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One of the Best Parts of Tradeshows? SWAG!

March 5, 2010

Tracy Pool, a Monsanto employee, hands out SWAG to Commodity Classic attendees.

SWAG! Michael Scott, the co-manager of Dunder Mifflin Paper Company of The Office, said it best, “Stuff we all get. I basically decorated my condo for free with all of my swag.”

One of my favorite parts of working Commodity Classic as well as other trade shows is handing out free stuff to all the attendees. At most booths you are encouraged to sign up for a contest or newsletter and then you can receive some free things. Because there are so many booths and LOTS of stuff to collect, efficiency is key. Attendees bring labels with their name and address to paste on forms, some bring stamps with the same info, and some choose to use good old-fashioned handwriting.

Because so many of the attendees are from the midwest and likely have to get home by plane I had to ask, “how do you plan on getting all of your things home?” Many told me they bring a large suitcase or even an extra one just for their free goodies!

Modeling my newly acquired SWAG at Commodity Classic. Getting free things is all a part of the experience.

I decided to put myself in the shoes of these attendees and got some of my own free things. My favorite booth was the North Dakota Soybean Council booth. They were handing out chocolate covered soybeans (delicious) and hula hoops! The hoop was clever because not only was it fun for kids, but it was a way to measure the number of soybean plants per acre.  You can see my mad hula hoop skills on Twitter. Other favorites of mine and the attendees included a shirt that said, “Ask me why you’re not hungry, naked, or itchy”; and an Asgrow mug, which is a collectible for many attendees.

What are your favorite items to pick up? Do you have special methods to grabbing your goodies at trade shows?

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