If you regularly attend business events then you’ll understand the importance of ‘Event Swag’. For those less familiar, the ‘swag’ we are referring to are the freebies that are given away as promotional items to help keep a company or brand fresh in the holders mind. But what makes the ideal item?

These promotional pieces can be a real after thought or rush job for most that are attending commercial events. Simply shove a logo on a reusable bag and that’s job done – right?

Wrong. Or should we say it’s wrong if you plan to actually gain anything from handing out these freebies.

At the Design Studio we design and organise printing on a daily basis for events and we can confidently say that each piece is completely unique and useful to both those handing them out and those picking them up. We’ve created a ‘Must Have’ list to help guide you in the right direction for the perfect swag.


These are small but mighty and when done right can be useful AND beautiful. Avoid the cork and go for an acrylic or glass finish. These will last longer and keep better.

Ensure the design is eye catching or witty to spark your target audiences interest. This means focusing less directly on the company and more on the aesthetics. That doesn’t mean you can’t brand the coaster to within an inch of it’s life with company colours, fonts and imagery, but keep your details modest.


The key is not to take up too much of the writing space with your own information. If they can’t use it then they’ll lose it.

These type of items are brilliant for keeping your details in the back of the users mind. There is always a need for a place to write notes and if your web address is on each of those items then sure enough you’ll find a higher chance of being in the forefront of their mind when they require someone in your field.


But not just any old pens… The pull out kind. Long gone are the days where ordinary pens fit the bill. They now have to be multi functional, super pens.

The banner pens not only have branding on the outside, but also contain a small sheet of paper that rolls out for additional information. An added plus is they don’t break the bank either!

Not a fan? Why not try the 4 x functional ball pen? It’s a phone holder, screen cleaner/stylus all rolled into one branded pen. What more could you ask for?!

Things to consider:

Pencils are great until you need a pencil sharpener – make sure that whoever you are handing these out to will use for a while. If the lead snaps or goes blunt what is the likelihood of the bin being closer than the nearest sharpener?

Phone accessories are useful unless you have a different make of phone – with phone companies constantly changing and developing it is hard to find one size that fits all.

Portable chargers are handy unless they only last for a week – investing in that latest fancy gadget is great until it breaks. This will say more about your company than a working one.
Unless you are willing to pay the big bucks, we advise against these.

Bags might seem like a great walking billboard for your brand but how likely are they to be used again if the design comprises mainly of a garish logo of a company they haven’t built a relationship with yet? Design ‘smart’ and we’ll take this statement back!


Next day delivery is not something you can rely on when it comes to this type of design and print work. Most of these projects take at least 7 working days to produce and that’s not including the design time and proof check.

Ensure you allow enough time before your event to give the designers and printers enough time to work their magic.

Still aren’t sure on what items to take to the event with you? Drop us an email and we’d be happy to go through more options!