Try These Clever Swag Ideas For 2018

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Are you looking for new ideas to get your visitors excited about your event swag? Here are 10 trends in event promotional items and some hot products you should be aware of. Get your event attendees excited about your giveaways and stay ahead of your competitors!

This is a sponsored post by Arrow Promotional. More information about Event Manager Blog’s sponsored posts.

Event swag is a valuable marketing tool that is always well-received and sought after. If you provide an item that is thoughtful and well-matched to your target audience, it will be frequently used and offer a constant reminder of the company that kindly gifted it to them. If, on the other hand, you provide an item that is commonplace or old and tired, it may not be an effective use of your resources. Even on a limited budget, there are many great and affordable options to be had.  

Lots of traditional event swag items have been reinvented to offer a modern or new twist on popular items. Here are the key trends we are seeing in the event promotional space and some ideas for the types of items you may want to invest in for 2018.

  1. Nostalgic Items

Giveaways that transport people back to their youth or childhood are really popular right now. Nostalgic items such as bubbles, puzzles, jump ropes, stationery, TV-inspired themes and retro sweets can turn back the clock and get people reminiscing. Make use of items that have a modern use, but are designed to look like a reincarnation of something else. For instance, retro shapes could include a telephone booth, cassette tape or classic car. A vintage-styled Bluetooth speaker is a perfect mix of old and new.

Fidget spinners, desk games or doodle pads provide a welcome diversion for professionals during lengthy business phone calls, and often these types of gifts are shared with appreciative family members, including children.

You can also follow through with the nostalgia theme for your event or tradeshow booth. Incorporate such ideas as an old-time game show or quiz format, with retro and vintage items as prizes, so that all of your branding ties together in a fun and appealing way.

  1. Wellness Items

Society as a whole is becoming a lot more health-conscious, with people watching what they eat, exercising more and taking better care of their mental well-being. Stress-reducing promotional products such as coloring books, journals and aromatherapy oils, can be thoughtful gifts. Sports bottles (both foldable and handheld versions), travel mugs, fruit infuser bottles and modern thermal flasks, which keep liquids hot or cold for hours, are always welcome and will be frequently used, putting your branding in front of your clients every day. Pedometers, heart trackers, microfiber towels, yoga mats and sports bags are also popular for people looking to make healthier living choices.

  1. Functional Items

Any products that can make our busy lives easier are likely to be appreciated. Smartphone power banks are a boon to any customer – nobody wants to run out of juice when they’re on the move! Mobile screen cloths are an affordable option with a large, full-color imprint area. Funky phone and tablet sleeves, cases and screen protectors are other choices. Also consider flashlights, travel adaptors, RFID shielding wallets, luggage tags, baggage scales, car wash kits, tool kits, and roadside safety kits.

  1. Technology Items

Technology is a big part of life today, so tech-focused gifts can help us to get more out of products we already rely on. The smartphone wallet is a hot trend at the moment. This is a compact, branded silicone pocket which attaches to the back of your phone and securely holds bank cards, hotel keys, ID, etc. to reduce the need to carry a full wallet or purse. They’re ideal for a run or a quick trip to the supermarket. Phone grips and mounts attach to your smartphone or tablet to hold them or stand them on a surface, making it easier to take selfies, share content or view images. Cable managers and adapters are other handy gifts that come in tons of styles.

  1. Work-related Items

We spend most of our waking hours at work, so items to improve productivity and efficiency, or simply brighten up the working day are wise choices and keeping your branded item visible in the office means your company will be kept front of mind with your recipients. USB flash drives, particularly large capacity versions, are treasured. It doesn’t just have to be a plain old rectangular format, either – there are endless options available, in different shapes, materials and even wearable versions, such as wristbands, keyrings and lanyards. Your content can be bulk-loaded onto the drives too, providing your clients with info in advance of an event.

Other promotional items available across all price brackets range from sticky notes, mouse pads, multi-functional highlighter pens and desk caddies, through to sleek portfolios, laser pointers and high-end writing instruments.

Other promotional items available across all price brackets range from weekly planning or to-do lists, sticky notes, mouse mats, multi-functional highlighter pens and desk tidies, through to sleek portfolios, laser pointers and foldable cargo boxes.

  1. Items That Inspire a Sense of Adventure

If your promotional item is used during social occasions that highlight the good things in life, it makes great associations with your brand. Inspire a love of the great outdoors with modern cooler bags, picnic blankets, picnic sets, bottle openers and Swiss army knives. In case of weather emergencies, crank flashlights, umbrellas and ponchos can be thoughtful promotional items to share, too.

  1. Cool Gadgets

It’s fun to share gifts that get people excited. Headphones, wireless speakers, action cameras and drones certainly create a buzz. Another idea is a Bluetooth tracker, which attaches to your keys, smartphone or luggage and enables you to locate the item in question if it goes missing.  

  1. Ethical Items

There are tons of sustainable promotional items to choose from nowadays that use recycled materials, are produced responsibly and are ethically sourced. Ask your promotional products vendors which items they would recommend and make sure to verify the environmental credentials before you buy. If you specifically want to reinforce a responsible approach, seeds and plants are a joyful and economical gift to share. Reusable shopping bags, or lunch totes, are practical giveaways too. Solar chargers and recycling sorting bags are other great items to consider.

  1. Quality Names

For a real wow factor, provide a quality, household-name item for your recipients. A product from a well-respected brand can cement the value of your giveaway and highlight the importance of the individual receiving it. When it comes to promotional products, not all event planners realize that providing a brand name is a potential option.

  1. Gift Sets

If you have a decent budget to work with, it is also worth exploring gift sets, rather than just a single giveaway item. A boxed, well-presented set looks much more valuable and impressive and provides a suite of useful, matching items for the event attendee to enjoy.

In Conclusion

Event promotional items, products and ideas are constantly developing. These are 10 of the hottest trends in event swag for 2018, highlighting some of the most innovative ideas to match any budget and price range. If your event and trade show giveaways need a shakeup, these products are definitely worth exploring!