5 Ways to Cultivate Company Culture with Branded Swag

19.10.2017 | 5 min read

Swag bag, goodies, freebies, giveaways, gifts, welcome packs, starter kits… Whatever you may call them, they are all like video game cheats. Once you have them, you enjoy the game 100,000 times more. These “cheats” may as well make your company culture more prominent and reinforce your brand as an employer.

Well, who wouldn’t want to get some cool stuff for free from their employer? Following this brilliant logic, I started thinking of a unique kit that our team members might be happy to receive.

I did some research, spent a while with our Design Team choosing the accurate pattern for our branded socks and dropped notepads, tasted different flavours of candy to choose the one that will make the Clouds’ lives sweet and… here it is! A brand new and shiny starter gift pack.

But wait, is it really just about having something for free? Nah. Let me explain to you why kickass company swag pays off.

What is kickass company swag?

Not generic, repeatable and cheap, for sure (unless you want to find it in a garbage bin the next day). With its own story behind it (like at 10Clouds, the leitmotif couldn’t be anything else but clouds), integrity, utility, and a discreet logo rather than a thick stamp on each of the items, you’re heading in the right direction. So, where can you go with this?

1. Engagement and fun

No matter where you work, there will come a day when you feel like your working routine is taking you over and even evolves into boredom. “Hmm, boredom, you say?” Yup. Might be. And the best way I know to fight it is the joy that these little branded items can evoke. Just look at this:

Sharing people’s thoughts during morning coffee chats, having Slack exploded with emojis, and some buzz on social media with the pictures – in my opinion it all stands for the best possible review of your work as an Employer Branding guy.

I remember this very moment when together with the Office Team we were planning mysteriously to surprise everybody in 10Clouds. That was extremely satisfying feeling the good vibes and a sense of inclusion into the 10Clouds family that came to reality.

If every single project should have a goal, this might be the main one to achieve, so be sure everything in the bag helps you get closer to it.

2. Stand out from the crowd

Although giving some special goodies to employees is a regular practice in the IT industry, there are still plenty of companies out there treating this excellent employer branding tool as unnecessary, costly and extravagant. But hey, why don’t you treat your company swag as a pure competitive advantage?

Having your very own kit allows you to stand out from the crowd with your own brand character. This may come as a surprise at first, but you’ll become way more appealing to your current employees and potential candidates (only if you don’t invest in some junky items that don’t fit anywhere).

More than that, you show you have something more personal to offer and attract new hires than just a timely salary payment and rapid growth. There’s always room for some wow effect.

3. Brand exposure

A swag bag is basically a visual representation of values and mission, reflecting our 10C brand. One of the pillars of ours is “to be a great place to work at.” Show it inside and outside – give people items they’ll want to use on a daily basis, showing up at community meetups with stickers on their laptops, wearables, notepads, etc.

Of course people come first, but keep in mind that this will make the company image stronger. What a banana smile I had on my face once I noticed that even our clients got bitten by the swag bug and kept asking for our funny socks, holo stickers and key fobs!

4. Reinforce your company culture

Well, little things make us happy, that’s how it is. They will reflect your approach to the company culture whether it’s seasoned and mature or still evolving. In the latter case, a tasteful swag bag can be the first step towards a structured and rich employer branding strategy full of other geeky celebrations.

Here at 10Clouds, care and appreciation are our main company culture virtues that keep the team powerful and united. Sure, you may have the task checked while having distributed some of the most fancy goodies, but the key here is to leave recipients with the feeling that their presence is highly valued.

5. Give it a second life

The very last reason you should think of while pushing the idea of investing in some swag is the opportunity to reuse it in a creative way. Just as we did – thanks to our devilishly inventive Design Team folks (kudos to Dawid and Damian!).

I guess there’s no need to say any extra words, just take a look at the brilliant shots on the 10Clouds Behance profile. Ekhm, visual ecstasy alert!

Wrapping up

Long story short, don’t let your people feel like “douchebags.” Give them cool swag bags. All these small things tie back to your identity, both inside and outside. It’s not so easy to create a lasting impression in the jungle of same-profile companies that are not widely recognized. So make the swag do its job – that’s what employer branding is about in a way.

Wanna get one of our kits? Come to 10Clouds, have a chat with us and, if you find your spot to join the team, there’s a bag of cool stuff waiting for you.

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