2018 Trending Promotional Products from PPAI Expo in Las Vegas

Hot & Trending Promotional Products From PPAI Expo 2018

Each year, I have the privilege of attending the PPAI Expo in Las Vegas, which is the largest promotional products trade show in the world. PPAI Expo 2018 was host to over 1200 suppliers with nearly 25,000 attendees and more than 250,000 promotional products showcased!

Not only am I able to connect with existing suppliers for Perfect Imprints, but I’m also able to connect with new suppliers within the industry. This helps expand our product offering and strengthen existing relationships with our vendors. 

One major benefit of the thousands of exhibitors at PPAI Expo is that I’m able to identify trending promotional products within the marketplace, allowing Perfect Imprints to better serve our clients. 

Based on the recent exhibiting products at PPAI Expo 2018, I’ve identified the following promos as hot and trending for 2018. 

Note: Some of my favs are not available yet on our website because they are so new. For those productions, you’ll see (Link coming soon). I’ll be updating with the links as soon as they are available in the coming weeks.

2018 Hot and Trending Promotional Products 

Custom Stainless Steel DrinkwareVacuum Insulated Stainless Steel Tumblers and Bottles

This is a continued trend over the past few years, with this being the year for many new color options, bottle shapes, and sizes. This trend may have started with Yeti, but it has now evolved into products that not only match Yeti-quality but also offer much trendier shapes and color options at a fraction of the cost of Yeti. An even better bonus is your logo is printed on these tumblers. Because vacuum insulated stainless steel technology works so well to keep your drinks cold or hot for long periods of time, this type of drinkware will continue to be the preferred option for many years.

My Favorite: 16 oz. Stack Pint

Custom Socks - Promotional Logo SocksSocks

While custom socks have been one of hottest promotional products lately, they haven’t yet peaked with their popularity. This is still a rapidly growing category within the industry. Whether you are giving away economy promotional socks or premium quality socks, these are well-received items, especially by the younger generations. So many choices are available with options to includes socks with a woven design, full color sublimated designs all over the socks, fuzzy socks, to socks with a simple patch on the top.

My Favorite: Full Color Sublimated Socks

Renewable Products

Products made of wood have become increasingly popular as more companies adopt corporate responsibility policies to minimize their impact on the planet. Renewable products made of bamboo and other types of wood are excellent ways to stay within your corporate responsibility guidelines. A few examples include wooden decals, wooden Christmas ornaments, wooden key chains, wooden magnets, and even watches made of wood.

My Favorite: Wooden Decals (Link coming soon)

Custom Printed Qi Wireless Charging PadsQi Wireless Chargers

The trend of cutting wires with technology products continue, and that includes charging your smartphone. With the new smartphones, wireless charging has become a standard feature. It only makes sense to take advantage of this new technology by branding Qi (Pronounced “chee”) chargers with your logo and company info. It’s commonplace now one household to have four or five smartphones, so have a charging station that can charge multiple devices at once is convenient. Cut the cables and opt for Qi charging functionality!

My Favorite: Boltron Wireless Charging Pad (charges up to 5 devices at a time)

Custom Presidio BackpacksBackpacks

Not just any backpacks, but high-end backpacks are extremely hot! These retail-quality custom backpacks which can be branded with your company logo are excellent gifts for employees, executives, and top clients. As company executives and students are always on-the-go, many of these trendy backpacks include a padded laptop pouch. Whether you use a backpack for your daily activities for school/work or for weekend trips, you’ll love these new styles. Those who make frequent weekend trips will love these new backpacks in lieu of bulky luggage.

My Favorite: Absolute Backpack

Onyt Smart Buttons - Printed with Your LogoSmart Products

Artificial intelligence has become a reality for everyday life in the home and office. Smart products such as light bulbs, smart buttons, and other Alexa and Google Home compatible products are hot items within the promotional products industry. Controlling a sequence of multiple events with a push of a button is simple. If you want to dim your lights, turn on your TV, and set your surround sound to the perfect level for watching a movie, that can all be done with an affordable wireless, app-controlled device, which can be printed with your company logo.

My Favorite: Wifi Smart Plug

COB LED FlashlightsCustom COB LED Flashlights

Flashlights are extremely useful products, and their effectiveness increased ten-fold once LED technology was readily available. But now the new generation of LED bulbs is here and it’s called Chip on Board LEDs. This means the individual LED bulbs are mounted directly on the chip allowing the lights to be more compact and more reliable than standard LED flashlights. While these are great giveaways for outdoorsmen, a reliable flashlight is a great tool for everyone to keep in their car in case of car trouble or at their home in case of power outage.

My Favorite: COB LED Outdoor Lantern

Dynamic Duo Charging Cable - Charges both Androids and iPhonesPhone Chargers

Americans rely on their phones more than ever. We use them for email, messaging, shopping, entertainment, and a myriad of other uses. With the increased usage of phones, we have to charge more often. Therefore, charging cables and power banks are extremely popular. But you don’t have to settle for cheap, low-quality charging cables. These are products that everyone needs, but no one ever wants to buy, so give them one branded with your logo.

My Favorite: Dynamic Duo Charging Cable (includes both a Lightning Plug & Micro-USB)

As with any trend, it’s always best to get in early so your company is giving away the best and hottest new products BEFORE your competitors. Your giveaways should always be useful for your target audience, so be sure to keep that in mind when buying.

While some trends come and go, many of the product trends mentioned above will be around for many years to come, although there will likely be a lot of evolving with the technology products as they become increasingly more advanced each year. 

If you want to get your company on the frontlines with trendy giveaways your clients and prospects will love, we are here to help you make the process easy. 

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2016 Promotional Products Marketing Trends

Patrick Black
patrick@perfectimprints.com

Patrick Black, MAS, is the founder of Perfectimprints.com and has been in the promotional products industry helping businesses and organizations since 1999. When not geeking out over the newest and greatest promotional items, you can find him paddleboarding at the beach or hanging out by the pool with his wife, three kids, and his basset hound in Fort Walton Beach, FL.