Right now, in a secret location, crack teams of promotional staff are stuffing showbags in time for Sydney Royal Easter Show

Preparing for one of the biggest Coca-Cola merchandise events of the year, all hands are on deck to get ready for close to a million visitors who’ll traipse through the showbag pavilion this April.

“From a localised special event perspective, its our biggest branding event for the year,” explained Kate Wholohan, state marketing manager at Coca-Cola Amatil. “Its really important.”

While plenty has changed at the Show over the years, the showbag remains an enduring favourite. For several years running, Coke has sold the two most popular bags at the event – the Coca-Cola and Powerade branded bags.

“Ive been involved with the Sydney Royal Easter Show for three years now, and I continually see people flock to the showbag stand,” said Kate. “I really think people go to the show for the old-school reasons. Theres a bit of tradition there, and bit of nostalgia.”

Marietjie Muijs, group account director for The Promotions Factory, who produces the bag, agrees sentimental reasons definitely play a part in the showbag’s persistence. “People still want products,” she said. “We may live in a society that says it wants everything digitally, but from our perspective we see people still love buying a bag full of great products.”

The firm, who’s a long term collaborator on Coca-Cola promotions, has collected a huge amount of data on what customers actually want from a showbag. “The most interesting thing has been watching how consumer behaviour has been changing, particularly over the last three years,” said Marietjie.

“During the show, we get consistent feedback from the consumers. Youd be very surprised, at these kind of events, theyre very open in talking to us about what they want.”

In response to requests from show-goers, the team brought back popular items like the yo-yo to the showbag, while improving the quality of the Coke backpack so teens can comfortably take it to school. This year’s Coca-Cola bag will also feature a pair of portable speakers, while the Powerade bag has earphones, a sweatband, a soccer ball and sports socks.

"Ive been challenging our showbag organisers to always put items in there that are going to appeal,” said Kate. “Its about keeping the latest cool factor in there.”

The Sydney Royal Easter Show runs from April 10-23 at Sydney Showground - the only place to get your showbag.