all is nearly here, which means the holidays are right around the corner! Get ready for decked halls, celebratory countdowns and of course, gifting. When it comes to the merry season, your clients aren’t just looking to gift to friends and family, but also customers or employees. In fact, a recent study by Knack shows the corporate gifting market is worth a staggering $125 billion. A thriving market to tap into, now’s the time to channel your inner Santa and become your clients’ business gifting guru.

Before giving you the inside scoop to steer them in the right direction, let’s go over some important guidelines.

Business Gifting Guidelines

Businesses can use corporate gifting to show appreciation and loyalty, build goodwill and express the value of their relationships. However, before you start shopping, think about these three things:

  • The Relationship: Think about the recipient of the gift to determine an appropriate type of present, regarding the relationship at hand.
  • The Budget: Check company gifting policies for any budget limits that may be in place. According to the same study above, the sweet spot for many businesses is between $50 to $150.
  • The Message: Consider the message the gift is meant to convey and make sure it’s thoroughly communicated. Is it showing appreciation to a client for a year of great business? Or, is it to show an employee thanks for going above and beyond?

Remember: Corporate gifts differ from incentives and ads, so make sure they don’t contain any blatant advertising or explicit preconditions for receiving them. Pro Tip: Include your own set of business gifting guidelines on your social channels and website, to guide your clients on their gift-giving journey.

Business Gift Ideas

Now that you’re familiar with best practices, here’s a list of ideas your clients can use to create the gift for their customers and employees!

  • Things that are Memorable: The more memorable the gift is, the better! Encourage your clients to get creative. Think about hobbies the recipients are interested in and tailor the gifts toward that. For example, camping packs with hoodies for avid hiker or scarves for those who love fashion and style.  
  • Things that are Useful: Everyday items employees or clients use are always a good bet. Water bottles, tote bags, backpacks, luggage and baseball caps all fit the bill, while allowing for customized printing and embroidering.
  • Gifts with a Personal Touch: A personalized gift will always stand out from the crowd. From engraved pens or water bottles to monogrammed blankets, customization shows care.
(The Alpine Fleece - Roll Up Blanket - 8718 makes the perfect gift for the outdoor loving client.)

In turn, a bad corporate gift can leave a sour taste in the recipient’s mouth. Steer your clients clear of these gifting misses:

  • Gift Cards: While useful, gift cards do not check the box for being memorable. However, they make great add ons to a thoughtful gift basket!
  • Logos: While including company logos on gifts has been commonplace, the practice is becoming passé. Obvious logos come off as impersonal, and more of a marketing push than a genuine gift. Besides, clients and employees receive company swag all the time, so take a departure from the norm to keep your gifts memorable.

Any one of these ideas will elevate your client’s gifts to another level, but add on a handwritten, personal note, and now you’ve got something really special. Of course, don’t forget to think about gifts for your own customers and employees, and put this new knowledge to work. Happy gifting, gurus!

Oct 6, 2019