Givin’ it up: looking for giveaways for your next trade show?

Promotional giveaways are a proven way to attract attention to your exhibit booth and your product or service. But while the right giveaway can yield great results, a lame one can send the wrong message, waste your money, and fail to capture the attention you deserve. Here’s a list of the best and the worst items a company can choose as promotional giveaways.

Looking for giveaways for your next trade show?

The Best

Paper pad. Used on a daily basis, relatively inexpensive, and highly visible, the simple pad of paper makes your company’s name a daily part of the office environment. These pads are great at keeping your firm on the desk of the decision-maker. Just make sure that your company name is not so big as to make the paper unusable.

Custom sticky note pad. Made famous by the 3M company, but who knows that? Now if the name had been on every yellow square, you know it would be on the lips of every executive in a European-cut jacket. Placing your company’s name or logo on a custom-made pad of notepaper with a sticky backing is a good way of getting your name Out there. Everybody uses them, and you can never have enough.

Stress ball. No, not toys. Stress balls. No, not shaped like furniture or figures or stars or globes. Like spheres. Like round balls. Executives love these squishy giveaways, and research suggests that those that stay around the office are the plain, solid-colored ones with understated logos. Goofy animal characters and oh-so-cutesy hearts with bulbous eyes end up at home in Junior’s toy box next to the tiny stuffed lion from last year’s show.

Computer-top calendar. One of the best giveaway items is the small, flip-page calendar that either has Velcro or a double-sided sticky clip that attaches directly to the top of a computer screen. Handy, unobtrusive, functional, and low-cost, the calendar will be used yearlong, reminding clients of your existence on a daily basis.

Mouse pad. The best of the best, the computer mouse pad with custom logo is the item most likely to be used by corporate decision-makers in the office on a daily basis. Most of their planning takes place on or near the computer, and this item is a sure winner for keeping your company name close at hand with the powers that hire and rehire.

And Now, the Worst

Cup cozy. This condensation-foiling wraparound is cute and inexpensive, but one of the worst items to bank your firm’s name and reputation on. Primarily, these foam coolers are used to keep beers or other alcoholic beverages cold, and as such are not of much use in a corporate workplace. The majority of them end up in homes or dorm rooms, away from the decision-makers you want to reach.

Stuffed animal. Here’s an item that is at once expensive and forgettable. These cuddly, bug-eyed dust collectors are almost always taken home–not to the office–where they are immediately given to Junior. The same goes for any toy-esque item. Yourgiveaway should be of use to the recipient, and that recipient should always be a decision-maker.

Pocket-sized letter opener. Small and compact, utilitarian in function, they seem like a great choice. But consider this: Does your decision-maker open her own mall, or will this item be used primarily by her assistant–not on your decision-maker’s desk when she’s doing the hiring for her next project?

Coffee mug. Again, at first glance, these appear to fit the criteria: attractive, utilitarian, and desktop friendly. However, mugs with another company’s logo are not always PC in some corporate arenas. Not only that, but they tend to run on the more expensive side of the ledger, and have been so “done to death” many of them now fill the kitchen cupboards of homes across America awaiting the next yard sale.

Magnet. The worst of the worst. These end up attaching pizza coupons to refrigerator doors. Magnets make great giveawayitems when you want to say, “I just don’t care anymore.”


Here are a few more decent giveaway items, but remember that the success of these items will depend a great deal on the type of client you are targeting. Improper marketing of these items could have you going from show to show toting luggage loaded with lackluster, logo-laden loot.

Rounding out this collection of suggestions are the small, folding travel clock (your name and logo are the first thing that greet clients’ bleary eyes each morning of every business trip), the Swiss Army knife (not a near-miss knockoff, but the real thing! Yes, the client can tell the difference), and even key chains. But the key chains must be good looking; preferably with a clear, white-light option, not some rinky-dink copy of your logo pasted to an alien-red light bulb that is of no use unless you’ve lost your car in a photo darkroom.

One last bit of advice: Man the station. Don’t just have a tub of pens sitting on a table near the aisle way. People won’t even look your way, let alone stop. They’ll scoop up your free stuff and hit the next booth. Instead, have someone holding the item and handing it out. This will at the very least get someone to make eye contact with you. Remember, “thank you” can segue into an actual conversation.

Giveaways: Freebie favourites

1. Confectionery

Simple but very effective and an exhibition stalwart, as everyone loves a free chocolate. Sweet Temptations offers branded confectionery and its current clients include financial services firm Medex Direct, which uses its lollipop sweets, chocolate bars and chocolate fountain as a mainstay.


‘The chocolate fountain has proved an absolute show-stopper,’ explains Sweet Temptations director Colin Levene. He should know – he’s even managed to sell his products to dental clients for use on their stands in recent times.

2. Goody bags

goody bags

Not only will most people gladly accept goody bags, but they also attract attention as recipients carry them around. They can be as exclusive or mass market as you like, and the latter option doesn’t mean skipping on creativity. Julia Harris, partner at Ultimate Promotions, says: ‘One of our clients makes inflatable beds and exhibited at this year’s Ideal Home Exhibition. We created 300 gift bags for the press day containing eye-masks, ‘do not disturb’ signs and chocolates and they proved a real hit.’

3. Colour-Change products

Perhaps not the most obvious choice, but a great way to go beyond the norm. B&H Colour Change supplies clients such as Kingfisher Gift Vouchers.

Kingfisher recently ran a competition on a pre-exhibition mailer containing a colour-changing ice cream spoon to bring to the stand. They received free ice cream and if the spoon changed colour from pink to blue when placed in it, the recipient won incentive vouchers.

4. Funky info packs

Everyone needs to get their details out there, but with delegates swamped with unwieldy information, how do you stand out? One solution is the iKyp – a pocket-sized data holder featuring retractable information cards.

Recent users include The Kennel Club at last year’s Discover Dogs show.

‘We needed a device that communicated lots of information to both children and parents,’ says Kennel Club marketing manager Fiona Pearce. ‘The iKyp’s huge capacity for information provided the perfect solution.’

5. Business cards

With all and sundry dishing out their cards at shows, the challenge is to get yours noticed. One way to leave a lasting impression post-exhibition is with Mint Cards – credit card-sized containers filled with sugar-free mints – from Propaganda. Available in a variety of colours, they can be printed in up to four colours. Recent fans include consulting firm Sinclair Knight Merz, which has been using them successfully at exhibitions to drive brand awareness.

6. Clothing

Free caps, t-shirts and badges may not seem the most inspiring choice, but when a megabrand such as Microsoft puts its weight behind promotional clothing, it’s fair to say that it must work for them. Since 2001, BTC Group has produced merchandise for Microsoft’s annual TechEd conference and exhibition, which attracts 7,000 delegates. BTC decks out Microsoft’s exhibition staff as well as producing caps, pens, stationery and party items, which the supplier says form a vital part of reinforcing Microsoft’s position as show organiser.

7. Interactive information

Described as a cost-effective giveaway by supplier Propaganda, the Web Key creates an instant link to your firm’s website via the USB socket to provide post-event brand recognition. It’s available in a range of colours with a large print area for personalisation. Recent exhibition users include IT specialist Computer Services.

8. Pens

Perhaps the most dependable of giveaways, the pen may seem obvious, but it needn’t be uninspiring. The Yoropen may look odd but it is surprisingly comfortable and easy to use. It offers finger support, adjustable grip, extra visual space so you can see what you’re writing, and supplier Coles says it’s also ideal for left-handed people. Converts include London-based courier and transport company Addison Lee at shows such as Olympia’s Business Travel Show.

9. Recycled products

With environmentally friendly premiums in demand, suppliers have stepped up their efforts. CN Promotions has sourced lines from Remarkable such as mousemats made from recycled tyres (right), which CN business development manager Christine Eden says have been a huge exhibition hit. ‘We work with a lot of environmentally-minded bodies and it’s great that so many innovative recycled products have come on stream.’

10. Electricals

High perceived value means that almost everyone loves a gadget. A 64-megabyte USB memory stick keyring from the Electrical Incentive Company (EIC) costs from pounds 7 per unit and was given away by the firm to draw customers to its stand at last year’s National Incentive Show. ‘We demonstrated its abilities and handed them out with our price file and product details pre-saved on them,’ says EIC director Ray Jobz. ‘The show proved to be a great success for us.’

Creating Giveaways as a Marketing Strategy: Good or Bad?

GiveawayA lot of businesses create various marketing stratagies in order to promote their products and services. It is very important to do these marketing strategies so you can boost and promote your business without paying a lot. One of the marketing strategis that is popular nowadays is giveaways and promotions.
The prices can be anything: from a new product that will be launched to the latest service that can be availed for free when you join and win the giveaways.  This is one great strategy where you can get information of potential customers and, at the same time, develop and long term relationship with them.
If you are a small business (or any business for that matter) and want to promote your products and services without ease, doing giveaways as a marketing strategy is one of the best. And we will tell you why as you read on.

Giveways as Marketing Strategy

As we have mentioned, giveaways are very popular marketing strategies among businesses and it has never failed in promoting them, no matter how small or big. Here are some information you need to know about giveaways as marketing strategies.

What is a Giveaway?

First of all, what is a giveaway? A giveaways is a marketing promotion where establishments and businesses give away something for free—whether it is a product and service. They are used to spread the word about the business and make a name for themselves to the customers. This is also done so customers will continue to buy the product. The more people join the giveaways, the more possible customers the business will get. Giveaways come in the form of sweepstakes, contests, raffles and freebies.

How Effective is it?

Businesses invest a lot on giveaways because they know it is an easy way to attract customers and even develop a long term relationship with them.  It is a powerful and effective tool in making sales and making sure your brand is known to everyone. When you offer giveaways to your consumers, it can result into a flood of new and repeat customers who will always go back to your shop and buy more of your products and services.
The reason why giveaways almost always work is because it is on a two-fold aspect. For one thing, if those who win yoru products or services test it without them spending anything, they recognize the value of it more and will continue purchasing the product even after the giveaways end. There may even be a chance when they will get hooked on the product or service being given aways and will more often go to your shop and business to get more.
Second, becuase the product or service was give to the customer/consumer for free, there will be some sort of a psychilogical pressure to return the favor by continuing to purchase the products and services. Plus, aside from the free gift that they got, they  might be obliged to try other products and services too as a way to try it or say thank you for the free gift. We think the “Law of Reciprocity” applies here where people naturally feel obliged to return the favor as a way to say thanks.
But doing giveaways is not just about giving free gifts or holding contests just to increase your sales or develop customer service. You must think well about giveaways and what you must remember in order to have be successful in this strategy. And we are here to help you with that.

Things to Remember When Doing Giveaways

There are things you mus remember when doing giveaways so you can successful and get the sales that you need:

1. Information is key

Together with the giveaway, you should also give information regarding the giveaway and the product you plan to give.  It is not enough that you just say you have a giveaway, but do not provide all the details. There are a lot of social networking sites out there that you can use to promote your giveaways and products.
One example we can give is from Weaver Optics, an outdoor gear/sporting goods store that sells one of the best rifle scope and various guns. They held a giveaway where they gave out various gun accessories and one of them is the Weaver Grand Slam Riflescope and promoted it in their Facebook page. When people saw this, they looked for rifle scope reviews of this product and joined the giveaway after seeing its positive results.
As you can see, information is indeed key and you must give that to your customers.

2. Too Good To Be True

Don’t make your giveaways too good to be true or people will be skeptical about it. To avoid this, always explain how you can offer such a great deal and why you are offering them. Whether you are overstocked, got a great deal from your supplier, or you just want to say thank you in a meaningful way, just explain to them why the giveaways is great.

Advantages and Disadvantages


  • When doing giveaways, it can result to improve in sales or traiff of expenditure.  This is one of the best ways to attract customers into buying or getting the store’s products and services.
  • It is also a great stand-alone advertising medium because it promotes the business, brand, product, services and the giveaway itself.
  • It can be added to the media mix and social networking, creating a huge impact on both the business and the consumer.
  • It gives a positive and great overall image to the business because it means they value the customers a lot. It leads to a higher likelihood of buying the products and availing of services again and again.
  • Allows repeared exposure to the compant’s message based on the repeated promotions and the lenght of time the products are used.
  • It offers a better perception of the business or store.
  • Repeated promotions of the giveaway makes the customers remember and recall the business/store name.
  • And when you do giveaways, you provide a higher likelihood of customers recommending it to others and haveing your customer base increase more.


  • When you do more giveaways than usual, there is the possibility that customers will expect more free products and promotions consistently.
  • When the giveaways stop, customers become disappointed and unsatisfied, thus your sales may drop and not do good to your store.
  • If you don’t plan giveaway well, this can decrease your sales and you may even lose money. You must avois needless pending along with wasting of income.
  • It is very diffciult to satisfy people so it is good to pick the right products for giveaways.
  • There are products that are sometimes hard to give as freebies like for instance, customized shirts or keychains. For examplein customized shirts, it is difficult to find the right shirt that will fit for customization. For keychains, it may not be the best promotional material because they are hidden and not often seen by people. Choosing the wrong type of product that does nothing to change customer perception of your business will waste money on an unsuccessful marketing campaign.
  • Many giveaways or promotional products are given or thrown away or used just once.


All in all, giveaways as marketing strategies is great and will make your business good. Just make sure to plan it and that it won’t affect your store or business. Let our guide help you with that.

How To Do A Better Giveaway Campaign?

Giveaway is not always the good one to do the marketing job for the companies because it costs a lot of money as well as time to carry out this campaign. However, along with the expensive side of the giveaway, it also is considered the direct way to mark the brand into the mind of the customers as well as the public. But, how to performance the good giveaway campaign is not the easy one. Here in this article, I will show you some ways to do a better giveaway campaign to boost sales up to the highest level.

Take insight research about the market

The job of marketer is always understand the insight of the market so there is some argument that when you are going to carry out the giveaway campaign you will not need to take the insight research again. This is totally wrong because the giveaway campaign is considered as the launch campaign of your company. The more you do it carefully, the more you bring profits back to the company and the more you boast about your product brand name. So, taking insight study about the market is very necessary. But the question here is how to really take the insights while the situations is always time constraint? This step requires you a lot of skills. You should base on the historical data that you have collected from the researches in the past and then filter the data and choose what kind of data you  need to develop and what kind of data you need to make the new one. The things that you need to make a research should connect to the target customers of this giveaway campaign. For example, you have a new kind of cookies and that is totally new in the market. Now you want the potential customers pay their attention to this new kind of cookies. This cookies taste really good and you believe you can put the high prices on it to offer the market. So, you decide a giveaway campaign to do marketing job for this products. I am sure you are right with your decision but if you fail in the first step that is taking insight research you will give the free lunch for the public only and can bring back only a small amount of money if I do not want to say the chance of profit is so low. So, with this kind of products, what should you research? I would like to give some suggestions, the time of good tasting is the first thing you can consider. If you choose the good time for people to try the cookies, you already win 50 percent. Second, the place to performance this campaign is also very important. In the crowed street with a lot of dust and car exhaust, your giveaways campaign will fail at least 60 percent. And the next thing should considered is the customer target. With the usual marketing method, you only need to take insight research with this sector. For the cookies, the students and kindergarten is the one will consume the product the most but they do not have much money to pay for that. So, the target customers will be the parents. To collect all the information, you will have the chop to build the good giveaway marketing plan for your companies with the new line of products.

Gain the preference from the customers at the first sight

Different to the other marketing method, the giveaway campaign can succeed only if the sample products are really so good that the potential customers can love them for the first time. So, I mean, the sample product has to be very awesome. If you and your manufacture chain cannot do that, you will fail with this campaign and make this like a free lunch for all. The impression is the only thing can make the success for this kind of marketing method. In this marketing campaign, you do not need to focus too much on the appearance of the sample products, instead you need to pay attention a lot to the quality of the product. With the cookies products, the taste is the one you have to focus on. And that taste should be different to the other cookies enough for those who try it can realize and love it right the first time tasting. If you make the people want to try it one more time, you already have the ability of success at least 80 percent. Wow! It is really a good number for the marketing work. So, as I said before, the giveaway campaign – if you know to carry it out in the right way, you will definitely have the higher effect on selling product and making the product brand name known to the public. But if you do not perform in the right way, you will lose more than you can gain.

How To Apply Giveaway In The Right Way?

How To Apply Giveaway In The Right Way?

Everybody is attracted by the giveaways because it is provided completely for free. Some giveaways are offered for the preparation of launching new products to the market. Some giveaways are the thanks from the suppliers to their traditional customers. Giveaways can even be used in other situations as long as you consider it is going to be effective. With the creation, you will have a lot of thing to do with the usage of the giveaway. However, which is the most suitable one to apply the giveaways? Have you heard this statement: “There ain’t such thing as a free lunch”. This is my favorite quote from  Robert Heinlein. So does the giveaways. You have to do it for a certain purpose unless you are doing charity and want to be an angel. This is not going to happen in the real life. There is no one making the giveaways for charity, they always take advantage of the things the people do not use and then transfer it to the other people who need them. The main character of giveaways is costly and mainly for marketing purpose. So, here in this article, I will show you the specific situations that giveaways will work well for you.

Marketing for the launch of new products

The products that giveaways will definitely bring the conductor a lot of things are those which are very new in the market. The consumers usually have the preference to the familiar products and show their ignorance to the new products. So, that is one of the reasons why these kind of selling items need to be applied the giveaways campaign. For example, your company is going to launch the new kind of perfume and you know what, the expense spent in each bottle of perfume is not low so the unready attitude from the public to the product may occur because just trying can cost them a fairly large amount of money. So, the giveaways will be the best marketing method to your company with this kind of products.

Depend on the new product that will be launched, the effect of the giveaway campaign will be different. If this is the kind of product that can give the customer the real experience with the high level of emotions and feelings like a new kind of food, a new perfume with new fragrance, you will definitely can gain a big success by carrying out the giveaway marketing method. However, I do not mean to the other products, the giveaways do not work. It can have good effect on every new product that has never been in the market before. Only a point you have to keep in mind that, you have to consider carefully the probability of success of the giveaway campaign combining to the cost and expense to conduct it.

Give giveaways as a thank

To keep the customer loyal to you, you have to do a lot of things besides the good quality of the products as well as the care process after purchase. The traditional ways to say thank you to the loyal customers are discount, free consulting services, free shipping… The giveaway is also used but it is applied to just only a few companies. Why do you not think of giveaways to say thank to your loyal customers? Just give them the big surprise and they will pay more for you for the other products a lot of times. For example, if you are a magazines publisher, you can send the special edition of the year to the traditional customers as a giveaway. Some entertainment centers send the customers voucher to use the entertainment utilities for free within the limitation of valid time. If you are a fitness center, you can gift the loyal customers the gold member card for free with a lot of discount or even free services. The giveaways will affect the customers more than other discounts or something else because this seems provide the real benefit directly to the customers. Besides, the giveaways can lead them to use more products from your company.

Use giveaways method as a marketing service

If you are the organization that is known broadly by the public, you can provide the giveaways channel as a marketing service to the small companies and the start-up companies. By providing this service, you do not make your reputation lower. In fact, your company can make money from this service. Let me give you an example to easily get picture of this idea. For example if you are an education center, say Foreign language center, you can stay on behalf of another company that is wanting to make their new product – the foreign language reference kits known by the public.

There are a lot of way can do with the giveaway. Let’s think outside the box and I am sure you will bring home a lot of experience as well as assets!

Giveaway Campaign For The Upcoming Valentine 2015

Giveaway Campaign For The Upcoming Valentine 2015

The valentine 2015 is very near and this is also the good time for you to prepare some good samples of your products to make them known by the public. Have you planed your giveaway campaign for this special season? Congratulations if you have not done this job because I will show you some effective tips right here and right now.

Make the eye-catching sample

The sample that is going to use as the giveaways should be very attractive to the customers. This should be very cute or very gorgeous from the outside in order that it can make a big impression on people at the first sight. The question here is how to make it look pretty eye-catching at the lowest cost because the sample only can cost you a large amount of money. You can think about some young designers – not the ones who are experienced in design. By this way, you can save a lot of money but still can have a very attractive design of the sample and more special, this design will be very fashionable because the young always know what is going on better than the other ones. If you are good at design, it is very good to have your own design. I am sure if your name is known by a lot of people, your sample with your own design will have a better effect on the public. However, if you are very good, do not try it at home! You will throw a large amount of money out of the window but gain nothing.

The outside design of the sample should be simple but look great. Do not try to make it too much complicated, the potential customers will not like. For example you could use the simple bag instead of the thick and durable bag. That will save you a lot of money for to use in the other step of this campaign like the manufacture process.

Produce a good product sample

The sample must be very good to catch the attention as well as the preference of the customers. This can cost you not too much money if you know how to do it in the right way for example you can make a sample in the small size. The kind of products that are usually launched by the giveaway campaign is perfume, food, drink… In the valentine season, the most giveaways are perfume and new chocolate kind. Every year, the perfume is consumed the most before the valentine because this is the time when the two love-birds show their care about the other and also their love. The chocolate is the same thing but the giveaway campaign can work only if the kind of chocolate is very different in favor so that they can love at the first tasting time. And if your product is just meh, you do not try to make your effort on this giveaway campaign because the thing you gain will be much less than the cost you pay for.

Good sample requires your factory chain to work hard in order to not leave any mistake in the product. If a small mistake occurs, you can lose in the giveaway campaign. So, mark my words, you have to do it very seriously to make the really good sample to launch the market. If your product sample is really good, I am sure that you will bring a lot of profit in the upcoming valentine season.

Target the right target

This seems very simple but to choose the right target to start this marketing campaign, you have to spend a lot of time to study about the public especially the one you want to sell the product to. This process can take you weeks before you can clearly tell what market segment you want to aim at. The giveaway campaign is not cheap, so you have to do it very exactly to save money and raise the effect of the giveaway campaign. For this valentine season, the campaign of course is the young. It is hard for you to decide who are having their partner now and who not, so the target should be the young. Another target should be the couple that have married recently. The campaign area is the important one to consider, too because the area contains the target that you aim to. So, you have to learn about the area before commence this campaign. With the valentine 2015, I would like to suggest you the university, the supermarket will be great ones for you.

Boost Sales In The Days Of New Year

After Christmas, sales are going down and the same goes for revenue. The question that is in consideration is: Whether giveaway is regarded as a good way to conduct in term of boosting sale? There are a lot of different opinions. Some businessmen said that it is a good choice while others give completely opposite takes on. And what do you think? If you are in charge of head position like marketing manager or business manager, this considered thing is not strange to you. But if you just run your own business, you have to spend time in order to study about the effect of doing giveaway to the sales as well as revenue your business will make.

Giveaway will cost you fairly larger amount of money

This is the fact that giveaway is one of the most costly marketing methods. Moreover, it also costs a lot of time and energy, too. Just make a simple calculation, for one hundred targets in an area for example a town, you will have to give out one hundred products your operation made as gifts. Assuming that the average cost of each gift is only 5$, leading you to a total expense is 500$, just for 100 targets in a town. However, you have to make the larger number, not 100 targets only because the 80/20 rule affects quite accurately in business. So, now, let’s calculate the total amount of money spent on giveaway campaign. You’ll absolutely have to take a twice or even more on this marketing manner.

However, it’s worth this price. Equaling to the large amount of expense, giveaway can totally bring you a much more profit if you know exactly how to do and use it smartly. The word “smart” here means that the way you use this marketing method must suit your business as well as your targets, and the areas of doing business, of course! I will talk about the other side of giveaway marketing method right now.

Giveaway can touch the potential customers’ emotions

Yes, it is! Especially, when you are launching a new product even a new line of products, the giveaway method will be the best way for you to conduct in order to gain more profit in the future. But, the question still considered is that for the old product, will it work? It depends on the extend of “old”. How long have you launched this type of product? If it is about 2 or 3 years, you should not use this method because it will cost you a lot of money but not bring you the expected result. And if it is only 1 year and less, you should consider the giveaway. I tell “consider” because whether you conduct this method or not, it depends on the budget your company have and can expense for the giveaway marketing campaign. Back to the main thought, giveaway can touch the potential customers’ emotions very well. It is very easy to understand because the sample (the product in small size/amount/… is given to the targets as gift) presents the product that you want to sell, or more accurate, you exactly want them to buy it. When the potential customers use the samples, they will absolutely have their live experiences on the product. This action will lead to the emotion of the potential customers for the product. For example, they will like to use it one more or even they will love it. Only a little “more” can give you a big success in your business with the launched product.

In fact, I have used this marketing method to boost sales of the gaming chair products. Like other products in the market, their sales often lower than the last days of the year and slowly number out during a few months at the beginning of the year. To make this campaign a big success of my own business, I combined it to the available reviews for example putting a gaming chair reviews tab on my official website for the potential customers. The reviews are very useful, especially giving the potential customers the feelings they do not have when they experienced the sample. Little by little, it will encourage them to buy the product.