Blog #6: The 31 Best Conference Gift & Swag Ideas for 2022

After a brief hiatus, conferences are back in full swing—and with them the swag and gifts that make them so much fun to attend (in addition to the valuable networking connections and knowledge swapping of course!). As 2022 heats up, we’re seeing a lot of old favorites on the floor and some more future-focused ideas too.

So, drum roll please…here are the hot conference gift and swag ideas for 2022. If you’re looking to wow attendees with useful and meaningful giveaways, see which ones best fit your brand right now. There’s plenty to choose from, and they cross different categories, but most of them fit into these groups:

Ok, time to hit the conference floor:

Related: The Five Print Pieces You Need for Conferences and Trade Shows 

Gettin’ Techy with It

Endlessly useful and also exciting, tech products are some of the darlings of the conference industry, no matter what brand you’re promoting. These items have plenty of space to advertise your brand, and they are warmly welcomed by attendees and their families alike. Sure to garner an important space in their home, car, or office, you’ll get a lot of bang for your buck. Some of the most popular tech items are:

  • Power banks and chargers: Great for when you’re on the go, these gadgets always get snapped up!
  • Cable quack and Tech tacos: These keep your electronics tidy and your company top of mind.
  • LED rings: Who doesn’t want to look better on camera? Not everyone thinks to get these for themselves, so they are a great giveaway.
  • Popsocket: This little piece of advertising makes your phone much more useful.
  • Speakers: People love Bluetooth speakers that they can take anywhere, and the look is oh so cool.
  • Earbuds: Something everyone cannot have enough of.
  • Tile mates: These newer items help you keep track of keys and more, with a spot for branding that you won’t forget.

Tried and True Office Supplies

As some workers divide their time between home and on-site offices, they need more office supplies than ever. Plus, conferences give them a chance to restock on items they’ve been using up.

  • Pens: These workhorses are a welcome gift. People love the feel of a pen, and they’re incredibly helpful to have on hand. With every style and color imaginable (including eco-designs), they’re a fresh way to make an impact.
  • Nice notebooks with leather or cloth covers: People always love notebooks, even when they’re digit-fiends. They’re especially useful for the bustling conference, where jotting down notes comes in handy. And giftees hang on to them for years, giving you many good and lasting impressions.
  • Plant with planter: As many people bounce between home and on-site office, it’s nice to have some greenery in both. Here’s a pretty pot with a plant that you can give to add some fun décor and bring a bit of the outdoors in. It’s also an eco-friendly thought that really counts.

Proven Winners that Last a Long Time

Some of these items have been around the block and they return to conferences again and again since they’re so popular. You can count on these to last a long time and make an impact.

  • Bags: While bags are great for toting swag and other gifts, their value goes far beyond that. They’ll be used for trips, errands, commutes, and more, showcasing your branding every time.
  • Shirts: Walking advertisements. Enough said.
  • Sweatshirts: See above, with longer sleeves (generally) and possibly a hood.
  • Stickers: Stickers have made a comeback in recent years. These cost savers are great to plaster on water bottles, notebooks, laptops, tablets, and more. Stickers are a little bit of art that brightens everyone’s day—with your message on it. 
  • Self-heating mug: One of the latest cool giveaways around, this self-heating mug is drinkware and cookware in one, for a mess-free, easy way to stay warm and toasty.
  • Mug with cork bottom: An ingenious twist that avoids coffee stains. Your brand will look uber innovative on this drinkware.
  • Tumblers: These higher-end gifts are great for the office or the home office. There’s plenty of space to plaster your logo too.
  • Wine glasses: As more of us congregate outside, wine glasses have become hugely popular, with cool silicone sleeves to protect their beautiful glass. Go to their next party with this giveaway!
  • Bottle openers: Who couldn’t use a cleverly designed bottle opener?

Related: Conference Signage Organization Made Easy 

Useful for the Conference

Sometimes attendees just need something that will work for the weekend. It can be used after the conference too, but current utility makes it even more valuable.

  • Umbrellas: This is perennially a popular item. It’s always great to have a nice umbrella on hand, and it features plenty of space for your logo.
  • Popl Digital Business Card: It’s a new touchless way to make new acquaintances. Just point your phone at their business card and it will collect their contact info.
  • Sunglasses: Like umbrellas (but the opposite), these are practical and fashionable.
  • Sunscreen: It’s something almost everyone forgets to pack, so if you provide it at the conference, not only will they use it, but they will thank you!
  • Water: This will get used! Whether at the conference, on the way home, or at home, this gift will serve its purpose and your logo.
  • Snacks: Just like water, snacks likely disappear quickly, but not without garnering impressions and goodwill.
  • Metal Straws: This eco-conscious option is a great way to stay relevant. They’re useful for the conference and easy to pack and bring home, where they’ll be used for years to come.
  • Toiletries: They’re bound to forget a toothbrush, toothpaste, or bar of soap. Save them the trouble and provide it for them, neatly printed with your logo. This one travels!
  • Toiletry bag: To corral all your necessities, a toiletry bag does the trick. And it has space for your messaging too.

Bringing the Wow Factor

Then there’s the table where everyone’s congregating. It has a high-tech display or a cool VR experience. When you really want to make a lasting impact, the Wow Factor will not disappoint.
Giveaways for getting leads: One recent conference featured a high-end cabinet with their whiskey; if you dropped off your business card you were in the raffle. Try this with gift cards, nicer items like outdoor fire pits, high-end branded gifts, or anything that resonates with your customers. They will be eager to give you their information for a chance to win!

You’d be amazed at how many lifetime impressions [hint, it’s thousands] many of these items will get you. Not only are the best conference swag ideas fun, but they’re also incredibly effective at marketing your product and generating goodwill.

We have many more conference gift and swag ideas, and many ideas for captivating tradeshow signage as well. Talk to our promotional product team experts for the ones you didn’t even know you loved yet. As conference junkies, we can help you find the swag and gifts that will work best for your business.

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