9 Promotional Merchandise Items Attendees Will Actually Want

No one needs more cheap, branded tchotchkes. At your next event, offer promotional merchandise that will please attendees—and increase brand awareness.

promotional merchandise

It’s 2021—past time to get creative with the promotional merchandise offered at events. Most of us have enough branded pens, tote bags and plastic cups to stock an entire thrift store. Do yourself and your attendees a favor by offering something more useful at your next event!

Here are some out-of-the-box promotional merch ideas to consider.

Self-Care Merchandise

Hand sanitizer
This is a given in 2021, but you can get creative by offering the sanitizer in an unexpected package. Promotional merchandise companies now sell it in a mini bottle with a lanyard, a spray bottle roughly the size and shape of a magic marker or a dispenser shaped like a credit card.

Nail polish
This would work best for an event with mostly female attendees, but it's an unexpected, fun gift. You'll increase brand awareness even more if you select a hue that matches your brand colors.

First-aid kit
First-aid kits fall into the category of things you never seem to have on hand when you need them. The good news is that kits can be branded and come in all shapes and sizes. You can create one small enough to fit in attendees’ car consoles, purses or desk drawers.

Tech Merchandise

A PopSocket is an item you don’t realize you need until you have one! PopSockets make holding your phone much more comfortable, and they double as a stand so you can prop your phone on its side. Since the average American picks up their phone 63 times a day, offering branded PopSockets at your event ensures mega visibility.

Bluetooth speaker
Bluetooth speakers come in all shapes and sizes now. You can pick the size, shape, color and level of quality you think your attendees would appreciate most. Speakers are convenient to have in multiple locations—office, different rooms at home or at the pool—so these gifts are likely to be a hit.

Portable charger/power bank
Just like speakers, portable power banks are designed in a range of sizes now. Attendees will appreciate this promotional merch because having a backup power source on hand is always a good idea. Pro tip: Suggest they keep the power bank permanently in their work bag or suitcase in case they leave their regular charger at home one day.

Sustainable Merchandise

Sealable silicone bags 
Give guests something they can pack in their lunchbox every day such as a reusable bag. You’ll be giving them two reasons to feel good about packing their lunch: They'll save money from eating out and spare the planet from unnecessary plastic waste.

Bento box
Take the lunch theme further by offering a reusable square container with compartments your attendees can use daily for lunch. No plastic bags or BPA-filled containers needed. (Plus, everyone in the break room at their office will see your logo!)

Promotional merchandise companies have designed all kinds of fun ceramic pots and self-watering planters that can be branded. Offer a small one at your conference that attendees can pack in their luggage easily to keep at their office for a pop of greenery.


The right promotional merchandise can become a real talking point at your event and generate buzz. Consider offering one of these items as your main giveaway and also securing a handful of higher-value items you can incorporate into your main sessions and give away onstage. Collapsible hammocks or folding camping chairs are options. Offer a contest, reward a faithful constituent or ask for certain posts with a special hashtag on social media to determine the winner.

Promotional items are an opportunity to give your attendees something useful while also increasing your brand awareness. Please, no more cheap lip balm!