When it comes to giveaways for the office, there are so many choices out there that it can be difficult to find items that inspire employees, promote your brand and increase productivity. Thankfully, if you narrow your focus to only include items that provide functionality and not novelty, the search becomes easier. If you’re having trouble finding the right giveaway items for your next office event, consider the following options:
1. Tote Bags Are Always a Hit
Tote bags are a fantastic idea for virtually any office giveaway. They provide functionality for employees who lead an active lifestyle, but they can also be used in everyday situations to carry clothing, tech accessories, office supplies and more. One of the biggest advantages to tote bags, however, is that they are large enough to be noticeable, but small enough to be carried everywhere. This is why you should consider taking things a step further and getting custom tote bags made that incorporate your company’s logo and other branding elements.
2. Portable Media is Still Useful
Portable media, like thumb drives and memory cards, have been used as giveaways for many years, and although more and more data is moving to the cloud, portable media is still useful. Employees can store everything from music to work projects on portable media, and by branding these items, your giveaway becomes a portable promotion tool that can get people talking about your company.
Of course, an alternative to this is to provide a subscription to a cloud-based service that offers employees online storage and data management. Regardless of which approach you take, consider providing things like TED Talks MP3s or inspirational conference lectures along with your portable media giveaway.
3. Personalize Whenever Possible
Personalization is another awesome way to give your employees something useful that serves as a branding tool. Virtually anything can be personalized, but some popular options include apparel, Moleskine notebooks or planners and fitness gear. Personalizing each individual giveaway is typically a better fit for smaller offices due to the need to know each employee and his or her tastes, accomplishments and personality.
When personalizing, try to find unique things about each employee that you can cater to. Also, make sure each employee’s giveaway is comparable to everyone else’s in order to avoid the appearance of favoritism or bias. You should also avoid personalizing things using words like “best” or “top” as this may make some employees feel like they are being marginalized.
4. Change With the Seasons
Many office managers choose to theme their giveaways depending on the season. Using this approach, you can provide functional items, like scented candles or seasonal branded apparel, that employees will be happy to use as promotional tools when out and about.
For warmer weather, consider branded t-shirts, sunglasses and beach or lake gear if you’re near water. For colder weather, think about giving away branded mugs, jackets, gloves, scarves or ski or hiking gear if you’re near the mountains. No matter the location, however, you can offer useful items that represent your brand and provide employees with a reminder of their time with the company.
Something else to consider when taking this approach is to give away items that can be easily stored and used again the next year. This will ensure continuous promotion without the need to give the same things over and over.
5. Inspirational Media Can Improve Productivity
Another popular office giveaway is inspirational media. This can come in the form of a book, tickets to an industry event and even by hiring well-known inspirational guest speakers. The goal is to give your employees not just something to read or a memory to take away, but to give them inspiration to better themselves and the company.
If you choose to give away books, think about also offering online copies along with physical copies as many people these days use tablets and other smart devices for reading. Likewise, if you’re going to give away tickets, make sure to provide employees with time off as needed in order to attend. By inspiring employees, you are giving them a reason to be more productive and promote your brand because they will feel a closer connection to your shared mission of success.
Things to Avoid
Although there are plenty of good options available for office giveaways, there are some things you should avoid, including:
1. Food Items
Virtually everything can be branded these days, including cookies, candy and cakes, but it’s best to avoid giving these items away in the office. Part of the problem in using food as a giveaway is that some people are allergic to or have an aversion to certain food items while others are dieting and sweets would be a temptation. On top of that, some people may have health concerns, like diabetes, meaning they won’t be able to share in the giveaway and may feel excluded.
2. Portable Device Chargers
Although portable media is a good idea as a giveaway item, branded chargers can be problematic. Most people these days carry some type of smart device with them at almost all times, but there are a number of differences in charger compatibility that may mean you’ll have to purchase different chargers for different employees.
For example, Apple’s iPhones have a proprietary charging port that won’t work with micro-USB chargers. These days, USB-C is becoming the standard for Android-based devices, meaning the traditional micro-USB itself is on the way out. For these reasons, it’s best to skip tech giveaways that become too complicated or run the risk of being outdated and useless in a few years.
Finally, avoid giving away pens. They scream old school and can make your company look regressive. To add to this, pens are easy to lose, they run out of ink and get thrown away and most employees these days are going to be using tech to keep notes and complete work anyway. So if you’re thinking about giving away pens…just don’t do it.
No matter how you choose items to give away at your next office event, always try to put yourself in your employees’ shoes and think about what they would find useful versus what you think would be useful. Each office dynamic is different and different industries value different things. By taking a little bit of time to really consider your employees’ needs, you’re sure to make your next office giveaway event a hit!
When it comes to giveaways for the office, there are so many choices out there that it can be difficult to find items that inspire employees, promote your brand and increase productivity.