Comparing SaaS Swag — What’s in your Goodie Bag?

Image created by Yasmine Sedky (@yazdesky).

Some SaaS companies are sweetening the deal of their online offerings by making a 3-D first (or second, or third) impression — with swag. Instead of just an e-mail after signup, these companies are sending their greetings via snail-mail, with packets of goodies.


ChartMogul’s Super Cute Swag Bag

While the swag may change, the cuteness is endemic. The current welcome bag, sent to new subscribers, is a well-rounded piece of fun marketing that combines the genuinely useful “cheat sheets” with snicker-worthy stickers and a soft branded t-shirt.


Buffer’s Brilliant Method for Staying Sticky

Buffer’s swag may be limited to stickers and the occasional t-shirt, but Community Champion Nicole Miller makes them count by including hand-written notes that are so sweet and genuine, you’ll see them on hundreds of blogs and even more Twitter feeds.

This gal clearly follows the Miss Manners recipe for a great thank you note: She’s specific in why she thanks the recipient and relentlessly positive.

Stickers and notes are typically sent to people who participate in Buffer chats, or contribute to the community in some way.

“We tend to ask folks who share a kind word if we can send them some swag. Many times when we see someone who joined Buffer, we might ask them for their address as well.” — Nicole Miller, Community Champion

Hootsuite’s Gifts That Keep On Giving

Swag is near and dear to Hootsuite’s heart. Matt Diederichs, Community Growth, says “It’s been great for building organic referral and awareness through the years.” Hootsuite runs a Freemium model with Free, Pro and Enterprise levels.

They use swag in a few different ways, punctuating different points of the customer lifecycle and rewarding fans and advocates with plush Owlys and t-shirts. In fact, their swag became so popular, they couldn’t keep up with demand and had to offer a paid version.

Want some Hootsuite swag? You can get it here. Check out the #hootswag hashtag on Instagram and Twitter for live goodie bag reportage.


Product Hunt’s Meowvelous Note

When Product Hunt sent a spontaneous Thank You note (complete with kitty sticker) to 1,000 supporters, tweets poured in from around the world.

“Gotta say I’ve never received a personal card from a website before.” — @camerondaigle
“I was having a crappy day…And then this was in the mailbox!” — @KikiSchirr
“Yaay @producthunt — cards and kittens — classy customer service ;-)” — @SimplyFriday

Often, the factor that stops companies from showing appreciation even in simple ways is the cost. But by only offering a surprise to the first thousand to send in a contact form, they managed to send some love without breaking the bank, and get a lot of love back in return.


Swag can be used to make a first impression, encourage positive engagement, and show appreciation for advocacy or progress down the sales funnel. Each goodie bag has a purpose. Each sticker has a mission. The question is: What can your swag do for you?


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