Archive for July, 2016

5 Giveaway Ideas for Your Next Trade Show

Giving away free gifts is one of the best ways to get people excited about visiting your trade show booth. The giveaways you provide should be effective marketing tools, but they should also be eye-catching and practical. If you want to offer more than just “standard” marketing swag like water bottles and t-shirts, here are a few trade show ideas that will make your next marketing event especially memorable for your team, as well as those attending the trade show.

Smart Wallets

Most people would be happy to get a cell phone cover, but you can take it one step further by offering a smart wallet. These phone covers have space for carrying money and credit cards, making them even more appealing and useful. You can offer the smart wallets in your company colors, and feature your logo and contact information on the item as well.

Lip Balm

This may not seem like a conventional marketing tool, but when you think about it, it’s a great way to keep your business on customers’ minds. Most people keep their lip balm in their pocket or purse, and use it several times a day. So, every time they apply the lip balm, they’ll see your logo and company colors. This increases the chances that they’ll contact you the next time they need your services. Lip balms are relatively inexpensive to make as well, so you can easily give them out to people who visit your trade show booth without making a huge dent in the company budget.

Digital Rewards

Skip the regular giveaway items and give trade show attendees a gift that will help them to remember your company. A download for a free movie rental or a discount at their favorite store will increase the chances that they’ll remember your business. The download can also be for free music or books. These giveaways are pretty affordable as well. Since most attendees would be excited to get an online gift, you can create a buzz without spending a lot of money.

Power Banks

Power banks are mobile chargers that attendees are sure to notice if you display them at your trade show booth. These chargers are extremely convenient, and are becoming increasingly popular at trade shows. Choose chargers that are colorful and easy to spot, and print your logo and website on the items to ensure that you’re properly marketing your business while interacting with people who may become long-term customers.

Tote Bags

Send trade show attendees home with something they’ll use for years to come. A duffel bag that features your slogan and contact information is practical and can also be stylish. If you’re hosting a big giveaway at your trade show table, you can fill the duffel bag with other marketing materials like mouse pads, pens and notebooks. You can also include a gift certificate to allow new customers to experience your products and services for free or at a discounted price. These types of gifts will get people talking, and could boost the chances that even more people will attend the next trade show you participate in.

Trade Show Gift Ideas

If you’re having a drawing at your next trade show, it’s important that the gifts attendees receive are exciting, useful and a great reflection on your business. Of course, you also want these marketing gifts to be affordable, and they should be an effective method for word-of-mouth marketing as well. Here are a few trade show ideas that will make your company one of the most popular at your next marketing event.

Gift Cards

In order to make a gift card drawing worthwhile, it’s important to have great relationships with other businesses. You’ll be giving out gift cards from your company for discounted items or free gifts. However, if you have partnerships with other businesses that would interest your customers, people will be much more motivated to participate in the drawing. For instance, if you sell software, and technical professionals are your target audience, it’s a good idea to partner with a local coffee shop or electronics company. These companies can offer gift cards that will give your customers more of the products they need, or a free coffee to help them get through an online project.


You may see hats and t-shirts at trade show booths often, but people will always be more excited about these items if they can get them for free. Hats and t-shirts are appealing to people who love comfortable clothing and often need to grab something to throw on while running errands or working out. When these items feature your logo and slogan, this is another way to get customers use to seeing your company’s images. This way, they’ll be more likely to call you first when they need your services. You can give these items away during a few drawings, and save a larger item like a windbreaker sweatshirt with your logo on it for a grand prize drawing. These items can be reserved for customers who have been patronizing your business for a while and keeping up with your trade show activity.

Laptop Bags

Mostly everyone carries a laptop these days, so you can promote your company by having a draw for a laptop bag. Bags that have several compartments will make the item more convenient, and the larger the bag, the more likely it is that several different laptop brands can fit in the bag. The more people that enter the draw, the more items you can include in the laptop bag. For instance, adding a mouse pad and USB that also features your logo will make for a practical and appealing prize that attendees won’t mind being eligible for.

Gift Baskets

Finally, don’t forget that people love free food. A gift basket is one of the trade show ideas that will always get your business noticed, no matter what type of products you sell. You can arrange to get water bottles and chocolate bars labeled with your company’s logo, which will serve as a subconscious to familiarize customers to your brand. You can also include things like coffee and tea, along with fresh fruit and a gift certificate to motivate attendees to stop by your business in the near future.

Eco Friendly Booth Ideas

As you’re organizing your trade show display, you may want to send the message to attendees that your company is environmentally friendly. These days, being “green” can be an effective selling point. Natural resources are at an all-time low, and showing customers that you care about the environment could also give the impression that you’re committed to stellar customer service and have a desire to help your community. Here are a few eco-friendly booth ideas you can incorporate at your next trade show.

Booths Made from Recycled Materials

Plastics that have been recycled and made into backdrop stands or display booths can be both eco-friendly and visually appealing. This can also be a great selling point for your business, in case attendees want to know about your company’s “green” practices. You and your team can also do your part to customize the booth while making sure it’s safe for the environment by using eco-friendly paint to give the trade show booth a customized touch.

Bamboo Displays

Bamboo is one of the most durable and attractive eco-friendly materials. Bamboo has an elegant yet modern look to it, and you can even add a bamboo mat in front of your trade show display to make your booth more inviting. Lighter shades of bamboo are ideal if your company has an upbeat and innovative image. Darker bamboo shades are distinguished and classic, and can give the impression that your products and services can be trusted.

Eco-Friendly Swag

When you give out marketing materials to attendees, be sure to point out the items that are made from eco-friendly or recycled materials. For example, you can give out bottles of water made from recycled plastic, or hand out your marketing materials in a box made from recycled paper. Biodegradable edible gifts that are also healthy, including fresh fruit or nuts can be included in your marketing materials, and you can label the snacks with recycled paper as well. If you’re giving away t-shirts, make sure that they’re made from recycled cotton. Mouse pads that are made from recycled plastic or eco-friendly materials are another effective way to show off your logo while giving attendees something useful. It may also be a good idea to include a card with information on all the ways your company is doing its part to better the environment.

Recycling Contests

Get people excited about doing business with your company by announcing a recycling contest at your trade show booth. Include signage at your display, letting people know that you’re offering a prize to the attendee who can recycle your product(s) in the most creative way. For instance, customers may make one of your t-shirts into a beach bag, or utilize one of your office supplies in a new an innovative way. The winner can receive a discount on future services, and you’ll get yet another opportunity to let potential customers know that you’re committed to preserving the world’s natural resources. The contest can also give you more ideas about the ways that you can offer quality products to customers while using top-notch materials that are good for the environment.

Guerilla Marketing Ideas for Your Next Trade Show

You may be frantically working to determine which team members will man the trade show booth, which colors you’ll use in your display, and whether or not you’ll give out gift bags as you prepare for your next event. While these are all great marketing tactics in one way or another, there are also some guerilla methods you’ll want to use if you want to attract more attendees and turn them into regular customers. Here are a few marketing techniques that will help to make your trade show appearance worthwhile.

Have a Pre-Show

You can advertise your presence at an upcoming trade show on social media, or on your company website. Build the anticipation with quality videos or engaging or funny posts. Show footage of your trade show display from last year to give attendees a glimpse of the quality they will encounter at this year’s show. This is also the time to advertise that you’ll be giving away some promotional gifts or discounts to the first few people who visit your booth, or to those who share information about the trade show on social media.

Send a “Preview” Gift

Ask people who are interested in attending the trade show to sign up to your newsletter on your website to get a gift. You could send out keys to potential customers, and one of the keys could unlock a safe to a number of marketing gifts. Or, you could mail out one half of a gift certificate, while reserving the other half. The attendee who has the matching half wins a discount from your business. People love games, and you’re likely to get a crowd of people around your trade show booth to see who the winner is.

Offer Incentives for “Swag”

When you get to the trade show venue, give bartenders, janitors and other venue staff a small tip to wear your marketing merchandise. You may not be able to talk to everyone at the trade show personally, but if attendees see someone wearing a hat or t-shirt that features your logo, they’re more likely to come to your booth to ask questions.

Host a Giveaway Every Hour

Bring lots of promo gifts with you, and host a giveaway each hour you’re at the trade show booth. You can ask attendees trivia questions, hold a contest to see who can draw your logo the best in the shortest amount of time, or pass out tickets and have a drawing each hour. When attendees know that there’s a chance they’ll get free stuff, they’re more likely to frequent your booth. This gives you an opportunity to share more information about your company.

Use Music and Dancing

A flash mob is sure to get everyone’s attention, and it’s a fun way to promote your company’s products and services. It also makes for a trade show experience attendees won’t forget. A choir or singing group can also sing your slogan or a song you’ve written that sums up the mission of your company. Music is a great way to attract customers and help them to remember important details about your business.

Fun Trade Show Game Ideas

Games and interactive activities are among the most effective ways that you can attract clients to your trade show booth. While attendees are participating in the game, you can take the opportunity to teach them more about your company’s philosophy, mission, services or products. Here are a few trade show ideas that are sure to make you a big hit at your next event.

Trivia Questions

Get your clients thinking with some fun and interesting trivia questions. You can time attendees to see how many questions they can answer in 30 seconds or one minute, and provide a small prize for each correct answer. Or, you can offer marketing materials for attendees who answer the day’s trivia question correctly. Items like t-shirts, coffee mugs and key chains are usually appealing to customers. Of course, you can also offer more innovative gifts like USB drives, cell phone covers and gift certificates, especially if your trivia question is pretty challenging.


Give each attendee who comes to your trade show booth a ticket, and encourage them to return to the booth at a certain time or listen for the raffle announcement to see if their ticket number is called. You can offer a prize pack filled with marketing materials like a coupon for a free trial of your services, or a gift basket of product samples. This is one of the ways that word-of-mouth marketing can be effective. Attendees are likely to tell others about the raffle, which will bring more people to your booth, giving you more marketing opportunities.

Prize Wheel

A prize wheel is an exciting way to get people to “try their luck” at your trade show table while you teach them more about your products and services. You can offer a number of small prizes on the wheel in addition to a grand prize. Or, you can let attendees spin the wheel to get special discounts and limited edition products. This simple game is a great way for you to give away marketing materials, and people always love getting things for free.

Social Media Contests

It’s important to include social media in your business marketing. Holding a contest that involves social media is one of the best trade show ideas if you’re trying to reach a younger crowd or an audience that is especially tech-savvy. You can give a prize to the attendee who posts the most creative photo as it relates to your company. Or, you can hold a social media contest to see who can come up with the best new jingle or logo for your business. These activities will likely get your business more online exposure and increase the interaction you have with your current social media followers.

You can also make the most of social media or the technology resources at your trade booth to encourage attendees to create a short video testimonial about your product. Acknowledge the videos you like the most publicly, and offer a free prize or product discount to help secure even more clients for your business.