It may seem counterintuitive, but client gift-giving is actually very good for business, especially small businesses. The return always exponentially outweighs the investment. And, the act of giving goes a long way in building relationships and customer loyalty.
Clients that receive gifts, especially well-thought out ones, are more likely to remember you and use your services again. They may have received great service from you in the first place, but a well-planned, well-timed gift is the one thing most people say they remember the most. You'll stay top of mind with clients when you give them gifts and they will associate generosity and thoughtfulness with your brand. Of course, this increases the likelihood of repeat business and referrals. And, gifts are tax-deductible too, making them a win-win for everyone!
Giving gifts should be built into your marketing strategy. Here are some of the reasons:
1. Staying Connected: Giving gifts is a great way to reconnect with people you may have only spoken to on business terms. Gifts allow you to stay in touch and keep the relationship open. When your gift arrives, it opens up the lines of contact. The client will most likely reply, providing you the opportunity to discuss ongoing business needs and solutions. Perhaps you sent your client a Giving Crate on her birthday, that crate will likely sit on her desk for days, keeping you and your business on her mind (and the mind of every one who happens to see it as well).
2. Building Bridges: Regardless of where you are you can send gifts to clients that make them feel close even when you may be geographically far.
3. Gifting Reinforces Your Brand: Show those who chose to do business with you that your brand stands for relationships, thoughtfulness and going the extra mile. You can also let your clients know other things your brand values through your choice of gift. Does your brand value buying local, supporting small businesses, eco-friendly, fair trade, new adventures, more fun, etc. Whatever your brand values are, you can represent them through your gifts.
4. Gifting Sets You Apart From the Competition: Chances are, you aren’t the only business your clients work with or know of, but gifting may help you be their favourite. People do business with those they know and like. Sending a thoughtful gift is the perfect way to distinguish your business as a preferred partner.
The key to good gifting is for it to be well-timed and well-thought out and to truly WOW your clients. The following are occasions where gifting would be well-received:
At Completion - New home owners expect to receive a gift upon completion.
As a Thank you
As a Congratuations
A New Home Gift
A New Baby Gifts
A Thank You for the Referral Gift
A Wedding Gift
Happy Holiday Gift - Gifting during the holiday season is always a nice gesture and well-received.
A Retirement Gift
A Work Anniversary Gift for your employees
Any other occasion that you would enjoy giving a gift. For example, we work with an Investment Advisor that likes giving her clients vacation gifts. She gives a travel-themed gift to her clients when they have saved up for a big vacation and are getting ready to leave. She loves rewarding her clients with a fun gift when they aren't expecting it.
No matter how you look at it, gifting is an incredible way to grow your business. The key to great gift giving is to make sure the client is central to the gift. Wowing and impressing the customer with something they will personally love is the reason for the gift. If you're giving a gift just to advertise your company, than most likely the gift is not worth giving. Put the customer first and your gifts will be well received every time! We guarantee it!
I often get asked how it all started with Giving Crates and here is the story:
One day, (sometime around the middle of 2015), Archie from Cumberland Crate Company contacted me about selling their crates at Giving Gifts. My response was that I would be interested in selling their crates but I'd LOVE to fill them with local, eco friendly and fair trade gifts from the store and then sell them as gift boxes. His response was: "our crates are begging to be filled!" And that was the start of something wonderful! We got so excited by our first shipment of Cumberland's high quality crates. They are handmade in Vancouver Island from sustainably sourced wood.
I remember jumping and squealing with delight the first time I filled them with gifts and took photos of the crates. It was amazing to see my vision come together and they were even more beautiful than I imagined. Over the year, we worked with Cumberland to completely customize our crates. They now have the Giving Crates stamp on them and are designed with our needs in mind. We offer them in 4 different sizes, including one with a darker stain. We also have one size that has a lid which makes them convenient for shipping. We've come a far way from the traditional Cumberland Crates Archie asked us to sell, to create our own completely custom versions.
Cumberland's original crates
When people stop by the store, I often get asked what I create. I used to look at them with a sad look and say that I organize the store but I don't create any of the beautiful gifts we sell. Since the day I filled our first crate, I can now proudly say that I am the artist behind the Giving Crates! Each one is a true work-of-art. I'm so proud that Cumberland Crate Company, a company with values similar to our own, creates our crates. As they say "our vision is to provide a long lasting, sustainable product while creating work right here at home and helping our local economy." We couldn't agree more!