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Company swag, or Stuff We All Get, has been a tradition for corporations for over a hundred years. Spreading your brand through free stuff is an attractive idea because it’s a relatively low-cost, high-impact strategy—and the fact that the promotional product industry made 25 billion in 2022 shows how popular swag is.
However, in recent years, employee expectations have evolved. People aren’t satisfied with a branded mug or jacket anymore, which makes company swag difficult to get right.
So if you want to give out the best swag to your employees—something employees will actually use/wear/brag about—you’re going to need to up your swag game.
The Benefits of Branded Company Swag
The value of swag for employees is two-fold: one, you show your employees that you care about them and appreciate them by giving them free stuff. This creates a fun, cohesive culture at your company. Plus, swag can really help your onboarding experience by showing new hires that employees are a priority for the organization.
The other half of value is that you get free advertising as your employees take your brand and logo out into the wider world.
In a perfect world, good corporate swag is a win-win situation that benefits both the giver and the receiver.
Best Practices for Employee Swag
Get the best return for your efforts when giving swag by following these best practices:
- Give employees choice. One of the best things you can do to make your corporate swag more meaningful is to not give every employee the exact same thing. Instead, offer a catalog of options, such as clothing, accessories, office supplies, etc., and let each employee choose what will be most useful for them.
- Want to create a custom swag catalog with different logo options, colors, and items? We can help you!
- Keep it tasteful. No matter how boisterous your brand may be, most employees aren’t going to wear a super bright shirt with a massive company logo splashed over it. Instead, offer stylish, modern items with tasteful branding that doesn’t overdo it.
- Integrate company values. Reinforce and strengthen your culture with swag that’s branded with your core values. You can also strive to make it fun—for example, if one of your values is optimism, offer drinking glasses with graphics showing how the glass is half full, not half empty.
- Offer eco-friendly options. Making swag eco-friendly and sustainable shows your commitment to the environment—for employees who value this, seeing their company share that value will strengthen their attachment to the culture.
The best company swag is stuff that employees appreciate, resonate with, and will actually use—following these best practices will help your swag check those boxes.
22 of the Best Company Swag Ideas to Give Employees
Useful Swag Items
1. Custom Mouse Pad
Whether employees work at home or in the office, a mouse pad is something that everyone who uses a computer could use. Make it high quality and cover it with fun, company-centric artwork.
2. Blue Light Glasses
For employees who stare at screens all day, blue light glasses could be a lifesaver. These block out irritating blue light from screens and can reduce eye strain.
3. Premium Clothing
Any swag clothing you offer needs to be of the highest quality and needs to fit perfectly—otherwise, no one will wear it. Whether you offer shirts, sweaters, hats, jackets, or pants, make sure they’re comfortable and stylish.
4. Planner or Journal
Let employees choose either a planner for the year or a journal, depending on their preference. Offer ones with high-quality paper, and include a branded pen as an added bonus.
5. Quality Water Bottle
Most people could probably drink more water, right? Offer nice, insulated water bottles that employees can use at work, the gym, school, or wherever they want.
6. Thick Throw Blanket
For areas that get cold, a thick, warm blanket is almost always welcome. Just make sure the blanket isn’t a thin, flimsy thing that doesn’t do much.
7. Duffel Bag, Backpack, or Luggage
Quality bags are always nice. Based on your employees, offer a bag that will make their lives easier. If you have a lot of students, a backpack could be useful. If your employees travel a lot, nice luggage is a great idea.
Wellness Swag Items
8. Fitness Watch
Encourage employee wellness with a fitness watch and company-branded band.
9. Yoga Mat
For something more budget friendly, a yoga mat is a great swag option. Plus, it’s a large canvas to really get creative with your branding.
10. Branded Pot or Planter
The vast majority of employees enjoy having plants and greenery around—empower their green thumbs with a set of succulents or other desk-friendly plants.
11. Massage Item
Foot massagers, massage guns, neck wraps, or face rollers are all great ways to unwind and destress. Based on your budget, offer a massage item that employees will love.
12. Plush Robes
A branded robe is a great way to empower the relaxation of your employees. Give them something comfortable to lounge around their homes in while feeling high-class.
Tech Swag Items
13. Custom Headphones
Headphones and ear buds are great gifts for nearly everyone. And many brands are inexpensive while still offering quality sound.
14. Phone Charger or Power Bank
Everyone uses a phone, so make it easier than ever to keep employees’ phones charged and ready to go.
15. Bluetooth Speaker
For music lovers, this is a no-brainer. Offer speakers that allow for fun branding and let employees show off their company each time they show off their tunes.
16. Phone Wallet
Minimize clutter by giving employees a way to keep their cards and phone together in one place.
Eco-Friendly Swag Items
17. Reusable Straws
Offer a set of metal straws that completely eliminate the need for paper or plastic straws.
18. Organic Tote Bag
Totes are extremely useful for everyone, and they’re great at cutting down on plastic usage.
19. Bamboo Cutting Board
Cut down on plastic and provide a useful kitchen item at the same time! Anyone who enjoys cooking will love an item like this.
Swag Boxes for Remote Employees
20. Tasty Food Swag Box
Send your remote employees a box full of unique snacks and treats to satisfy anyone’s sweet tooth.
21. Self Care Swag Box
Send items like scented candles, bath salts, lotion, sleep masks, and a mug with some tea in it to help remote employees have a peaceful home.
22. Custom Swag Box
Best of all, let employees choose the items that go into their box—that’s the best way to make sure employees love it.
Swag: Satisfying, Wildly Accurate Gifts
Okay, so acronyms may not be our strong suit, but we know a thing or two about employee gifts, and the best corporate swag is no different. Offer swag that employees actually want, and you’ll build your culture, increase their engagement, and spread the word about your business.
If you want to upgrade your swag, including customized options, gift boxes, and more employee choice than ever before, contact Awardco today.