Get Me (and my Swag) to the Trade Show on Time

August 20, 2015

Get Me (and my Swag) to the Trade Show on Time

What is the best trade show swag? The swag that arrives on time. Kidding. Not really. Ponder this...if your business swag arrives late, what happens to your marketing plan? 

And yes, we know, the best trade show swag is the swag that represents your brand AND arrives on time or early.



Even when you place orders through a reliable company like PROMOrx, if you forget to order your business swag with time to spare, you might find yourself racing against the clock or paying more for expedited shipping. Sometimes, weather or just plain bad luck interferes with your plans, which makes it all the more important that you get your orders in early!  

Trade Show Troubles:

We recently had an experience that emphasized the importance of giving yourself plenty of lead time on an order. It was a perfect reminder that you can’t always count on the trusty man in brown, aka the “UPS guy” or the crew in orange and purple. Here’s what happened: 

We requested some of the best trade show swag samples from one of our suppliers so we could review quality, and see if any of these swag items would work for a client’s upcoming trade show. We often review swag for our clients, to ensure they get items that represent their brand.

The swag samples shipped on June 19th and were sent via 3-Day Express. Scheduled arrival was June 24th. 

At the end of the day, there was no sign of a delivery truck. We began to wonder, “Where the heck are our swag samples?” 

A review of tracking showed us that the package was held up at a shipping hub, where foul weather was delaying deliveries. The samples did not arrive until July 6th ---which was EIGHT days late.

Luckily our client was ordering far in advance, so the late arrival wasn’t a major problem for us. But this reminded us to remind our clients:  what if this had been for a client who had waited until the last minute to order their business swag, and timing was an issue?

Delivering Rain or Shine? 

No one can control the weather, and shipping companies do not guarantee shipments that are delayed from “‘events beyond their control”’--like the weather or a major emergency.

When your swag order is delayed, a guaranteed “overnight or 2-day delivery” becomes meaningless. If your trade show or meeting starts on Monday and your trade show swag arrives on Tuesday, your marketing plan is in trouble.  

Through the years, we’ve learned a lot about shipping. We’ve chased a UPS truck in high heels, called a relative in another state to pick up a package and deliver it to a nearby client, and even hired private couriers--all to make sure our clients’ orders arrived on time. 

With over 15 years in business, we have NEVER missed a client’s event. But we have had some close calls!  

You can avoid your own close calls by taking preventative measures.

How can you make sure your company swag makes it to the trade show (or other event) on time? Read on:

Recommendation 1:

Order your trade show swag and other promotional products in advance.  If you have ample storage space in your office, ordering for the next six to twelve months has many benefits:

  •         No worries about late shipments
  •         Money savings (the more you order, the more the price goes down on most items)
  •         Save on shipping with Ground instead of Express.
  •         Test the effectiveness of a product at smaller events
  •         You will always have a great giveaway on-hand and ready to go

Recommendation 2:

Read the actual shipping times. Don’t always select the cheapest if you need your branded items quickly.

Express shipping, Next-Day Air, etc. exist for a reason. Sometimes, you need something ASAP, so don’t order Standard Shipping and assume it will come in enough time. Several business days can turn into longer, especially during winter months, and if your event is fast approaching, err on the side of caution. You might need to budget around the added expense, but if you need something last minute, it’s really your best bet.

Recommendation 3:

Order from a reliable promotional products company like PROMOrx.

So we may be biased here, but one thing we pride ourselves on is the degree to which we prioritize our customers. If you need something soon, we do everything we can (see above!) to ensure you get it. There’s also nothing worse than ordering business swag that isn’t what you thought it would be. That’s why PROMOrx has informative product descriptions, videos, and reviews of items. It’s also why we test much of the swag we sell ourselves. We 'get' the details.

As much as we love a good workout, we’d rather not ruin our favorite pumps running after a delivery truck again.

But we would for our clients. You can save our shoes as well as your own shoes the damage, and your company a lot of time, money, and worry by ordering your trade show swag giveaways with lots of time to spare!

This will also afford you the time to leisurely scroll through our website and pick out the perfect item, ask questions about the items, and decide what fits your company’s marketing budget, style, and clientele. We’ll do our best to accommodate you no matter when you order, but remember: the early orderer catches the best deal!