How Great Swag Supports Your Marketing Strategy

Tips
11 min read
Nehad Zein
Nehad Zein
Guest Writer

Published: June 16, 2021

Swag isn’t often incorporated into marketing strategies. But that’s actually a secret – many companies have used swag as part of their marketing strategy to great success.

Keep reading for a primer on using swag for marketing. These are just a few scenarios where branded swag can be leveraged to market your phenomenal brand!

▶  SKIP AHEAD 🚀

How to Use Swag as a Marketing Strategy and Maximize Your ROI

Tip #1. Get Free Attention on the Internet

Tip #2. Win with Influencer Swag

Tip #3. Promote Your Brand on Social Media

Tip #4. Add a Physical Element to Your Virtual Event 

[Swag Ideas] The 4 Types of Swag for Your Marketing Strategy


How to Use Swag as a Marketing Strategy and Maximize Your ROI

Tip #1. Get Free Attention on the Internet

Swag is an excellent brand ambassador. If you’ve ever come across social media posts that feature swag someone received, you know what we’re talking about. Yes, you can make it happen too, and no, it’s not difficult to achieve. All you need to do is hand out high-quality, functional swag. It could be to your customers, partners or employees. They’re going to be rooting for your brand all over the internet in no time. Hand out swag periodically to your employees for bonus brownie points.

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Tip #2. Win with Influencer Swag

The influencer culture is a fairly recent phenomenon. Most brands hand out their products to influencers and ask them to do a paid review/ad. But companies that sell expensive products/services may not necessarily want to (nor should they) go this route. If you’re such a brand, sending out branded swag might be a better idea. This strategy can work even if you aren’t selling expensive products. A lot of automakers, for example, hand out scale models and other automotive related custom swag to journalists and bloggers that attend their events. It’s a simple yet successful strategy.

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Tip #3. Promote Your Brand on Social Media

Giveaways have become an incredibly common practice for brands and personalities looking to grow their digital presence. And it’s because they simply work. Everybody likes free stuff and it leads to forced exposure, ultimately growing attention towards your brand. Obviously, most brands simply give away their products to a few winners. But if you can’t do that for some reason, and we’ve got an argument for why you shouldn’t, then custom branded swag is your best bet. Here’s why this’ll work.

  • Everybody gives out products. By giving out branded merch, you stand out.
  • Your real buyers won’t feel like they got unlucky. Nobody likes hearing that someone got for free what they paid for. Using swag in giveaways eliminates this problem.
  • The winner feels extra lucky. This means more potential traction for your giveaway because you’re giving away something truly unique and not something anybody can just buy.

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Tip #4. Add a Physical Element to Your Virtual Event 

Event swag is the holy grail of marketing swag. This is where it all started. Remember those days you visited a company conference and went home with a branded bag containing at the bare minimum a pen, notepad and some collateral? Well yeah, it’s all virtual now. But that doesn’t mean swag has left the party. In fact, you now have room to innovate. The possibilities are endless, and we’ve gotten a gazillion swag permutations, designed to fit any virtual event perfectly.

Plus, you can combine any of the use cases mentioned above in tandem with your event to create a full-fledged event-marketing strategy. It’s innovative, effective, and exciting for everyone involved. And considering how virtual events are harder to feel a part of when compared to traditional ones, branded swag is a must do. It’ll help your attendees feel more involved and make the entire virtual event a little less virtual. Besides, swag can help you achieve your events goals easier and faster. And that’s something you definitely want. If you’re hosting any event, especially in present times, swag is your best friend.

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The 4 Types of Swag for Your Marketing Strategy

#1. Swag That Drives Attention

🚀 FIRST CLASS SWAG

Biodegradable Packaging

Want to hit 2 birds with one stone? The noissue mailer is just what you need. It’s a plant-based mailer bag to send out your wonderful swag items in. It’s perfect if you’re trying to cultivate a sustainable-first culture and is guaranteed to let your audience know that you’re taking sustainability seriously. Plus, when you consider all the positive attention it can generate, it’s three birds with one stone. 



🚀 FIRST CLASS SWAG

Poster Swag

Okay, we love this one because you can get super creative with it. Posters are a great gift for any occasion and make for superb Instagrammable content, especially if someone you gift it to includes it in their desk moodboards. You can gift it as part of onboarding, events, client swag or even for employee appreciation. And if you get it to look cool enough, they might just never take it off their wall. That’s free marketing for a long long time. 



🚀 FIRST CLASS SWAG

Small Bags

If you’ve got a lot of younger employees, slings and waist bags are a great swag gift. They’re a great way to protect personal valuables when partying, and with all the social media content coming from these parties, your bags are sure to make a brilliant cameo. These high-quality, branded bags are a gift anyone will appreciate and will definitely drive some envious attention towards your brand. 



🚀 FIRST CLASS SWAG

Portable Can Cooler

This branded portable bottle cooler is a great functional swag gift for anybody on your team. You can fit a 12 oz. can, a bottle or you can pour your coffee or ice-cold drink and use it as a tumbler. Features a two piece lid – screw-on black ring to hold your can or bottle, or drop in the clear plastic lid for an on-the-go tumbler with just a snap! Versatile? Yes. Attention grabbing? You bet!



🚀 FIRST IN CLASS SWAG

Bumper stickers

Bumper stickers are great advertising. They also let the receiver feel a part of your brand and celebrate it with the rest of the world. You can really get creative with these and even use different stickers for different purposes. Employee only car parking is one example. Besides, if they look cool enough, fans of your brand are going to be happy to slap it on their bumpers too. Bumper stickers have always been a great way to show how much you love a brand.



#2. Influencer Swag Options

🚀 FIRST CLASS SWAG

Edible Swag and Custom Branded Packaging

Food is an established swag gift. It’s also an influencer swag favourite. Few other gifts share the emotional appeal that comes with food and beverages. Package it in some branded boxes for an amazing swag experience and then watch the online exposure roll in. Influencers love gifts like these and they’ll be very excited to promote all the yummy goodies you’ve sent them.



🚀 FIRST CLASS SWAG

Content Creation Swag

What’s a better strategy than gifting swag to a huge influencer? Catching the micro-influencer. Choose a few whom you think have great potential and give them some serious gear that’ll help them create content. We’re talking stuff like a DJI Mavic drone, professional lights, and other camera peripherals. You won’t be simply doing a transaction with an influencer here, you’ll be creating brand ambassadors that vouch for your brand for years to come. 



🚀 FIRST CLASS SWAG

Reusable glass water bottle

Influencers are huge fans of anything aesthetic and this one fits the bill. It’s made of glass, meaning it ages better and lasts longer than plastic counterparts. The bottle also has the entire minimalist, pastel thing going on, which influencers just love. Plus, your logo is going to look gorgeous when printed on this bottle. 



🚀 FIRST CLASS SWAG

Pet Swag

Pets are adorable. Pet swag can make them even more adorable. This doggies bandana for example is a great swag gift for influencers who also feature their pets online. This swag item achieves multiple goals. It shows your brand is open-minded, relaxed and has a great personality. Because let’s face it, pets add a lot to our lives and acknowledging this can only work for you. Here’s a Swagup x Pets feature.



#3. Best Giveaway Swag

🚀 FIRST CLASS SWAG

Custom knit socks

If you haven’t started giving out socks as swag yet, you’re missing out! Socks are incredibly comfortable, come in a huge variety and literally everybody uses them. These custom knit socks are the perfect cozy companion to a night beside the fireplace and your logo’s gonna look great on it. You can also get creative with the packaging to really elevate the swag experience.



🚀 FIRST CLASS SWAG

Tried-and-true Swag Basics

Think apparel, pins/stickers, custom branded totes, caps/hats. Because sometimes, going the basic route is your best bet. There’s a lot of advantages to this approach. Firstly, most basic swag have quick turnaround times. Also, you don’t have to put in as much effort into choosing and creating designs. There’s plenty of ready-made options available, just waiting to feature your logo. And they’re basics because they work. You can’t really go wrong with this. That might just be the biggest advantage here.



🚀 FIRST CLASS SWAG

Tech Peripherals

A huge part of our lives today are led digitally. Our devices dictate our productivity, leisure and even accessibility to the rest of the world. And quality tech items will soon become swag basics. We’re talking earphones, charging cables, portable storage devices and any little gadget that can make our technological lives easier and more interesting. We’re all heavily invested into tech. It’s another solid option for functional swag that anybody will appreciate. 



🚀 FIRST CLASS SWAG

Hobby Swag

If you’re looking to achieve multiple goals with a swag giveaway, going niche is your best bet. If you’re a leisure/adventure brand for example, travel accessories such as backpacks and gadgets like scooters can make for great branded swag. Similarly, if you’re a wine brand, you could give out branded golf-bags. This is a great way to tell your audience that you understand them and their unique needs. 



#4. Amazing Virtual Event Swag

🚀 FIRST CLASS SWAG

Virtual Event Peripherals and Accessories

Events have gone virtual and we’re dealing with the conveniences and nuances of enjoying them from behind our screens. Using thoughtful event swag here can immediately set you apart. You can hand out stuff like blue light blocking glasses, VR viewers and sticky notes to your attendees while helping your speakers record better with ring lights, microphone checkers and even a charging station. 



🚀 FIRST CLASS SWAG

Custom Branded Brochures and Booklets

If you’re not handing out event brochures, you’re doing events wrong. Brochures and pamphlets help attendees and participants get a holistic idea of what your event entails and also helps people figure out what’s happening if they enter your event in between. You can also get quite creative here with video brochures for high-profile guests and AR/VR kits that complement a digital brochure accessible through our smartphones.  



🚀 FIRST CLASS SWAG

Notebook and Pen Combo

The notebook and pen combo is the mother of all swag. Swag started with events and the notebook and pen are essentially what’s brought us here. Unsurprisingly, most people still enjoy using the two to jot down interesting tidbits they come across during an event. Besides, they’re a staple piece of swag that can be wonderfully customised to reflect your branding. Apart from using them for events, we’d also recommend you keep a bunch of these at the office and send out a few copies to your team periodically. Little things like these always give a lovely impression.



🚀 FIRST CLASS SWAG

Custom Company Virtual Backgrounds

This isn’t a swag item per say but is nonetheless an excellent way to boost your event. Have your design team create custom branded backgrounds for each of the speakers. Take it up a notch higher by using designs that reflect the expertise of the person talking. You can also provide a downloadable background to attendees to use as backgrounds for their own Zoom calls, making it a phenomenal piece of digital swag. All the branding will get you some much-deserved attention whilst also showcasing how innovative you are 😉

Swag is great for marketing!

We’ve covered four brilliant ways to use swag in your marketing strategy and featured some excellent swag to go along with each one. Now there’s absolutely no excuse to not leverage swag in your marketing strategy.  Elevate your brand today – get started on the pack builder.

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