Conference Gifts
25th Feb 2022

Many of us can’t resist a good freebie, even if it’s something we would never buy ourselves. Unfortunately, many of these gifts that are distributed at conferences, find their home at the back of our closets (with others from previous events) or eventually in the bin. We can safely say that these kinds of novelty gifts don’t serve their intended purpose for both you and your attendees. Conference gifts need to have a purpose after an event that your attendees will want to use repeatedly. This not only gives your event that long lasting impression, but opportunities for your attendees to be brand ambassadors.

Although reusable coffee mugs and branded pens do get used, it’s never something that attendees get excited about and is almost an expectation that they will receive these types of gifts. We’d like to share our top tips on conference gifting ideas that will be sure to get your attendees talking about your event log after it has ended.

Make it too good to throw away

Just how many water bottles, coffee mugs, caps, generic goodie bags and pens does anyone need? Most of these items don’t really make it all the way home and if they do, they’re often thrown into that drawer we all have at home – you know, the one with all the other junk we’ve collected over the years, but won’t throw away because we might just need an old Nokia 3310 charger again. Whether it’s a conference bag or any other item, ask yourself. How would you feel receiving this as a conference gift? If the answer isn’t “excited”, then it’s probably best not to do anything at all. It’s ultimately money down the drain if you’re doing it just for the sake of giving your attendees a giveaway to say thanks for attending your event.

Just imagine how it could increase brand’s image and the impact it would have on your event and subsequently the desire to attend future events, if the attendees loved your gifts and considered them unique, exclusive, and valuable?

Sustainability is no longer a buzz word

More so than ever, people are becoming sustainably responsible and more aware of how their actions have an effect on our environment, and will most likely choose a sustainable product over the traditional option. An event bag that’s made from recycled materials is more likely to generate interest and chatter after your event than one that’s been mass-produced in China. Going with a sustainable option, aligns your brand with global trends, as well as expressing your brand’s values and authenticity.

Black is no longer the new black

In the past, conference bags were usually neutral or monochrome, leaving very little to desire and although still functional, Event Organisers lost the opportunity to really be creative and leave a lasting impression – one that gets your attendees and anyone that spots their bag, an opportunity to engage and name drop.

With the near limitless possibilities of today’s digital printing, your event bags can really allow you to be imaginative with your designs. Through commissioning local artists to produce a once-off design or offering a small-batch limited edition print to encourage early registration to your event, your trendy bags can be used to build excitement around your event or even encourage new people to attend it.

To date or not to date

Many of us may have a really cool concert t-shirt sitting somewhere in our wardrobe, showcasing the lineup and even more prominently, the date… Now, this is understandable as these hold more sentimental value than a conference bags, so we would strongly suggest printing a date on the latter. Although our bags are built to last, carrying around an event bag from 2015 just doesn’t carry the same appeal as the concert t-shirt. Rather put the effort into the design or a catchy, memorable slogan that is likely to grab someone’s attention.

If you like it, put a name on it

No matter which direction you go with your event bags, the most significant part is to ensure that your brand is visible – now we’re not talking over the top, but if you’ve taken the effort to create a stunning event bag, it would be criminal not to incorporate your logo somewhere into the design.

This is even more paramount when events have multiple sponsors or partners, as they also want to get as much bang for their buck. Here in lies the tricky part… Having a beautifully designed bag being dominated by multiple logos kind of takes away the appeal of wanting to reuse the bag after the event and having to be a walking billboard. Luckily this is something that professional graphic designers are able to address creatively to ensure that both the bag design and your brands complement each other.

If there are too many brands to incorporate, you can either create a custom tag label which can include a thank you message along with all your brands, or if your event bag includes a lining, your designer can create a stylish step & repeat pattern of all the brands linked to your event.

It’s not just a bag, it’s an Uzwelo bag

Over the last 5 years, Uzwelo has developed a range of custom event bags for various brands in South Africa. From tote and shopper bags to laptop bags and backpacks, we can develop a custom solution that is ideal for your event and budget.