Are you planning your next tradeshow experience and desperately trying to figure out how to stand out in a sea of look-alikes?
It’s a difficult situation when every vendor gets roughly the same 100 square feet of booth space and everyone gets their booth decor from the same handful of suppliers. Then, of course, everyone has the same bucket of branded pens on the counter to give away to passersby…
What if you were to look past the same-old tradeshow giveaway items you’ve settled on in the past and give some thought to offering up something fun, entertaining, memorable and (dare we say it?) useful for visitors at your upcoming tradeshow appearance?
Not that there’s anything wrong with pens, notepads, or stress balls. But rather than asking, “what can I slap my logo on that’s cheap enough to give away?” why not ask yourself, “what’s something that will bring a smile to my target’s face as he or she walks by my booth? What can I give away that’s really going to be memorable?”
To help you get in the right frame of mind, let’s introduce you to Bob.
Bob is the epitome of your target prospect, and he’s currently wandering the aisles of your tradeshow, taking it all in. So, what is going to reach out and grab Bob’s attention to ensure he remembers your company hours or days later?
Go big or go home
Most tradeshow giveaways are just the right size to slip into a pocket (or conveniently provided plastic bag) and be forgotten. But what if your giveaway item was too wildly useful, too much fun, just too darn BIG to slip in a bag and forget about?
For example, how big an impression would a custom branded selfie stick make?
Imagine the situation:
Bob is wandering through a bright, noisy, crowded exhibition hall, regularly running into friends and colleagues he hasn’t seen in a year or more. He’s excited to be there, but he’s also overwhelmed and maybe a little stressed out.
Then, he wanders past your booth and finds a premium selfie stick offered up at no cost. Within 30 seconds, he has his phone installed in the holder and he’s smiling for the ubiquitous “me at the big tradeshow” selfie for the rest of the team back home. It’ll be on Instagram 10 seconds later.
You could turn Bob’s entire day around with an exciting gift like that. And with your logo and marketing message right there on the handle, you can bet he’s going to remember who did that for him, too.
Help Bob block out the noise
Tradeshows can be noisy, hectic, stressful environments. Especially if you’ve been there for several days already.
Your prospect – you remember Bob, right? – who’s wandering through the exhibition hall and stumbles upon your booth – might have a tension headache forming, or maybe he’s nervous about a meeting or presentation he needs to give later in the day.
Then, he passes your booth and is drawn to the basket of brightly colored devices piled high inside, free for the taking. It’s a pair of high-quality earbud-style headphones that can be plugged into his smartphone to listen to some relaxing music, catch up on voicemails, or maybe call home and hear the soothing voice of a loved one.
For just a few moments, you’ve carved out an oasis of quiet in a desert of noise, and your custom branded message is right there on the case for Bob to silently thank as he wanders on.
Or, help him make some noise
Now, picture Bob making it back to the hotel for the night after a long day at the show. He’s tired, hungry, and way too wired to sleep anytime soon. What he needs, more than anything else, is a way to unwind.
The minibar is a bit too pricey, and there’s nothing good on TV. But then, he remembers the incredibly thoughtful and valuable gift he picked up at your booth late that afternoon and, a few moments later, he’s lying back on the bed listening to his favorite relaxation playlist through the custom branded mobile speaker you gave him.
Once again, you’ve made his day with a valuable, useful, and memorable tradeshow giveaway.
Bring them together
One more example:
Here’s Bob one more time, sitting in the cramped coach section of his redeye flight home, listening to that relaxation playlist again. He’s been trying to pluck up the courage to introduce himself to the lovely young lady beside him for over an hour now and just hasn’t been able to do it.
Then, she sighs and pulls out her own earbuds. Her phone is dead, and there’s two more hours in the flight.
That’s when he remembers that awesome giveaway he picked up at your booth this morning: the personalized headphone splitter – one of those great little devices he’d never considered buying but always wanted.
“Do you like The Beastie Boys?” he stammers, and her face lights up.
You’ve changed both their lives forever…
The moral of the story is simple:
When planning your next tradeshow experience, don’t settle for the same-old promotional giveaway items you’ve always used in the past. There are literally thousands of products available to choose from in hundreds of different categories. So use your creativity and put yourself in the shoes of your prospect: what would you find to be unforgettably cool?
Then, customize and order that for this year’s tradeshow giveaway.
About the Author:
Our guest blogger, Roxana Clares, is a product specialist and content marketing analyst for DiscountMugs. She is passionate about content creation that adds value and creative insight to an online audience, and believes in the importance of data to improve content marketing strategies. Roxana is the author of the DiscountMugs blog series.