SWAG for Trade Shows and Brand Building

An easy way to meet the challenge of getting the word out about your business or web site is to order inexpensive, custom printed promotional items and give them away at every opportunity. Custom printed items and apparel are used as giveaways on cold calls, corporate gifts, trade show “swag,” sales meeting motivational freebies and for new product launches.

People still use pens. Most will see if your company name is on a pen. Don’t buy pens at the office supply store. Spend almost the same amount of money on custom imprinted pens with any combination of your company name, logo, phone number or web site address. Have a break room for employees or a conference room for client meetings? Buy coffee mugs printed with your logo and company slogan. Custom printed notepads can be set out for training and seminars. All of these items are practical and useful and they boost brand awareness.

Promotional items can be inexpensive giveaways, such as pens, mugs, key chains, calendars or magnets. Or they can be more expensive such as custom beach towels, clocks, plaques, tote bags, umbrellas or leather covered notepads. Silk screened or embroidered clothing are also considered promotional items. These can be golf shirts, caps, visors, jackets or the traditional printed tee-shirt.

Trade shows, conferences and expos are all great ways to help get the word out using promotional items. I’ve already posted about how attending conferences improve online business by talking with companies and exhibitors as well as connecting with an audience. Don’t underestimate the value of personally handing someone a freebie after shaking their hand and introducing yourself. This makes them feel valued and more than just a passer-by. The items they take away with them, whether it’s a free calculator or baseball cap, will be a reminder of you and your business every time they see it or use it. If the item is clever or a novelty item, chances are they will show it to others or share it – which again helps get the word out for you.

People in the tech world have a variety of big conventions and conferences to consider attending. If you have not joined an organization for your niche industry that hosts a trade show, there is a web site that lists a variety of Internet Marketing and SEO Conferences in North America as well as around the world. These are four of the top upcoming annual internet and technology related conferences:

  • BlogHer
  • Consumer Electronics Show (CES)
  • South By Soutwest (SXSW)
  • Word Camp


The next BlogHer convention will be July 25-27 2013 in Chicago, IL. This is the biggest gathering of mommy bloggers in America.

CES is always held the second week of January in Las Vegas, next year’s dates are January Jan 7-10, 2014. CES is the world’s largest gathering of consumer-technology companies

SXSW is everything new and hip in Music, Film and Interactive. Next year’s dates are March 7-16 2014 in Austin TX

Word Camp is everything WordPress, the world’s most popular blogging platform. Various dates, depend on the host city: San Francisco, Atlanta, New York, Las Vegas, Phoenix, Seattle, Montreal, Victoria, Calgary, Austin, Milwaukee, Chicago, Miami and more.

Conventions and conferences are all about meeting new people, learning about new products and collecting SWAG. Make sure that if you exhibit in a trade show for your industry niche, that you have a good supply of items custom printed with your company name and marketing message that gives them a good, lasting impression.

becky wilcox
Author: becky wilcox

Contribution made by Becky W.

Article written by

Contribution made by Becky W.

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