One of the joys of the festive season is the arrival of corporate gifts. Opening these greetings of all sizes, colors and shapes brightens any business day, and it’s the perfect way to say “thank you” for your business for the year, or give a personal greeting that helps solidify a business relationship.
So to help you along your corporate gift giving journey this year, we have compiled the following tips to help:
1. Don’t wait.
Don’t wait until the last minute to send your corporate gifts. If you do, you’ll feel harried and your recipients may not get them in time to enjoy them. Mail cards by the first week in December.
2. Check company policy on gift giving.
Afterall, you don’t want your gift coming across as a potential bride. Therefore before giving any gift, you should know if either the giving or receiving company has policies regarding gifts. Some companies, particularly those in the financial services, insurance, retail and medical fields, bar all gifts.
More commonplace are restrictions that are placed on the value of a gift or on situations in which gifts may be given.
3. Choose a quality gift.
Don’t pick the least expensive option. Your gift is a reflection of how much you care about and value your clients and colleagues, so be sure to send a good quality item. However don’t send an overly lavish gift, that could be misinterpreted as a bribe.
4. Don’t inadvertently offend the recipient.
Be sensitive to other people’s religious beliefs and senses of humor. Save the gifts that express your personality or beliefs for your personal list.
If you’re sending a card, be sensitive to the message as well. If you’re not sure if your audience celebrates Christmas, choose a more generic greeting, such as “Happy Holidays.”
5. Custom-print your name and hand-address the envelopes.
Every professional should have custom made stationery, at the very least a beautiful card with your company’s logo or your name on it. But always sign the card in your own handwriting for that personal touch.
Always write out the envelopes by hand, addressed to the business. Do not use pre-printed labels, however convenient they may be.
When addressing your envelopes, use personal titles like “Mr.”, “Ms.” or “Dr.”. For business correspondence, the use of “Ms.” is considered proper.
Make sure you have the current business address for each recipient, then make it a point to refresh your mailing list.
6. Write a personal message.
Even though you’ve had your name and company name gold-embossed on the interior of the card, write a few sentences. Offer thanks for a wonderful relationship, give a heartfelt holiday greeting or wish for the New Year, or add a relevant anecdote.
Sending a card without a personal note can come across as more mandatory than celebratory.
In conclusion, try to keep the tradition alive. A holiday card and corporate gift is a small, yet effective way to stand out, keep in touch, and show your appreciation to your business counterparts.