Trade Show, Event, Travel & Attraction Promos

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Top Trade Show Tips For Attendees And Exhibitors


top trade show tips

Trade shows are essential in business. Whether you are attending or exhibiting, there are a few trade show tips that can help you navigate and make them more successful. You don’t want your trade show investment to be a flop, so let’s take a look at some of the top do’s before your next event rolls around.

Tips for attending a trade show:

  • Determine why you are attending. To meet new suppliers, educate yourself on a new topic, see the latest and greatest? Once you determine the reason you’re going, how you walk the show will point back to your mission.
  • Prepare for the show and know the answers to the following questions: What are the things you need? What are things you want?
  • Attend presentations. I know it is easy to blow these off, but educating yourself on your industry and competition is key.
  • Bring plenty of business cards. You may hand them out to the exhibitors or meet a future employee walking the show.
  • Strike up conversations. You never know who you are speaking with.
  • Set appointments with the exhibitors you really want to meet with. They may not be available if you just walk by.

 

 Tips for exhibiting at a trade show:

  • Get a feel of why your audience is attending. (I’ve listed the top reasons below.)
  • Have an exciting, professional booth. Let ePromos help you.
  • Look professional in custom polo shirts or logo button-down shirts.
  • Just as I advised above, set up appointments with your top prospects and customers. Make sure to have an extra-special incentive for them at the booth. (Our technology promos have been the hottest items.)
  • Cost-effective giveaways are a must to get the casual contact to stop by. Some of our top items include: mints and gum, tote bags and drawstring bags, lip balm, car chargers, sticky notes (great for tagging your catalog!), and pens.
  • Collect data and contacts
  • Strike up conversations with everyone. Trade shows are all about face-to-face contact.
  • Follow up. You can do everything right, but not follow up on the conversations, and you have a tradeshow fail.

In a survey conducted by Skyline Exhibits and EXPO Magazine, attendees were asked why they attend trade shows, conventions, and conferences. Below are their responses.

  • See new products: 92%
  • Keep up to date on industry trends/issues: 78%
  • See many companies at one time: 75%
  • See existing suppliers: 67%
  • See specific companies or products: 67%
  • Network with colleagues and/or vendors: 65%
  • Create and/or strengthen industry relationships: 60%
  • See products in-person that were reviewed online: 57%
  • Get technical information or specifications: 52%
  • Attend seminars/workshops: 41%
  • Place orders: 25%
  • Source partners: 25%
  • Present at educational sessions: 16%
  • Because our competition attends: 14%
  • Recruit employees: 3%

Our Brand Consultants are here to talk trade shows with you. Are you unsure what promotional giveaways to choose? How many you’ll need? When to hand them out? Check out our guide to custom trade show giveaways, and then call us to get started on your trade show promos.

Do you have other tips for a successful trade show? Share them by commenting on this post.

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Top 8 Unique Promotional Items To Give Away At A Tradeshow


One of the greatest marketing and networking approaches is the tradeshow. Companies from all over the world gather together at convention to sell their business to the masses. There is one aspect of a tradeshow that attendees look forward to the most: the inevitable booth freebies. Everyone loves free giveaways, and no one expects to leave a tradeshow empty handed.

Having unique promotional items to give away at a tradeshow is an integral part of expanding your brand and making the most of the tradeshow experience. It can be tough to decide which items to invest your capital on with the different promotional choices available. Luckily, ePromos has simplified the selection process by identifying the top unique promotional items.

Get Remembered With Unique Promotional Items

frosted handle custom plastic bag
1. Swag Bag

With all the materials tradeshow vendors give away, attendees will need a way to carry all their corporate swag. A simple frosted handle custom bag will be a much appreciated item. This promotional item is also a strategic marketing tool since other vendors’ items will be hidden inside the bag with your company logo displayed on the outside.

 

 

 

 

 

custom lanyard
2. Custom Lanyards

Keep your logo out in the open with a custom lanyard. It is common for tradeshow attendees to be required to wear some form of identifying badge. Having a lanyard displays identification easily, and your brand will be out in the open as people network their way around the floor of the show.

 

 

 

 

 

 
retractable custom badge holder
3. The Name Game

A retractable custom badge holder is another way to put your brand out in the open while helping tradeshow participants show their IDs. An innovative feature of this badge holder is the ability to print ID photos on the underlay of the clip.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bic Clic Stic promotional pens
4. Write On

Another classic and effective giveaway is the pen. A Bic Clic Stic promotional pen can easily be branded with the logo of your company. Likewise, its product life span continues long after the show, keeping your company’s name at the forefront in the office and at home.

 

 

 

 

 

 

promotional sunblock packets
5. SPF Protection

For summer tradeshow or outdoor events, a SPF 30 sunscreen promotional sunblock packet is a unique way to be remembered. Customize this distinct product with your company’s name or logo.

 

 

 

 

 

 

round custom button
6. Say It With Words

A round custom button adds instant flair to tradeshow attendees. Incorporating a clever image or saying onto the button encourages attendees to place the buttons on bags or clothing, giving your brand extra exposure.

 

 

 

 

custom gum pack
7. Chew It Up

Combat bad breath and potential sweet cravings with a 12 piece custom chewing gum pack. The sharing mentality means your custom gum pack will be seen by multiple tradeshow guests and beyond.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Top 8 Unique Promotional Items for Tradeshows by ePromos
8. Feel The Energy

A magnetic custom clip is a useful item for reminders, memos, and photos. A common refrigerator item, this memorable giveaway keeps your company’s name or logo alive for years to come.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

No matter what you choose to giveaway, make sure you stand out from the crowd and give them something they will use. ePromos.com provides all the options you need for your next tradeshow.

 

 


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10 Must-Have Promotional Items To Rock Your Next Tradeshow


You can’t exhibit at a tradeshow without promotional items. Or at least, you shouldn’t. The two go hand-in-hand. Promo giveaways draw traffic to your booth and get your brand noticed among aisles and aisles of other exhibitors.

Plus, people love cool swag at tradeshows. If it’s useful, interesting, or if it fills an immediate need – think custom bottled water or snacks – attendees will be clamoring to pick it up. That means a buzz at your booth and exposure to your brand each time they use your giveaways.

So, what are the must-have promo items for tradeshows? We’ve compiled a list of the 10 best promotional items for an effective show. Check them out here.

printed lanyard1. Promotional lanyards are huge at tradeshows. In fact, the second-most common use for lanyards is tradeshow badge holders. Learn more about this promotional tool – from materials and attachments to imprint options – in our educational guide on lanyards.

 

 

 

 

 

 

custom tablecloth2. Every tradeshow exhibitor should have a great-looking custom tablecloth. It’s one of the first things attendees see, so make it impactful. We recommend a four-color process to grab attention.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

roll-up vinyl banners3. Vivid and eye-catching, roll-up vinyl banners add an extra pop of visual appeal to your tradeshow booth. You want to be spotted from afar, and this is just the way to do it. When the show’s over, these banners are easy to roll up and store.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

logo badge holder4. Want people to flash your logo all over the tradeshow? Give them retractable logo badge holders. Every time they show their badge or get scanned, your logo is in full view – in crisp, vibrant full-color.

 

 

 

 

logo buttons

5. There’s a reason round logo buttons continue to be mainstays at tradeshows, conferences and other events – they work. You can’t help but notice the image and words on a button when you see one on someone’s shirt, jacket or bag. They’re also budget-friendly, with many costing around a quarter a piece.

 

 

 

 
custom plastic bags

6. There will always be swag at tradeshows, and people will always need a way to tote it around. Custom plastic bags are the answer. They’re immediately useful, and they also help reinforce brand recognition. This promo bag is made with high-density frosted plastic for a modern look, but there are hundreds of options for your brand and your show.

 

 

 

 

promotional pens

7. Promotional pens are perpetually hot items at tradeshows. They’re a cost-effective way to promote your brand, and everybody can use a new pen. Make promo pens distinctive for your company by imprinting the barrel and clip, and by choosing unique color combinations.

 

 

 

 

 

 

custom lip balm

8. You can’t go wrong with promotional lip balm at tradeshows. It’s a favorite among attendees because it provides immediate relief for chapped lips, and it’s easy to slip into a purse or pocket. For exhibitors, lip balm is creative and eye-catching. It’s offered in a medley of flavors and features your logo in vibrant full color.

 

 

 

 

 

custom mints

9. Custom candy is a tried-and-true way to get tradeshow attendees over to your booth. People love edible giveaways – whether it’s gum, chocolate or fiery cinnamon candies. A personalized box gets your logo seen every time they pop a piece in their mouth.

 

 

 

 

 

 

custom sticky flags

10. Keep your tradeshow giveaways useful to get your brand exposure after the show. Custom sticky flag folders are easy for attendees to pocket on the spot and then use back at the office.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Now that you’ve seen the top 10 promos for tradeshows, get answers to the most common questions about tradeshow giveaways. We got insight straight from successful exhibitors – learn from their tips before heading to your next show.

 

 


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Guide To Custom Trade Show Giveaways


Many of our clients have the same question: What do I need to know about custom trade show giveaways? They simply aren’t sure which promotional items to order and how many they’ll need.

It’s a great question to ask. Trade show giveaways are a critical component of the trade show experience. They can build a buzz at your booth, motivate prospects to action, communicate a message, create awareness and so much more.

To help our clients better understand custom trade show giveaways, we talked to exhibitors from a variety of industries to get answers to the top trade show questions.

Learn from their tradeshow tips to make your next tradeshow a triumph.

custom imprinted coastersThere are so many options – how do I decide on the right trade show giveaways?

Give it some thoughtful consideration, according to Dave Poulos, Chief Consultant for Granite Partners. “If you choose to distribute promotional items at a trade show, that choice should be as well-thought-out as the display construction, the sales training scheme for the event, the selection of size and location of the stand, and the selection of representatives working the show,” he says. “If the selection is made carefully, it can drive recognition and awareness. If you’ve really read the audience right, the item will be so specific to a particular population that it will help qualify that traffic and thin and focus the lead selection before they arrive.”

Paula Ledbetter Sellergren, Director of Marketing for Mather LifeWays, suggests the giveaways always meet three requirements: They’re a good fit for your brand, they’re functional and they have a splash factor. “We look at whether the giveaway will become a hot-ticket item that other attendees will see and want to seek us out for,” she says.

For Jay Veltz with Urban Armor Gear, samples are the best giveaways. “We often simply give away our products: protective cases and screen protectors for smartphones, PDAs and other portable electronic devices,” he says. “Sure, the cost is higher, but the likelihood that our cases will be used on a daily basis and create the exposure we desire is much higher.”

How many trade show giveaways do I need?

Most exhibitors agree: It all comes down to budget and expected attendance.

Barbara Sanner, CEO of Complete Marketing Solutions, looks at the size of the show. “For large shows of 2,000 or more expected attendees, I usually plan for 25% of attendees to stop by my booth and get a giveaway,” she says. “For smaller shows, I plan for 75% to get a giveaway.”

Jennifer Seyler, a PR professional who runs FitnessAndNutritionConversations.com, likes to determine if there is any flexibility in her marketing budget. “I take 10% of the expected attendance, so 900 if 9,000 people are expected, figure the associated cost ($10 per bag totaling $9,000) and determine if it’s in my budget or if there is wiggle room,” she says. “If there is wiggle room, I bump up the giveaway to between 1,000 and 1,200 with a trade show audience of this size.”

Ledbetter Sellergren looks not just at the number of attendees, but the makeup of the audience. “We see how many people attending are our best/potential customers, and this helps us set the budget,” she says.

Do I need to take my booth size into account?

Absolutely, according to Ledbetter Sellergren. “We consider how much room we have in our exhibit to store the giveaways or whether we need the exhibit hall to store them and bring them out to us as needed each day,” she says.

How do I time the distribution of my tradeshow giveaways?

Don’t put out all the items at once, says Seyler. “Get a feel for the crowd and distribute appropriately,” she suggests.

promotional cord wrapShould I offer more than one promotional item?

Yes, says Seyler, but be smart about it. “You start to find that you’re pushing the lower-cost item,” she says. “You also get people who come to your booth because they heard of your giveaway – which is typically the more expensive one.” Her solution: If you hand out more than one item, make sure their perceived value is the same.

Sanner agrees it’s a good strategy to offer more than one giveaway. “This is one of the best-kept secrets of trade show giveaways: Have different items to give away for different types of people who stop by your booth.”

She breaks her giveaways into levels A, B and C. Level A items are “y‘A’y, a real possibility!” “These are people who come by who have a real interest, an urgent need and could actually become a client.” This is a good time to pull out a higher-end item – $5 or more.

Level B items are “maybe they’ll ‘b’uy!” “These people have some interest in your product or service, and stop and talk awhile. For them, pull out your ‘secret stash’ of products that cost you $1.50 or so. If they buy from you, you’ll easily recover from your $1.50, and you’ve definitely built some goodwill.”

For those attendees who are simply checking things out, wondering what you do, Sanner has Level C giveaways that cost well under a buck a piece. “You appreciate their stopping by and want to show good faith,” she says.

Should I send promotional products pre- or post-tradeshow?

Seyler does not. “I keep the giveaways as a benefit to visiting the booth,” she says. “Pre-conference awareness is leveraged to gain additional traction to the booth, and giveaways during the conference provide additional excitement and potential buzz among attendees.”

custom grass planterDo I obtain any information from attendees before handing out the items?

Yes – Ledbetter Sellergren calls it “information currency.” “We have attendees complete an information card or give us their business card in exchange for our giveaways,” she says. “This way, they aren’t ‘trick-or-treating’ without us getting something in return.”

Can I use the giveaways as part of a contest?

Sure – it’s another point of interaction, and it’s an opportunity for attendees to keep thinking about your booth and tell others about their potential win, Seyler says.

Five bits of tradeshow wisdom from successful exhibitors:

1. “Make sure your giveaway makes sense to your brand and isn’t overused as a giveaway.”—Jennifer Seyler

2. “Give them something YOU-branded that they will use after the show is over.”—Paula Ledbetter Sellergren

3. “Smart, engaging, creative choices that engage the audience’s imagination, trigger a memory of what you do, your products or your brand promise, that are practical and useful within your industry are the best bets for effective giveaways.” —Dave Poulos

4. “Choose something useful or practical that has the potential to be put into everyday use.” —Jay Veltz

5. “Be sure that what you select has a long shelf life and the quality is there, even if it means paying a little more.” —Barbara Sanner


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Five Must-Have Promotional Products From The Kentucky Derby


Horse-racing fans had their pick of some pretty fantastic promotional products to commemorate the Kentucky Derby. From glassware for mint juleps to tote bags to showcase their love for the sport, there was a promo item for every kind of Derby fanfare.

Whether fans were at Churchill Downs or watching from afar, one thing is certain: They had to have custom logo products to memorialize the 139th running of the Kentucky Derby.

The event’s official online store is packed with promotional items ranging from promotional apparel and artwork to party gear such as napkins and plates.

As any Derby fan will attest, it isn’t all about the horses; it’s about celebrating an iconic American experience.

Orb came away victorious in the run for the roses. And, so did everyone who scored this great swag from the 2013 Kentucky Derby.

promo iPhone case1. A custom iPhone case captures the excitement from the Derby and puts it right on your phone.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

promo golf balls2. What a great way to combine two sports: custom golf balls featuring the Kentucky Derby logo.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

custom plush3. For the youngest Derby fans, promotional plush toy, Churchill Charlie, makes a fun commemorative gift.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

custom tote bag4. Custom tote bags are quintessential keepsakes—even better that these bags are bright and vibrant with a full-color print.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

promotional apparel5. For lady Derby fans who want to show their enthusiasm without the elaborate headwear, these custom sweatshirts are a must.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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Three Tips For Selecting Custom Trade Show Giveaways


If you’re heading to a trade show, you need custom trade show giveaways. They’re a tangible, cost-effective way to get your name in front of your audience—the majority of which are decision makers.

custom trade show giveaways

More than 80% of tradeshow attendees have the authority to influence buying decisions, and more than 50% buy something as a result of attending the show, according to a study from Exhibit Surveys.

Naturally, promotional trade show giveaways are a must. They boost your company’s sales and shorten the sales cycle. You can’t afford not to use them. Your competitors certainly will be using them to woo customers and prospects. That’s just the nature of trade shows.

You don’t have to blend in with all the other booths, though. You can stand out and make your company memorable with promotional items.

Follow these three tips when choosing trade show giveaways, and set your company apart at your next event:

1. Choose giveaways that make sense for your brand.   

There are thousands and thousands of promotional products on the market, but that doesn’t mean they’re all a great fit for your brand. To maximize the effectiveness of your trade show giveaways, always opt for products that tie in with your brand. People need to make an immediate connection with your company and the giveaway you’ve just placed in their hands. For example, if you’re in the healthcare industry, logo hand sanitizer makes more sense than a custom lighter. If you’re in the food business, a promotional cooler bag is a better choice than a custom dog leash. Keep your promo items relevant to your brand.

 

2. Make them appealing.

People flock to promotional items that are attractive, trendy and visually appealing. If they’ve never seen it before and it looks interesting, they’ll want to check it out. Plus, it shines a positive light on your brand when your logo is imprinted on high-quality, well-designed promotional products. Select trade show giveaways that have a natural appeal to your audience, and you’ll create a buzz around your booth.

 

3. Opt for promo items with a purpose.

Novelty products are fun, but if you want your logo to stick around for the long haul, your trade show giveaways should serve a real purpose for your audience. If attendees see a value in your giveaway, they’ll hold onto it. If not, it will likely end up in the trash; people can only schlep so much stuff at a tradeshow. Make sure your giveaways are useful and fill a universal need, such as custom bags or logo drinkware. Everyone has a need for these items, which makes them more likely to be used.

 

Promo know-how tip:

Don’t forget about your booth staff—you can maximize your trade show presence by dressing your trade show team in custom shirts or hats.