ASI Chicago 2014: Highlights and Trends from the Show Floor! [VIDEO]
If you’ve been following our blog for a while, then you probably know that every year around this time a lucky few of us get to ditch the office in favor of ASI’s annual trade show. This year was no different, and on July 16 four of us hit the trade show floor at McCormick Place in downtown Chicago.
From new gadgets to updated versions of the classics, booths at ASI Chicago showcased every promotional product you could imagine – and then some! Before we get down to the nitty gritty, check out this video our media team put together of all of the highlights from the show.
Sorry for making you feel bummed you missed out on all that fun! For those of you who couldn’t be there, never fear. I’m here to give you a rundown of all of the new trends in the promo product industry. So without further ado…
2014 Promotional Product Trends
Tech, tech, tech!
You may have noticed in the video that tech was the word on everyone’s tongues this year at the ASI Show. Since technology and gadgets rule the world, it’s only fitting that the promotional products industry is staying on trend and adapting to all of the new opportunities tech presents.
Whether its keeping your phone charged on the go with a custom car charger, blasting some tunes at a party with a Bluetooth speaker, or listening to music at work with headphones, the promo product industry has you covered!
The best part about all of these technological promo items is that EVERYONE can use them! No matter what industry you’re in, your customers are using smartphones and tablets that need charging!
You didn’t ask, but I’m gonna tell you: the second best part about all these gadgets is that they’re available in a wide variety of price points.
In stark contrast to all of the technology innovations in our industry, old school mason jars are making a comeback. (Thanks, Pinterest!) Mason jars with handles, two-tone mason jars, ceramic mason jars – you name it, there’s a perfect mason jar for your event. Planning your ~*RuStiC FaiRyTaLe*~ dream wedding? Oh man, has the promotional products industry got you covered. Tailgating? School spirit? Craft club? Yep! We’ve got mason jars for everything.
We all know that there are a bazillion brands advertising and marketing to try to get a piece of consumers’ attention. With the airwaves more and more crowded with advertising and branding, the promotional products industry is offering complete customization with custom shapes to guarantee your brand has a truly unique marketing campaign.
From custom stress ball shapes to custom fans, mint tins, and sunglasses shapes your brand can create a one-of-a-kind promotion.
We saw all kinds of awesome things at ASI this year. However, one thing was notably missing. Which leads me to…
Tote Bag-gate 2k14
Even though the majority of the ASI Show was a smashing success, there was one tiny snafoo, which I am calling Tote Bag-gate 2k14 to be just as hyperbolic as everyone else who writes on the internet.
Every year at ASI after you register you are handed a convenient custom tote bag for the show. Like so:
2013’s ASI Show Chicago tote bags
Since this is a promotional products convention, these tote bags come in extremely handy for collecting all of the samples and catalogs your little heart desires.
However, when QLP checked in at registration around 10 a.m. there was not a staff member handing out ASI tote bags in sight! After doing a little investigating and trying to hunt down some tote bags, we overheard someone say, “I can’t believe they’re out of tote bags already!”
Upon further investigation, it was confirmed that all of the official ASI tote bags were gone. Yes, you read that correctly. One of the biggest – if not THE biggest – PROMOTIONAL PRODUCTS CONFERENCES in the country ran out of tote bags.
Apparently there were more tote bags on deck, though we were not made aware of that.
“We did run out of our first set of tote bags, however we did have additional bags to give out so each attendee had something,” said Catherine Vadino, senior copywriter for the ASI Show. “We had a great turnout at ASI Chicago this year.”
Even though we didn’t get official ASI tote bags, it was really only a minor problem considering we were at a promotional products convention, so it was pretty easy to find a tote bag or 12 on the show floor.
Once we found some tote bags, we were all set to get the scoop on the latest and greatest in the industry.
Overall ASI Chicago was a blast, and we had a great time learning about all of the cool new things the promotional products industry has to offer! See ya next year, ASI!
Were you at ASI Chicago this year? What do you think about the trends in the industry? Did I miss any important trends? DID YOU GET A TOTE BAG?? Sound off in the comments below!