Advertising & Marketing

The Dos and Don’ts of Ordering Trade Show Giveaways

Ready to wow your audience at your next trade show? Giveaways are an amazing tool that can draw customers to your displays and ensure a lasting impression long after the event ends. However, when it comes time to order those stylish giveaways, it’s important that you take the appropriate steps to ensure maximum ROI at your trade show stand. Need some help? Here is our essential list of dos and don’ts for ordering trade show giveaways. 

The Don’ts 

1. Don’t Order Too Few Items 

When businesses order something new for the first time, they often make the mistake of making their order too small. While it is natural to be nervous about trying a new form of advertising, making your orders too small can waste both money and valuable marketing time. If you order a custom pen that your customers love, having too little to distribute properly can result in a missed opportunity as potential customers are turned away. 

However, if you order too many new custom products and you have leftovers, these products won’t go to waste. You can repurpose them as employee appreciation gifts, marketing prizes for later campaigns or something to offer new visitors to your business. Therefore, it’s better to order too many products than too few. 

2. Don’t Wait Until the Last Minute 

4-Month Standard Desk Calendar 

No matter what you’re ordering, the best trade show giveaways should be ordered well in advance. This will ensure you’re prepared in the event of delivery delays (especially during busy periods) and give you time to go back and make changes if necessary.  

Ordering at the last minute can also make it difficult to ensure your products are distributed at relevant times. For example, you don’t want to wait until 1st January to pass out your branded calendars. Calendars have extra months from the previous year for a reason; by the time the new year comes, everyone has their new calendars. 

3. Don’t Order Without a Distribution Plan 

Large Gift paper bag 90 g/m² with Full Colour Print 

So, you’ve ordered hundreds of new custom keyrings, and you ordered them well in advance for your peak sales season. But how will you distribute them? Presentation is everything, especially when you’re distributing at a trade show. Want to learn more about the power of packaging and accessories to accompany your promotional products? Check out our blog post on promotional products packaging! If you really want to impress potential customers and clients, make sure you have a plan for your products. 

One example of this would be to group products together into take-home gift bags, or attach your custom pens to a tin of tasteful sweets. When you plan out your distribution in advance, you’re able to better choose the branded trade show giveaways that will best represent your company the way you want them to. 

The Dos 

1. Order with a Strategy 

The first step anyone should take when planning an order of promotional products is to identify your goals and needs. How many products do you anticipate you’ll need? What is the estimated demand? What is your plan for any excess products? Will this be a one-time order or something you’ll order regularly? 

When you know what your needs are, you can be more strategic with your orders. For example, you can save a lot of money by ordering in bulk. If you plan to make regular orders, then making large orders now will ensure you’re well-stocked for the future, especially if the items are non-perishable. However, if you have limited storage space, you’ll want to be careful not to order more products than you can handle. 

2. Remember Your Audience 

Who are you ordering for, and what would catch their interest? Don’t just order the most popular pen without evaluating your audience. Check out our latest blog on how to find your target audience

For example, while an accountancy firm might benefit most from our rose gold pens, a children’s toy company may find greater marketing success with our more colourful Colourama Pens

You should also consider how you’re trying to reach your audience when you make your selection. Are you hoping to offer something that will stick around in plain sight for a long time, like a custom magnet? Or do you want to associate your brand with accessories linked to your industry, like a keyring for a car repair company? Whatever you customise, make sure you’re aware of your audience and what your giveaway is communicating. 

3. Order from a Trusted Company 

There are hundreds of custom product sites online, but not all of them offer the same quality and purchase security as others. When choosing the best company to create your branded merchandise, make sure you’re doing your due diligence to find a reputable company that backs their products with quality guarantees. For example, our One-Year Guarantee ensures that if your order is not produced exactly as you approved it, you can simply reach out to our Customer Care Team and we’ll make it right. 

You’ll also want to order from companies that use reputable brands as opposed to cheap knock-off versions. For example, our company offers time-tested brands such as BIC®, Parker, Waterman, and more! We also offer our own line of custom pens and other products which have been a great success for many small businesses. 

Ready to order your own promotional products? These dos and don’ts will help make sure you’re shopping smart for any event. Head on over to our site to find the perfect trade show giveaways, or keep reading our latest articles for more tips from our experts to help you promote your brand ahead of the competition. Check out our latest blog on How to make your brand stand out at trade fairs


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