Trade show giveaways can be powerful promotional tools when used properly. The right branded product will attract attention, engage booth visitors, facilitate recall after the show and provide easy-to-access contact information when it’s time to make a buying decision.

Here are four tips for using trade show giveaways effectively:

  1. Support Your Marketing Message. Trade show giveaways should be more than novelties. They should support your company’s primary marketing message. For example, if you’re selling computer-related products a branded USB flash drive, mouse pad or screen cleaner is ideal. If you’re in the health care industry hand sanitizer, a wellness calendar or health informational guide ties in seamlessly with your market.
  2. Practicality Rules. The most effective giveaways are items that fill a practical need for booth visitors. Toys may be fun and attract attention but they offer limited value. The novelty of “fun” items wears off and those items will be tossed or forgotten. A stainless water bottle, mug or calendar will follow recipients to their homes and offices and promote your message long after the trade show.
  3. Give Multiple Items. You want to offer something of value to each person who visits your booth. But not every visitor will turn into a qualified lead. So invest in at least two different giveaways. Give customers and qualified leads a high-quality thermos, leather portfolio or branded cap. Other booth visitors can receive lower-cost items, like a t-shirt, pen or magnet.
  4. Leave a Lasting Impression. To provide long-term promotional value, a giveaway must have your company name, logo and contact information on it. The goal of your giveaway is to continually advertise your company to your customers and prospects. Make it as easy as possible for them to get in touch with you when a need arises.

Trade show giveaways are an investment in your long-term success. When incorporated into your overall marketing strategy they can increase booth traffic, qualify leads and communicate your message long after the convention hall lights are turned off.