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Trade Show Giveaways Guide

The Best Gift Ideas and Promotional Merchandise to Make an Impression for Your Business

October is traditionally the busiest month for trade shows in the United States, and 2021 will be no exception. While building business-to-business relationships virtually is not impossible, it is certainly a more difficult task than having the opportunity to do so in person. With many of 2020’s restrictions on crowded spaces now lifted, companies are taking advantage of the opportunity to directly network and grow alongside each other once again.

For business owners and decision makers that plan on attending these trade shows in the near and distant future, having the right set of materials to make an impression will be critical to achieving whatever goals the company has for the event. Aside from constructing a booth that caters to audience interests, it is critical that companies provide their prospective clients and business partners with a take-home gift or giveaway that promotes brand awareness and a professional image.


There is no shortage of potential branded merchandise to choose from, but in this guide, DiscountMugs will break down the items we believe work as the most effective giveaways for any trade show. Regardless of what industry your company may be in, these gifts have the greatest likelihood of their recipients getting regular use out of them, which increases the brand’s perceived quality as well as its quantity of impressions.


Prominent Giveaways


Small giveaways are easy to buy in bulk and feature many customization options, but some people may find them easy to lose or not premium enough in communicating a company’s level of quality. For businesses seeking an impression through a giveaway that caters to aesthetic and utility, DiscountMugs recommends the following promotional products at trade shows:


Grocery Bags


Visitors to trade shows often end up having several business cards and “swag” items afterwards, but frequently forget a bag with which to take home all of their new gifts. There are many types of bags to choose from when selecting the right one to offer at a trade show, but businesses seeking a combination of quality and potential for sustained use should primarily consider custom grocery bags.


Grocery bags are environmentally-conscious promotional items that provide convenience for their recipients while removing their need for excessive paper and plastic bags on shopping trips. A company that provides its booth patrons with a high quality bag they can use for the remainder of the trade show will have much greater odds of their brand receiving future impressions from additional uses of the bags in other places.


Grocery bags are a custom specialty of DiscountMugs, with designs available in eight different materials and over 15 bold colors. These bags are among the finest promotional products available on our site for the purpose of displaying a brand’s logo in prominent fashion.


Ceramic Mugs


One of the signature products offered by DiscountMugs, complimentary ceramic mugs are a common sight at booths of many trade shows. With so many business people relying on morning coffee to kick-start their commute, many caffeine enthusiasts will keep a collection of ceramic mugs available to avoid having to wash the same one or few for regular use. Thus, this trade show gift is effective for drawing in good candidates for networking relationships.


Ceramic mugs are not only a practical gift for potential clients, but also one that supports the face of a logo at a crucial and memorable moment of every user’s day. When preparing morning coffee and retrieving a mug — even if the mug is not chosen — the face will display a company’s logo prominently. This creates an opportunity for everyday brand visibility, which ultimately leads to better overall recognition from and resonance with audiences.


DiscountMugs has custom ceramic mugs available in 15 different colors with over 85 unique styles that will illustrate any business’ logo brilliantly. Our suite of custom mugware ranges from traditional latte mugs to two-tone bistro mugs, tea cups, and even beerware such as pilsner glasses and tankards.


USB Flash Drives


Flash drives are an extremely practical trade show giveaway option in today’s digital business world. While cloud services have made sharing files over the Internet much easier than the practice used to be, flash drives — particularly those fitted for keychains — still present a local transfer method with instant unrivaled convenience.


Most people are not aware they are in need of a flash drive until the moment arises, and they can be slightly inconvenient to obtain depending on the time of day. People will be grateful to receive a complimentary item that may help them out of a jam when experiencing technical difficulties or other computer issues.


DiscountMugs offers over 50 different styles of flash drives in over a dozen colors and featuring styles of material including metal, plastic, and vinyl. Each comes with a surface that can illustrate a logo or other related business graphic prominent every time a user plugs in.


Small Giveaways


These gifts work well for trade shows because they all feature highly-visible logos to the recipient and serve a purpose in everyday lives — whether to a businessperson or a human being in general. These gifts can be purchased in quantities with tiered discounts, which ensures any business will have enough for each attendee and prospective client at its booth.


Travel Mugs and Water Bottles


For an event that requires participants to be mobile, an on-the-go beverage vessel will be a welcome sight to trade show visitors roaming from booth to booth. A high quality custom travel mug or water bottle presents a great standout solution as an offering to potential business partners encountered through networking.


Though utilized in different contexts, travel mugs and water bottles each provide great opportunities for a brand to make its logo noticed during functional use. Travel mugs such as stainless steel tumblers are frequently appreciated for storing hot beverages in cold temperatures, while water bottles built for regular use can make frequent appearances in a personal workout routine or at a gym. Trade show guests with active lifestyles will greatly appreciate these complimentary gifts when visiting the booth of any company.


As the leading online provider of custom drinkware, DiscountMugs’ has a vast suite of offerings for both travel mugs and water bottles. Our personalized travel mugs are available in acrylic, plastic, or stainless steel materials across over 15 unique colors and with varying other key features such as handle and weight. Meanwhile, custom water bottles are available in over 300 various designs that all encourage regular use and can prominently support a business’ logo.


Stress Balls


Even in the work-from-home era, professional stress has not gone away for any business or its employees. Many professionals that sit at desks for extended periods find brief solace or relief in the form of a squeezable stress ball. However, because consumers do not tend to be in moments of stress when shopping, many often overlook their desire for such an object until they actually want it at work.


Potential clients and business customers will jump at the chance to take home a free stress ball that they will thank themselves for picking up later on. In moments of workplace tension or creative frustration, users of the stress ball will notice the company logo and be grateful they received a complimentary outlet for their temporary emotions.


DiscountMugs’ assortment of custom stress balls includes shapes and designs in over 15 different colors. In addition to classic spheres, we also offer animals, food, outer space, sports, and many other shapes available to fit any industry or business. Regardless of choice, each stress toy comes with placement of a company logo that will stand out whether on a desk or in use.


Hand Sanitizer / PPE


With public health as a central concern among many in the business world even after 2020, convenient PPE solutions continue to remain in demand among the general public. Offering complimentary hand sanitizer and other PPE materials at a trade show booth is not only a great way to make brand impressions, but also encourages extended interaction by promoting a healthy and safe environment.


Travel-size items such as personal sanitizer pens are always welcome, but there are more premium options for PPE materials as well. Companies looking to stand out with their branded PPE may consider offering faceshields to their booth’s visitors. Businesses in industries that often utilize protective eyewear may consider offering safety glasses or goggles in tandem with face masks.


At DiscountMugs, we offer over 75 different styles of hand sanitizer and related accessories in quantities ranging from .27 oz each up to gallon-sized jugs. These sanitizer pens — as well as our assortment of masks and other PPE products — can all support a company logo or branding message on their face while offering convenient protection in crowded situations.


Order Your Trade Show Giveaways from DiscountMugs Today


Call 800-579-7152 to get started or send us an email if you have any questions related to customer service, artwork, or placing large orders.

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