Business Gifts for Your Clients and Employees
Tis' the season for business and corporate gift-giving! Ifyou believe in the law of reciprocity, and if your businessis the least bit successful you must; you know that givingback is not only the right thing to do, but it's very smartbusiness as well. Let's look at some of the benefits andmechanics of Christmas and holiday gift-giving.
* WHY DO IT AT ALL?
Gift giving is an excellent way to not only say thank youfor all the business and continued loyalty your clients andcustomers have shown over the past year, it help tosolidify relationships and in some cases, actually tilt theplaying field in your favor. A well-conceived business giftwill speak volumes on your integrity, thoughtfulness andsincerity and may make the difference between you and acompetitor. As for employees, the days of 50 years and agold watch are long gone, so a token of appreciation duringthe holidays or other special occasions can turn a mediocrerelationship into one of fierce loyalty.
* WHEN TO DO IT?
Obviously Christmas and the season surrounding it are themajor themes here. Other times of the year, such asThanksgiving, Easter, Labor Day etc., may also presentgolden opportunities as it is not expected then. Othertimes to consider might include occasions such as abusiness anniversary, marriage, births, promotions, newoffices or branches, and possibly retirement (ESPECIALLY ofa competitor!)
* WHAT TO GIVE?
This can be the most difficult part of the process. All ofus have been the recipient of the cookie cutter approach,as the countless fruitcakes of Christmases past haunt ourfreezers. In a large company, it's difficult to avoid this,but by bearing this in mind, you'll be able to come upsomething unique and stand out above the rest. Also thinkof the nature of the business relationship. Anythinginappropriate would not only be unappreciated, but couldhave the opposite effect of that you're trying to achieve.If you can, try to make it as personal as possible,reflecting the interests and likes of the person receiving the gift. Be mindful of religious differences, as you don'twant to offend in that area either. While striving to givethe nicest gift possible within your budget, take care notto appear as though you are bribing anyone for business orloyalty.
* HOW TO ACCOMPLISH THIS?
Start as soon as possible, and dedicate at least oneperson to work on this solely, as depending on the size ofyour list, it can become onerous. Given enough time andresource, however, it can be done quickly and efficiently.Shopping online has made things so much simpler. You canfind so many more choices with the click of a mouse thanyou could with weeks of prospecting on foot. Many of yourfavorite brick and mortar merchants now have an onlinepresence as well, as they too recognize the immensepossibilities of the medium. Take advantage of web vendors,many of whom offer free shipping, corporate and bulkdiscounts, and many other perks to get your business. Itreally is a time-saver!
Christmas and Holiday gift-giving isn't the gargantuantask it used to be. The internet and a smart strategy makeit profitable and enjoyable!
Keith Thompson is webmaster of GiftsForBiz.com, and therecipient of many BAD business gifts.
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