Promotional Products for Trade Shows – Do Promo Items & Giveaways Work?

You have spent time planning your upcoming trade show – from the design of the display to the staff you are sending – but do not overlook your promotional giveaway!  These products are commonly used, but often poorly executed, giving them a bad rap.  The truth is that they do work!  A study done by Exhibit Survey, Inc., found that companies using promotional products can have an advantage over other exhibitors for customer attention.  In the study, an exhibitor sent invitations to nearly 5,000 registrants along with zero to three gifts – before, at, and after the show.  The response was greatly higher for those who received a gift before and at the show than those who just received an invitation.

The idea of a promotional item is to attract people to your display, to generate interest, and to provoke questions.  The key is to put as much thought into your promotional products as you do your booth design and staff.  There are thousands of different items that can be branded with your logo, but consider the following:

  1. If you have a theme for the show make sure your giveaways match it.  For example, if you have a baseball theme, send your prospects home with a baseball imprinted with your logo.  This will make a long lasting impression on attendees.
  2. Promote your giveaway before the event with a teaser about the product or state that the “first 100 people to stop by our booth with get…”  This builds traffic for your booth before the show even opens!
  3. Don’t put all your eggs in one basket – or more appropriately, all your giveaways on the table.  When attendees approach your booth, strike up a conversation before giving them the item.  This way they are walking away with not only the gift, but a message and information about your company.
  4. Consider different levels of gifts.  You can have some higher end gifts that you pull out for your top-level prospects, but also some less expensive giveaways for lower-level prospects or attendees.

If you spend time selecting the right promotional product for your brand and image, and you distribute it in a smart manner, your promotional product will be a powerful tool for increased business!