Great Swag Ideas for Your Next Conference or Event

The main attraction of any live event is the content. But sometimes, it’s the little things that can make an event go the extra mile: the special surprises the coordinators throw in, the prizes companies hand out, the contests that take place. You know … the free swag! When event swag is really cool, it can really delight attendees at an event. So, to help out all the conference coordinators out there, we’ve collected examples of some of the best at events. We hope it helps inspire you to create awesome swag bags. m2622-mobile-device-charger-000

Mobile Device Charger Everyone and their mother is on their phone at conferences — all the time. Whether they’re tweeting, checking their email, or trying to meet up with other attendees, their phone is most likely going to be at 50% battery life by lunchtime. Give out mobile chargers, and every attendee will love you for it. Oh, and they’ll probably learn your name, too. Not only will they be pleasantly surprised when they see such practical and thoughtful swag, but having their phones charged will mean they’ll be able to engage even more throughout the conference, which is great for the conference coordinator. Finally, they’ll likely use that mobile charger beyond the last day of the conference. In other word, your logo will be exposed to them — and to others around them — long after the conference is over. That’s a beautiful thing.

sunglassesSeasonal Items Everyone likes unique gifts in their event swag bags. One way to make your swag bag stand out is by filling it with fun, seasonal items. Most companies don’t give out seasonal items because they’re looking for gifts that can be used year-round, but that fact alone makes these items even more special. If you’re hosting a summer conference or an event in a beach location, for example, then think about giving out items like beach towels, flip flops, and Frisbees. They cater to activities attendees can partake in during the event. Also, let’s think even another step ahead: When and where will attendees use your swag items? They’ll probably use beach items in public places where other people might see them and ask, “Where did you get that?” or “What company is that?” The result? Your company’s exposure will go far beyond the conference’s attendees. Technologo-VS_SKU_FO-43_(01)-2

Umbrellas  As many of you well know, unexpected rain can be one of the most frustrating annoyances at a conference — which is where free umbrellas can come in handy. Not only will it make their experience better, but it’ll also create buzz around how well prepared your company was for any given situation. Let’s face it, that’s just impressive. The great thing about umbrellas? You really can’t have too many of them. So you can be sure that your swag — with your logo on it, of course — will be used and seen long after the event ends.

Witty-T-Shirts-Statements-Men-T-Shirt-Quotes-Short-Sleeve-Teeshirt-For-man And last but not least … Tshirts. I know you have a million of them already, but if you’re giving away t-shirts with cool designs or sayings (as in, not just a t-shirt with your company name or logo on it), then chances are, a lot of people will pick one up — even if they’ve never heard of your brand before. Ask any event attendee and you learn that: witty T-shirts that you can’t buy from a store will ALWAYS be the top swag.

Twiddle Lapel Pin


Twiddle is a local band from Castleton, Vermont. And if you live in the Northeast, it’s highly likely that you know of them. Twiddle music is best described as improvisational jam-rock.  The band –which mixes reggae, funk, jazz, bluegrass and classical — was started by four students at Castleton State in southern Vermont in 2004. They reached success quickly in Castleton, toured the northeast, and produced a number of original songs, all before the members became upperclassmen.

The band seems to push  a philosophy of friendliness and positivity and the fan base has embraced it. In addition, they have very unique designs when it comes to their swag, which they sell at the concerts and festivals they play. Which leads us to the ‘Franken Foot’ pin project. Knowing that this was no ordinary band, we knew  that this would be no ordinary pin order.  But we were up for the challenge. Our staff member Brent Jarvis was the contact for Twiddle on the implementation of their pin. The pin itself is was very stylized and unique (see picture above). He had this to say about the process:

 “Our hard enamel lapel pins, also known as Cloisonné pins or epola pins, are some of our highest quality and most popular pins.   For this particular design, a special glow in the dark enamel was used as the outlines of the ‘monster’ or ‘Franken Foote if you’re familiar with band Twiddle.  After holding in the direct sunlight outside for about 30 seconds, ttwiddle-652x367he pin was taken into a dark room and photographed to show it’s luminosity.   A very eye catching and different approach to pins!”

These pins are, indeed, eyecatching. According to their fan base – who call themselves Twidiots – they are certainly on board when it comes to buying up fun swag. Because Twiddle makes the effort to stay fresh  with their designs and merchandise,  their pins and hats are highly sought after at festivals.

Needless to say, it was an enjoyable and fun project for us to be involved in. We are always up for the challenge of creativity and helping our clients realize the full potential of a lapel pin. If you have a fun project or an idea or design you’d like to kick up a creative notch. Let us know! We’re here to help.