3 Ways To Boost Your Brand Awareness At A Tradeshow

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Your brand is unique and your message deserves to be heard. The problem? Your prospective client or business partner hears hundreds of other brand messages every day, so your message can easily fade into the background. This is magnified at tradeshows, expos, and fairs because of the different identities present.


We’ve all seen promo giveaways such as pens, sunglasses, and lanyards. Tote bags and flyers are also popular among conventions to carry notes and other merch picked up along the way. These are all great tools to advertise your identity and help carry your brand’s purpose.

Amplify Your Distinct Identity

People visit a booth at a tradeshow

Similar items are bound to happen. The same swag could be given out at the booth ten feet away—which is understandable—but how will your merch stand out if compared side by side?

With strategic efforts, your merch can avoid blending in among others and stay top of mind long after the event ends.

Here are three tips to boost memorability at the next trade show:

1. Implement creative designs. There are countless font styles, colors, and print methods. If there is flexibility, your logo can pop using metallic ink instead of standard ink. If brand guidelines don’t allow it, choosing a multi-colored version of your logo has a lasting impression, especially if it is accompanied by a theme or elevated promo item.

2. Elevate your item. The promo product industry has several categories to choose from, such as writing instruments, drinkware, and tech accessories. Instead of a paper business card, what if you opted for a business card that contained mints? How about a mini-sized, permanent marker (you know the brand) on a keychain? These items gravitate towards a lasting impression and separate themselves from similarity.

3. Utilize a theme. The start of a new year is a great time to plan destinations. How about a travel luggage tag with the tagline “Adventure Awaits”? And if your team wore “passport” name badges, even more memorable. This travel theme can also be used metaphorically for new business relationships, ushering excitement into a new business venture.

I Still Remember This Theme…

Women sit at a tradeshow booth
three women taking self portrait
Photo by Product School on Unsplash

Years ago at an expo, I came across a service provider for financial resources. The booth had cool LED lights with fresh snacks. Each team member wore a color-contrast polo that matched their logo and name badge. The logo was bold and seeing everything together felt energizing.

They were one of many service offerings available to visit that convention but I am sure they left one of the biggest impressions. Kudos to their team for utilizing merch like apparel, note cards, and promo swag to stay remembered after the event using this theme and their overall mission.

For example, a mini-sized football I received at the tradeshow from the “Hike Crew.” They were ready to hand off resources, educations, and services for the next financial “first down” towards my goals. I still throw around that football nowadays and see it often. The giveaways worked in tandem with their whole presence.

The Power Of Promotional Products

People at a tradeshow

What distinct promo design, elevated item, or theme have you seen? What brand message left a lasting impression on you with their promo merch? I’ve heard some great ideas and would love to hear what stood out to you!

P.S. There are many ways to engage your audience with promotional swag and I’d love to share them with you. Connect with me for tips on other ways to increase brand awareness to have your message top of mind.

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