Using Promotional Products to Excel at Your Next Trade Show

It’s that time of year when we all dust down the exhibition stands and commence our calendar of trade shows and events.

Trade shows can be a brilliant way to expose your brand to a wide, new audience, boost your company profile and set up more personal relationships with the people you want to attract. However, with competitors close-by and distractions quickly diverting the crowd’s attention elsewhere, you’ll need something extra up your sleeve to set you apart and leave a positive lasting impression.

This is where promotional products come in; not only can they initially attract the interests of prospects and passers-by, they can present key information about your offerings and brand in an engaging and memorable way.

When planning for your next trade show, promotional products should be an integral part of your strategy, but you’ll need to ensure that they will be relevant and consistent with your whole display, as well as the services and values you are aiming to promote:

  • Will the product work cohesively and reflect your company image and goals?
  • Will the item appeal to your target audience?
  • How well can you place your key contact details and your message on it?
  • Is it unique?
  • Will its production and delivery fit in with your time and budget requirements?

Regardless of the item, whether a promotional pen, bag, logoed earphones or digital device, your promotional product will be most effective if it can be used by prospects beyond the trade show. Choose an item and design that will catch the eye of people walking past your booth, and use your item to help people spread the word about your brand!

Pre-event promotion

Once you’ve decided on your promotional product, it’s time to get talking about it. Ahead of the trade show you might want to promote that you’ll be offering promotional gifts through your website, social media or other marketing channels. For high-priority clients, you could also send a personalised message informing them of the event and that you’ll be offering them a special promotional item. Make sure to give them your booth number and where you will be located, to make it easier for them to find you amongst the crowd. Whatever you do, it’s a good idea to generate excitement about your booth beforehand to maximise your brand exposure.

Make your booth stand out

It’s no use having a killer promotional product if your booth display is uninspiring and won’t attract passers-by. Display booths are no longer just a stand with your logo on it, you’ll need to think carefully about colour, designs, lighting, signage and the overall feel of you booth. Your booth is an ultimate way to showcase your expertise and what you stand for, and will need to make prospects feel both comfortable and exclusive. Therefore, be sure to fill your booth with enough friendly, professional staff to answer anyone’s questions and engage with trade show attendees. Think about including ways in which people can find out more about your company, such as brochures, small visual cards or videos – everyone processes information differently, so this way you’ll ensure that you’re reaching the most prospects. And remember, any messaging needs to be prominent, clear and easy to see from afar, in every direction.


Your giveaways

Your promotional items will need to be displayed well, dispersed in different parts of your booth, so that they can attract the attention of all passers-by. However, having your promotional products on hand for anyone to take may not provide you with the best ROI. Your items will be more valuable if they’re more exclusive or personalised. Here are some of the ways you can achieve this:

  • Make prospects fill out a form or questionnaire with their contact details before you give them their product. This is a great way to increase your marketing mailing lists or find out key customer data.
  • You could only hand out your promotional products to the attendees who you speak with, or potential customers. Making your gift more individual will show that you appreciate their time and it’ll be more likely to leave them with a lasting impression of your company.
  • Incorporate your promotional merchandise into prizes for a contest, raffle or trade show promotion. Again, your visitors entering into a competition will give you an opportunity to collect their details or give your brand better exposure. Equally, a themed competition can quickly engage the interest of the crowd in a busy trade show area and make your promotional giveaways stand out.

For any advice on promotional merchandise for your next trade show, or to see our range of custom promotional products, please call us on 01256 352415, or email


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