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5 Simple Rules for Great Trade Show Giveaways

Trade show giveaways are one of the most lucrative marketing techniques you can utilise at an event, and choosing the right exhibition giveaways can play a key role in engaging your trade show customers.

The key to selecting the right giveaway for your next event lies in choosing items that connect with your audience whilst supporting your overall marketing strategy. Certain items will make more of an impression than others. Useful giveaways will be kept for much longer than ones that have no relevance or much use – so think beyond the usual pens and memory sticks.

Read on for some simple rules which ensure that your trade show giveaways are as successful as possible, as well as some giveaway ideas.

Size Matters

When choosing what you’re going to give away at your next exhibition, you need to think small and light. Although you may assume that something big and bold will attract more attention, having something small and light will actually be more valuable to you and to your audience.

It’s important to remember that show visitors will need to carry your giveaway for the remainder of the exhibition or event, so something easy to carry is key.

So, by choosing an item that’s easily portable, you can ensure that the product will not be discarded and can be easily used. For example, offering a giveaway mobile accessory like a trendy PopSocket or a smartphone wallet means that potential customers can put it straight on their phone.

Compare that to giant inflatable animals or large promotional books, which may get left behind when people get tired of carrying them around.

Offer useful giveaways – think beyond the pen!

Pens and key rings are the typical giveaway items for trade shows. You should give away something useful but interesting, and different from what everyone else will be giving away. Some useful giveaway ideas include things like:

  • Travel mugs
  • Reusable water bottles
  • Solar phone chargers
  • Branded lip balms

All of these attract attention and work to promote your brand –  hopefully not just be thrown in a pen pot in someone’s home or office!

No-one said that giveaways have to be physical – offering a digital download, such as a movie, e-book or album, will capture peoples’ attention, while assuring that it won’t be lost.

Something a little different

Think outside the box. Food and drink are other excellent trade show giveaways. Unusual snacks and treats, such as frozen yogurt, smoothies or popcorn, always attract visitors and create excitement around your brand. It encourages longer conversations and gives your sales team a great opportunity to demonstrate your products to your visitor while they enjoy a frozen yogurt or a smoothie on your stand.

If you can, package your food or drink in in a way that will allow you to have your logo and contact details on.


Keep it Relevant

Your trade show giveaway items must be intriguing – either unique like some of the items we’ve mentioned in this article or something useful that will help you connect more strongly with potential leads. The more relevant the product is to your business, the better.

By keeping your giveaways relevant to your company, your branding will become more efficient and effective, and you can potentially give your clients the opportunity to sample your product before they invest.

If you’re a catering company, hand out small samples of your food in branded containers. If you print books, give out branded bookmarks. The possibilities are endless, and by keeping giveaways relevant to your business, you will be able to promote your brand even more effectively.

Consider your brand

Whatever it is you are offering as a trade show giveaway, it should always reflect your brand. For example, the packaging should be in line with your brand guidelines by using your brand colours, fonts and images.

You may want to consider if the giveaway reflects your business ideologies. If, like us, you consider sustainability a core value and are looking to make your stand as eco-friendly as possible, you should look at using environmentally friendly items and ensure, where possible, they can be recycled.


Giveaways are a great way to market your business at a trade show or exhibition, and by following these rules you can ensure that your marketing is as successful as possible. If you need advice on how to engage with customers and attract visitors to your stand at your next exhibition, Skyline Whitespace can help. For more information, contact us today.