Guide to event memorabilia

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Put down the pens! 7 ideas to break memorabilia monotony at your events.

Pens have been a merchandise staple for years - what’s wrong with a pen? They’re inexpensive to produce and far more practical than the majority of trinkets and reminders that are supplied at events. Pens of reasonable quality can actually last quite a long time too, and their tendency to travel between desks and handbags means that you have lots of opportunity for brand exposure.

But is there anything original about giving away branded pens, and do people ever even read what’s printed on them? No, and no. Ultimately, your company or organisation gets lost among nine others jammed into the same pen pot.

Whether you’re running an annual meetup between club members or planning a big event for the public, do your organisation a favour, and find something a little more unusual to remind your attendees about their trip. Here are 7 examples to get you started.

1. Keyrings

Yes, keyrings have been over-produced almost as much as pens, but bear with us. Providing you can supply a quality keyring that doubles up as a bottle opener, torch, or some other practical tool (preferably one that’s relevant to your audience), you stand a pretty good chance of making it onto someone’s bunch of keys. If you’re operating an exclusive organisation, then a well-designed, durable keyring can offer sentimental and prestigious value for many years.

2. Window stickers

If your event is targeted towards an audience who are passionate about their cause – so passionate they want to display it to the world – then decals and window vinyls are a cost-effective choice. Getting your brand attached to the back of a car or on a piece of relevant sports equipment is an easy way to get exposure and coverage. Customising is easy, designs are limitless – just make sure to use a reputable window vinyl manufacturer to ensure they actually stick to glass and metal.

3. T-shirts or sweatshirts

To be clear; we’re not talking about flimsy tees printed with a dubious heat-patch. Take some time to plan the design of your clothing and you can end up with happy attendees that wear your brand for years to come. If you can incorporate something humorous, decorative, and relevant then so much the better – just something that makes your clothing stand out from the crowd.

Even if you choose a good-quality material, it’s generally quite easy to source customisable t-shirts and inexpensive to mass-produce them. Just make sure to balance your size ordering and budget constraints.

4. Cufflinks

Commemorative cufflinks are a luxury touch, but only really work for certain organisations. After all, you’re literally asking someone to wear your name on their sleeve. Cufflinks are easy to customise (or even personalise with initials if you’re ordering for specific individuals), but don’t have the same breadth of appeal as other merchandise choices. Wearing cufflink-compatible shirts is a specific fashion choice, and is likely to exclude most women in your audience.

5. Glassware

Having your own glassware printed is an excellent way to get your brand or event talked about. Not only does it add authority to your event, but an attractive design is going to stay in people’s cupboards for a long time. It’s much more unusual than a keyring or window sticker and offers a universal appeal (and greater practicality) than a set of cufflinks. Getting bespoke glasses printed won’t come cheap, but creating a collectable item will add significant appeal to your brand in the eyes of your audience.

6. Tankards

Perhaps the next step up from custom glassware is offering bespoke tankards for your event attendees. Providing an on-site engraving service might be expensive, but as a highly-treasured (and often collectable) item, you customers will be happy to pay for a commemorative tankard or stein from your event. Afterwards, it’s likely to take pride of place in your customer’s home and engender great brand loyalty.

7. Commemorative alcohol

We’ve spoken about glasses and tankards, but what about offering something for your guests to put inside them? One option is to re-label an existing beverage, although this is more of a novelty and won’t have the same cult-appeal as being able to produce your own. If your event (or part of your event) is tailored towards authentic home-brewing (or distilling), then offering a sample for your attendees to take home is an excellent, crowd-pleasing souvenir.

Don’t let the excitement of your event stop when your guests leave. Provide them with a genuinely thoughtful keepsake that will regularly remind them of the occasion and hopefully encourage them to return year after year.

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