Schwag, Schwag, Schwag

POP! just got back last week from the Network+Interop tradeshow in Las Vegas.

First, for those non-PR tradeshow people - it's Vegas, it's nothing fun, it's nothing exciting. It's spending most of the day on your feet, then at night doing more media events, then grabbing a bite to eat and heading back to your hotel room to continue working and responding to emails from the day. It's not glamorous, it's not fun... it's work.

I'm always looking for signs of an improving public relations industry, and trying to see if they correlate into more money being spent on PR. The show was busy, it was a success for the client ... despite having 3 other public relations firms show up at the booth. One firm, based in Chitown, apparently can't take "no" for an answer, as they've called the client once, came to the booth, and emailed twice - each time, being told that the client has an AOR, POP! Public Relations :-) Classy group of kids, huh?

So, here's the list of schwag I brought back for the director of marcom from my client, so she can get a better feeling for what's being handed out. I still like my idea - hand out little bottles of sunscreen (come on, they'll be used!!). Yes, I was on a mission to collect schwag ....

1. Tin of mints from Xelerated. Nice company, the PR person is from Sweden (as is the company) and she commutes in for tradeshows. She seemed nice, but tall blondes intimidate me.

2. M&M's from Microsoft Live Meeting and MCI, announcing their new partnership for Web conferencing. I love M&M's.

3. Fuzzy dice from - 'nuff said!

4. Blow up globe from MCI. On Friday, the last day of the conference, it was slooooooow. So, I started playing volleyball with the booth babe from MCI, Rochelle. She's from Las Vegas, is a flight attendant on a four year furlough from United Airlines, and is taking her real estate classes to become a realtor. We talked real estate for a bit. She was very pretty and nice.

5. Foundry Network Superhero - probably the most inventive and creative schwag I've ever seen ... but not that practical.

6. Luggage tags from Alcatel. Alcatel is the big French telco, and the color is orange for all their goods. I like orange. They also were giving out T-shirts and orange pens and orange plastic cups.

7. MCI long highlighter pen in different colors. It's when I met Rochelle. I like her, she's sweet.

8. G-string, yes g-string, from Blackmagic. Not sure what to say about this one ...

9. Squishy stress balls from F5, who also sponsored the computer bags for the media and MX Logic.

10. Squishy alien rocket ship from Juniper, who was also handing out cloth bags (which I used to carry my schwag around).

11. Pens from Computer Associates, Google, Blackmagic, Spectel (beautiful redheaded marcom director), and Network Engines.

12. Hacky-sack from Opnet (who was also giving out massages!!). You gotta love a company that goes retro with a hacky-sack.

13. Light up mini martini glasses from Microsoft Live Meeting.

14. Network cables in those cool retractable containers from Msft Live Meeting - in blue OR gray.

15. Little flashlight from Transition Networks.

16. LED flashlight from Spirent Communications.

17. Post-it note cube from FaceTime.

18. Yo-yo from Websense. I broke it, I got to walk away with it (it was an accident, I swear).

19. i-Slice single-sheet cutter from Marvell. The woman was concerned it wouldn't get through security, but it did!

20. Google logo flashing pin. Cool AND annoying!!

Yes, I promised one company that if I took their schwag, I would post about it. But, it is interesting to see what other companies give away at tradeshows, and what the client can do to be interesting and different (sunscreen) for Comdex....

I hope MCI is there ...

Oh, here's a fun photo of the living tradeshow dead ....

The glazed look of the tradeshow dead ... this was the Ofoto outfit and an 7.00 AM event ... ugh! Posted by Hello