Widgets Magazine

Harry Meade's InfoComm 2015 Swag Report

I,Aeove just gotten back to work since returning from the InfoComm show where the great #InfoCommSwagHunt took place. That hashtag was how we tracked and shared where good booth swag giveaways were located while walking the show floor, even getting manufacturers using it on social media to attract people to their booths.
After three days and nearly three full purple Microsoft bags of branded merchandise, I,Aeove compiled a rundown of the loot, as well as a ,Aeubest of,Aeu list. Since everyone else was doing it, why not me? At least I waited until after the show to give away the best of the show awards,AexB6
Best VIP swag
Kramer Electronics for the Bluetooth speaker. I hesitate to put VIP stuff on this list since it is very limited quantities, but this was really nice.
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Best Phone Battery Charger

2015-06-23 10.17.14Warranting its own category this year, I found at least four entries, but for going through-*a scheduled booth tour you scored a large two port large battery from Aten, so it wins. This got used multiple times the remainder of the trip, including after-hours parties and some extra theme park time. Runner up is Vaddio, who gave out the smaller version, but theirs is metal instead of the standard plastic, and more ruggedized is always better in my book.
Most Varied Swag
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AQ-AV, who seems to have given away just about everything. You needed to be at their reception for the best score, and you should have been since they are great for the industry.-* They had luggage markers, Velcro cable wraps, and, possibly the best giveaway of the show, cocktail plates that are perfect, especially for outdoor parties. We managed to get a complete set, with permission. Vaddio also scored high here as well with a battery backup, themed pin, themed t-shirt, and themed can/bottle cozy. They used their Beatles theme on nearly everything this year, keeping with the band logo themes of the past couple of years. It will be interesting to see what they come up next year!

Most Useful Tool

2015-06-23 10.28.32Premier Mounts for giving away a mini level, such as you would buy from the home improvement store. They also gave away a-*tool I had never seen before called Gap It and it,Aeos used to put the right tolerance between the ultra-thin bezel panels of a video wall. Without that tolerance, you can cause damage when the panels heat up and expand. BICSI gave out measuring tapes and ANSI gave out a very nice graph paper notebook.

Best Bag

2015-06-23 10.48.20Vaddio, hands down. We had two days at Universal planned this year and used another company,Aeos bag the first day that did not survive the excursion, but the Vaddio bag not only survived the second day, it was able to be used to hold swag within our luggage on the way home and will be used on many more adventures, I,Aeom sure. So many bags at these shows have little use beyond the show and just end up landfill; it was good to see a good quality one on the floor this year.
Best Business Card
While this is not technically swag, the award goes to one of the principals at Just Add Power that was showing in the BTX booth. He had guitar picks printed with his information and was handing them out as people finished the booth tour.
There were many other notable items from the floor as well; Honorable Mentions include:
Quail Electronics for their backscratcher on a telescoping pen.
NTW Group was displaying locking RJ-45 connectors, but had, as a give-away, an adapter to allow you to plug a USB stick into your smart phone.
AVNation and Premier Mounts had chap stick.
Z-Band had an insulated drinking glass resembling a red solo cup.
USB sticks with company marketing materials were popular and in new forms this year. They were built into rubber wrist bands, in smaller form factors, and one even built into something that looked like a thick business cards. Another multiple entry was eyeglass lens wipes. Again, Vaddio was a winner here. Too often, exhibitors use thick silk screening that renders one side of the wipe useless. Vaddio has had them made in a way the preserves both sides of the wipe, and they just work. I will admit to restocking each year at InfoComm since I am blind as a bat without my glasses. Another personal favorite of mine are the Crestron mints, which did not disappoint this year.
All in all, it was a good year for swag. I,Aeove seen better years, but I,Aeove also seen leaner years. I have some ideas on what the swag choices might mean on a deeper level, so stay tuned for that in a future article.
UPDATED:-* A late entry for best show floor contest goes to Quail Electronics! They win this year because I did, and am now the proud owner of a Go Pro Hero 4 camera! Runner up is CableOrganizer.com giving away a complete electrical tool and test kit with leather tool bag.

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