trade show

Regardless of what industry you’re involved in or whether you’re an exhibitor or an attendee, trade shows can be very overwhelming. With all of the different colorful, flashy booths and fun giveaway items, it takes a lot to stand out from the crowd.  In fact, the overabundance of promotional products at trade shows is encouraging attendees to be more selective with the items they decide to take home with them. If the promo items you are giving people are not useful in some way, they are much more likely to be thrown away or simply declined altogether. Especially with today’s trending focus on minimizing our heavily materialistic world, many people will only accept giveaways with a utilitarian purpose. In this article, we cover tips on how efficiently tailored promotional giveaways can make all the difference in increasing consumer engagement.

According to a study done by the Promotional Products Association International (PPAI),
the top-selling promotional product categories for 2017 were:

Wearables (apparel, accessories)
Writing Utensils
Time (clocks, desk calendars)
Desk (USB drives, office supplies)
Health (Hand sanitizer, lip balm, etc.)

Travel Cup Tumbler

The unique benefit that tradeshow giveaways offer is their ability to resonate with clients and prospects. While fun, novelty promotional items are always great for generating brand interest, practical and useful products can present more value to visitors, which in turn can create greater, more long-term impact. Recipients appreciate the gesture to provide them with something they can actually use in their daily routines. These useful giveaways encourage a positive and engaging experience with your brand, and will increase your company’s return of interest.

Regardless of your company’s marketing budget, it is important to be conscious of the costs associated with promotional items including cost per item, taxes, shipping and storage. While expensive and flashy items might garner a lot of attention, you’ll probably get more bang for your buck if you find less expensive alternatives that can pack the same punch. There is a plethora of affordable giveaway options that are as useful as they are impressive. Some of the most sought-after giveaways at tradeshows include drinkwareUSB car chargershand sanitizers, keychain tools like flashlights and bottle openers, and beverage sleeves. It’s simple: when items have a handy purpose, people tend to hang on to them longer.

Remember that no matter how cool your giveaway item is, you will lose significant brand exposure if it cannot be immediately linked back to your brand. For this reason alone, it is absolutely crucial to include your company logo and some form of contact information on your giveaways. The entire purpose of promotional marketing is to increase brand exposure, so be sure to choose eye-popping, quality printed products to represent your company. High-performing trade show giveaways clearly communicate brand strategies, messaging, and capabilities to attendees. When considering the effectiveness of various promotional products, it is important that said products and messaging align with your brand persona, corporate image and campaign theme.

After researching and producing the perfect promotional items to represent your brand, don’t just give them away to every passerby! Be mindful of who you’re handing your valuable freebies to, and tailor your gift to them. Is the person already a valued customer? If not, how likely are they to become one? You may decide to give new prospects something different than the clients you already work with. You may also decide to give higher potential clients fancier items than the others. Giving away product samples to prospects has proven to be one of the most effective ways to flaunt different product benefits and attract qualified attendees to trade show booths. Attendees are more receptive to sales pitches and consultations when they are able to actually sample the product on the sales floor. Giving attendees the opportunity to test products first-hand before buying allows for better informed and more confident purchasing decisions.

Prize Wheel

You can even increase audience enthusiasm and engagement with activities for winning special giveaways. You can identify actions to earn gifts like scanning a badge or exchanging a business card, which will also help you generate customer leads to follow up with. Other gift-winning activity options could be listening to a presentation, playing a trivia game or even spinning a prize wheel.

Wide such a wide array of different promotional products, there are a number of different tailored themes companies can hone in on. From useful tech-savvy items like smart phone wallets and phone grip/stands, to healthcare items like lip balm and hand sanitizer, and even to eco-conscious products like reusable bags and drinkware made with recycled materials, there are plenty of trending markets to tap into when deciding the right promotional giveaways to suit your company.

With the right product and message, trade show giveaways can bring companies amazing returns; both in-booth, as well as after the show with generated lead followups, and long-term engagement strategies with your brand. As with any business, the first step is getting people in the door.

So what are you waiting for?
Contact today for any assistance with product choices, virtual proofs, or order quotes.

Thank you for reading!