premium quality bottles and travel cups are all DISHWASHER SAFE, unlike most on the market.
• Laser engraved branding gives a premium finish that is dishwasher safe and won't fade or peel.
• We use 25% thicker steel than others to make our bottles stronger and more durable.
• 5% of all profits go to charity - we are proud to support Surfers Against Sewage in their fight against plastic pollution.

For the perfect sustainable corporate gift look no further than Ohelo branded bottles and travel mugs. For corporate gifts that look good AND do good. Send us an email today at and our team will help you get bespoke merchandise that will make you stand out from the crowd for all the right reasons.

 similar posts:

1. Corporate Branding Series: Ohelo x WWF
2. Corporate Branding Series: Ohelo x Royal Opera House
3. Corporate Branding Series: Ohelo x Ruffer
4. How to go green & select sustainable branded merchandise for your company

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