A custom as old as time when attending trade shows is to hand out free promotional products at your exhibition stand. Needless to say it becomes easy to adjust to the attitude that you have to get pens and notepads with your company branding for every trade fair you visit, but that’s where you are missing out on exciting things you can be doing with giveaways and freebies. It’s time to take a step back from something you’ve done for ever and think about how it can serve your brand in the here and now.
Because giveaway items serve two functions, especially when done right – 1) communicate you’re generous and think of the customer, which professionals appreciate, and 2) create brand awareness every time they end up in use.
What you should be thinking about is how to select the right item to promote your brand and stay in prolonged use long after your promotion at the trade show. Many trade show booths will go for the standard choices – pens, notepads and tote bags. They’re durable and perform a specific task, so they will be used often and thus broadcast your brand to their colleagues, family and friends. It is a good idea in theory, but in practice you’ll be competing for limited luggage space with many more of the same products.
You need to think about how to be useful and also stay memorable. Our suggestion is to think for the current times that we are in. Everyone interacts with computers, laptops and smartphones every single day and this where you need to head. Products that easily come to mind here include:
USB flash drives – they are small and can be transported in a pocket, and always useful to have in professional capacity. Manufacturing technology allows them to come in all shapes and designs, so there are price options across the entire spectrum. Also today flash drives have an increased storage capacity so we recommend you look into ordering drives with at least 10 GB memory. Brand it in company colors and a logo, and you’re set.
Webcam covers – today there’s an increase in distrust towards webcams and those visitors who value their privacy online and want to feel safer when using a laptop will appreciate a branded webcam cover. Again, it’s a small item to manufacture, so costs are going to be forgiving to your budget. Also easy to take home after a trade show. Branding here works on two levels. There’s the packaging of the webcam that has more space to include details about the company and services it provides, and the webcam itself has space to incorporate your logo.
USB chargers – exhibitors are still sleeping on USB chargers as a viable giveaway item, so you immediately stand out and attract visitors to your booth. Another reason to invest in this product is because it’s ubiquitous and invaluable. A trade visitor will not only come with a phone, but also a tablet or a Kindle, and charges get broken and lost all the time. To have a free backup saves additional hassle and guarantees brand exposure on the daily. Not to mention that you’d have already won the hearts of visitors.
PopSockets – you have seen these phone accessories garner momentum in recent years. To explain, if you haven’t, these are adhesive pieces that go on the back of your phone or your tablet and function as both a stand and a grip. You can comfortably watch videos without the need to hold the device and also eliminate the problem of finger prints on the screen. A product that can be modified in shape, shape and colors, it’s the perfect promotional gift for the 21st century and easy to manufacture in greater numbers.
These ideas are all good on their own, but you also need to know what items reflect your industry, company products and brand. This is what we call brand alignment and it’s a crucial step in the consideration process before you arrive at the right choice in giveaway items. Don’t be afraid to look towards competitors and investigate your own product lineup.
Never underestimate the power of a good sample. Companies that cater to end consumers like with sweets, snacks, confectionary, cosmetics and perfumes can directly package samples of their latest products and hand them out. Not only do they perform an essential purpose, but add another whole dimension to potential buyers’ experience when inquiring about your products. In this case, you convert sales leads into a direct order and that’s sometimes even more powerful.