I’ve talked about or rather joked about getting swag or schwag for LooseKeys before. Maybe some t-shirts, pint glasses or iPhone cases. But I’ve never bought any of these because I know they are really just a waste of money. None of my clients want a LooseKeys shirt, the only people that would wear one are myself, maybe some friends and the shirts probably wouldn’t be worn often. So in that case the whole point of swag as a marketing tool to remind clients about me is missed. A useful piece of swag would be something that serves as a constant reminder of a company; perhaps a coffee cup that could sit on someone’s desk everyday. If your logo is on that cup, the customer is continuously exposed to that logo in a neutral setting. Over time, hopefully they will grow favorable towards it and be more likely to call you rather than a competitor. But really I don’t see that happening. This isn’t the 1950’s; a list of competitors, their prices, ratings and recommendations are just a few clicks away online.
I think Mark Cuban said is perfectly “if you really think people are going to wear your branded polo when they’re out and about, you are mistaken and have no idea how to spend your money.”
How about using that money to train yourself on new technology or buying updated equipment. I bet a new computer or some extra RAM in that computer would help you a lot more then a box of umbrellas with your logo on them.
If you really want to have a giveaway for an event or conference, be creative and unique. Don’t go through the catalog and just find stuff to stick your logo on. If it’s not something unique that has that same creative spirit as your company and people who work there, then don’t do it just for the sake of doing it. It’s a waste of resources and time. Daily Planet ltd. has the right idea, they do swag and giveaways well. They often do hand screened t-shirts usually without the Daily Planet ltd. logo on them. The designs are always fantastic, showing off the talented creative team and giving clients something they are happy to wear.
The only thing I’ve given out for LooseKeys as of right now is stickers. I enjoy stickers and always had them growing up; my skateboard deck was covered in them at one point. So the stickers are a part of me and the culture at LooseKeys. They are inexpensive and easy to carry around. Hopefully the people I give them to have a place to stick ‘em near where they work. But if not I have a neat sticker that I’d be happy putting up someplace.
If you really feel like you want swag for your company then get creative and personal with your swag but if you can’t do that then maybe you should just spend your money on something better.