Between trade shows, private events, fundraisers, galas, incentive trips, and annual or semi-annual conferences, it doesn’t take long to collect a LOT of random branded giveaways that are destined for the trash. At the same time, most event organizers don’t like the idea of sending guests home empty-handed.
Every once in a while, a timely promotional item comes along that’s a great fit (remember touch-free tools at the start of the pandemic?), but for the most part, giveaway items tend to fall between
a) too expensive to execute on a large scale or..
B) too boring and over-used to be of any value to the guest.
Here are a few of our current favorites sure to impress even the most seasoned event attendee:
From succulents to tree saplings to herbs, plants are unique, attractive, positive, and have real staying power when it comes to something an attendee might keep. They also have the benefit of being green and eco-friendly as opposed to a plastic branded items like a pen.
They’re generally inexpensive too and, if you can find a local plant nursery or nature-oriented sponsor, they may help you obtain your plant giveaways at a favorable cost in exchange for a mention or donation to their organization.
It’s true what they say: the way to a person’s heart is through their stomach. But don’t just slap a sticker on a bag of popcorn and call it a day.
Think about what your brand stands for as well as the purpose of the event.
Raising money for homeless pets? Think about a baking kit for dog treats.
Launching a “spicy” new service? Give away a guacamole kit with a variety of hot sauces. Again, getting a partner for your food idea can be mutually beneficial for all involved.
Private Collections & Limited Editions
Nothing makes an item more crave-worthy than knowing not everyone can have it. Put together a variety of swag bag items in sets, so only 4 or 5 guests end up with the same item. You can also work this into an event activity such as a prize wheel, or an ice-breaker swag swap.
Alternatively, you can post QR codes around your event (or throughout your digital event) with each code taking people to only a certain part of the swag collection. They can choose then to either redeem or keep looking for another code – but once the gifts in one collection are gone, they’re gone.
Although newer aircraft are adding Bluetooth functionality to their entertainment options, the vast majority still expect people to carry (or purchase) hardwired headphones with jacks to connect to audio.
The same goes for stereo and speaker components, which makes sharing audio or video from your phone to larger screens can be troublesome. The simplest adapters cost less than $10 each and can end up being one of the most useful pieces of swag anyone has ever received.
The Gift of Time
Looking for a way to excite your employees at a corporate event? Give away a day worth of paid time off to every attendee. Creative twists on this same idea include allowing attendees to “gift it forward” to another employee or to raffle their day to win up to 5 days vacation.
(You could also choose 2 days, 3 days, or any other time that works for you).