Feb 20, 2017
Las Vegas, The Consumer Electronics Show sometime in the 1990's my wife and I had traveled to Vegas early for the NEW ASI show and happened to catch the first day of the CES show (as planned). The digital electronics age was exploding onto the consumer stage. DVD, VHS, Video games, video cameras, giant projection TVs
The crowds were huge and the obvious opulence was thick on every isle. A plethora of high techiness in this video paradise.
Really, who can't wait to get a 15 foot satellite dish for their backyard designed for SETI so as not to miss Wheel of Fortune?
I too was somewhat bewitched by all the gadgetry until a certain display caught my eye, not so much the display itself but the line of people that stretched for at least the equivalent of 2 city blocks.
Now being an ad specialty distributor I knew at once that this company (to remain nameless) had chosen their booth giveaway/incentive with tremendous care and forethought, what could it be? I truly had not a clue so my curiosity got the best of me and I meandered up as close as I could safely venture so as not to endure the wrath and laser like stares from those already in line, I did catch a "hey buddy, the end of the line is back there!" (yeah somewhere in Arizona by now).
What was this holy grail of all giveaways? What would compel a grown man to endure an hour wait in a seemingly endless line? What could compete with this digital wonderland ? The absolute best promotional product choice ever...........an Etch-A-Sketch, yep... millions....no.....billions of dollars invested in electronic wizardry and the biggest draw to ANY booth was a Childs toy from the 50's, no electricity, no RAM, just some very fine aluminum powder, a stylus, two knobs, some plastic beads encased in a plastic housing with a glass cover...simplicity.....wow.
Promotional products when used properly, be they nostalgic or cutting edge, can and do create a better flow of traffic to your booth or display. As I always remind my clients "Promotional Products WILL entice more people to your booth but what you do next is up to you."
I only had to wait 45 minutes for my Etch-A-Sketch.