Friday, May 30, 2014

Swag: Unique May Be Overrated

There were tee shirts. I cannot say this ever sold a single book, but I really liked the notion of people wandering around advertising.

Sad truth: Shirts and printing = $$$
The materials were of mediocre quality and didn't last all that long.

I've not done another foray into wearable things. Mainly because of cash. Also, you can guess I did the shirts when I still had a house because it isn't like I could store boxes of shirts in multiple sizes aboard the boat. So. Space. Pain and suffering. Cost.

That said, the people who walked away with the shirts all seemed very pleased. I got photos from all over the country of people wearing them. THAT was fun.

For a couple of conferences, I needed swag to add to larger swag bags for Linnea Sinclair's Intergalactic Bar and Grill. Her advice? Blinky shit. She may have that phrase trademarked. I usually needed 200 - 300 of something. Thus, I'd turn to my favorite search engine and search on LED toys or glow in the dark toys. A huge array of websites offering all kinds of light-up novelty gizmos will pop up. Most of them price their items for buying in bulk. You'll find glow sticks, glow necklaces. Acrylic glasses with LEDs imbedded. Anything on this earth you could possibly want and a few you probably wouldn't. These things, because they were lumped together into a larger swag bag, usually needed to be labeled with my particulars. Generally, I affixed whatever goody I'd chosen to (moar swag alert!) bookmarks or cards.

Vistaprint did my bookmarks and book cards. The work is fine. The price point was good. The cards and bookmarks are STILL being given out. When someone asks me what I do, I invariably get asked whether I have a card. I can hand out a bookmark with a cover (and all of the 'find out more' info) on it. It's worked out well. Much easier to store, too.

I'll admit to having a favorite piece of swag. He was for the first book (which has aliens in it.) 100% useless. But I loved them, nevertheless.


  1. BLINKY! Oh well then, now that I know the sekrit......I've always craved to do T shirts but I was afraid of the very things you mentioned (cost, quality, etc.)

    1. I have one dear friend in CA who now must have a shirt for every book I put out. I adore her, so I do a one of a kind for her. But yeah. I think I did 150 shirts. The real price breaks come when you're ordering far more - but then you're also laying out a crap load more cash. Doing 5 or 6 as prizes for contests might make better sense.

  2. Love the alien! ~peace fingers~