According to a study by Forbes Magazine that involved 300 corporate gift buyers, about 80% of the respondents reported that gifts have improved relationships with employees and customers. 48% of the companies stated that gifting delivered substantial benefits including improved employee retention and improved customer loyalty.
After receiving a promotional gift, 67% of people can recall a brand name after a year. According to Hampers With Bite, giving gifts to customers, employees, and prospects creates an immediate emotional connection between the recipient and the company.
Corporate gifting is one of the most effective types of advertising, but how do you use corporate gifts to market your business?
Personalize Your Gift
Personalization is the most important aspect whether you send a gift to a client, employee, or prospect. For customers, personalization shows that you value their business and take an interest in them as a person.
Personalized gifts can convey that you appreciate and recognize the effort of your employees. They will make employees feel valued which will result in a long and happy working relationship.
Take your time to personalize a gift based on the professional affiliations and interests of the recipient. Also consider personal interests such as hobbies, sports, and pets; this will create a strong connection that will resonate for years.
Deliver a Thoughtful Note
To set yourself apart, add a thoughtful note with your gift that explains why you choose the gift and why you believe they would appreciate it. Such a simple gesture can have a powerful effect. This effort goes to show how much you care. People want to do business with brands that care for them.
Handwritten notes are the best. If that is not possible because of scale, consider a video message delivered through a QR code. The code can link to a video of the company’s CEO offering personal thanks.
Corporate gifts for customers don’t have to be just holiday sends. There are many places through a client’s journey that are perfect for making the connection using a well-personalized gift. You can send gifts during milestones, renewals, event registrations, or for bringing referrals.
Gifting customers regularly will keep your brand in their thoughts all the time. Corporate gifts must not be a one-time thing, or something done during the holidays.
Gifting outside the holidays is a great way to stand out and make your brand stay top of the mind.
Give Something Useful
The best gifts are the ones that solve a problem, make life easier, and are used daily. Ensure your gift has usefulness built into it.
A gift that can be used every day is more valuable than a one-off experience such as a dining experience.
A gift that hits all three spots; making life easier, daily use, and solving a problem is the best gift that you can give.
Put your logo on the gift and you will be sure that your customers won’t forget the brand that gifted them the solution.
Tier Your Gifts
Tier your gifts to extend your budget. Different clients value your company differently; therefore, one gift will not have the same value to all your clients.
To maximize the marketing prospects of corporate gifting, create three tiers, each tier corresponding to a customer’s value to your brand.
Opt for budget-friendly gifts such as a calendar for tier three customers. Higher value gifts such as t-shirts should be given to tier two clients. Tier one gifts such as branded mugs with your logo are exclusively for tier one customers who are your most valued clients.
Presentation is Key
Don’t forget about the unboxing experience. The presentation and polish of the packaging will communicate the intention and thought behind the gift. The unboxing experience can make or break your gift.
The visual aspect matters. Consider the senses that come into play during the unboxing experience. For an amazing experience, you can have a QR code on the packaging that links to a video of a crackling fire. This will make the recipient have a fire in the background as they unwrap their gift.
Holidays are incredibly busy; shipping routes get overloaded which compromises shipping timelines. It can take several weeks to collect all of the addresses of a big send.
Your recipient can tell if a gift was not well-planned or thoughtful. To have a well-executed gifting strategy, you need to plan ahead.
For Christmas gifts, you should target the first two weeks of December to distribute your gifts. In this window, your clients and employees are still at home, before they undertake any holiday travel.
Have a Budget
You should view the money spent on corporate gifting as an investment instead of an expense. Having a budget for promotional gifts will ensure that you don’t overspend which can negatively affect your bottom line.
Without a budget, you cannot measure the return on investment of gifting. A budget will enable you to track your spending and cover all year-round instead of concentrating on only certain occasions.
Don’t go overboard with your gifting. Sending a gift that is too expensive can imply that you are trying to buy your customer’s business. You will come off as desperate and pushy, which will have the opposite effect that your gift should achieve.
Check Corporate Policies
Before you send any gift, check out your client’s company gifting policy to ensure you don’t violate any laws. In some industries, there are legal restraints on corporate gifting.
Many government agencies and big corporations have a gifting policy in place to prevent unethical behavior. The giving and accepting of gifts can be seen as inappropriate by the company associated with your client.
It is important to express appreciation and gratitude to customers and employees using corporate gifts. A great corporate gift is personalized, thoughtful, useful, well-presented, and has perfect timing. To maximize your return on investment, you need to understand your business goals and send gifts that will enhance your brand image.