Is Your Trade Show Giveaway a Good Idea?

Trade show giveaway

When creating your trade show budget and branding, consider the giveaway item(s), or swag, your trade show exhibit will have. When participating in a trade show, the goal is to get noticed and develop quality leads that can encourage blossoming business relationships.  Determining whether your trade show giveaway is a good idea can be tricky.

Consider Your Trade Show Budget

Will you be budgeting for 100 ballpoint pens or 100 t-shirts? What about pricier items like electronics (think portable chargers) or gift cards? Will you give everyone an item and offer a bigger prize to more qualified leads or “winners” if it’s a contest? Is there a cost to branding  those items and possibly shipping them to the winner(s)? Ideally, your trade show giveaway item(s) should be branded for maximum name and brand recognition. Consider the quantity, quality, and delivery of your trade show giveaway when budgeting your time and money.  

Is it Valuable & Relevant?

Trade show giveaways are a great idea if the item will be of true value to both leads and visitors, and encourages discussion. Unique trade show giveaways that are valuable and distinct will inevitably attract visitors more than generic and/or cheap products. Generally it’s best practice to avoid candy and cheesy items as trade show giveaway items. Give away a Rolex at your next event and of course you’ll be remembered (but maybe not in budget!). Between the Rolex and the stress ball there are tons of opportunities to wow your attendees with a unique trade show giveaway. Ensure the giveaway is also relevant to your business and brand. If you have a new product launching, announcement or service available, a trade show giveaway that reminds the potential customer of your brand and makes a lasting impression can help convert those trade show leads into customers.

For example, a trade show booth had attendees play whack-a-mole. Definitely a fun idea, but it was  unrelated to their brand therefore visitors didn’t remember the exhibitor. In contrast, a shipping and logistics company had a themed booth geared toward their promise of helping you ‘jump through the hoops of shipping and logistics.’ There were hoop games, booth staff incorporating hoops in their outfits, and the giveaway was a hula-hoop, all in all a well connected idea that lead to increased brand notoriety.  

Level Up

Once you have identified your trade show giveaway, make sure that there are two or more levels of items available. One item should be reserved for average attendees and raise general brand awareness presence. The second item should be reserved for those with whom you want to leave an impression and lead to further engagement. Consider a custom or unique trade show giveaway (no more mouse pads or coffee mugs). Giving attendees an item they are likely to use in their everyday life keeps your brand top of mind.

Ultimately, a well thought out and executed trade show giveaway can be a good idea and can garner more engagement with your sales leads. For more information on how to make your trade show booth stand out or if you’d like more information on how to have the best trade show booth, all you have to do is contact us today!


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