The holiday season is a great time to thank clients for their business, but selecting the best business holiday gifts can be a challenge. If you need some ideas about selecting holiday gifts for clients, here are some ideas…
In years past, I made a donation to a charity in honor of all clients (Toys for Tots, for example) or in the name of one particular client (Habitat for Humanity, for example).
This year, I decided to start a new program called “Give Thanks & Give Back” where my kids and I selected a toy to represent each client that we are donating to a local charity. For example, we selected a toy camera to represent Creative Sources Photography, and building blocks for Urban Design Group, an architectural firm.
We sent each client a picture of their special toy and explained why we selected it to represent them. We plan to do this each year as a fun and memorable way of saying thank you while also giving back in our local community.
In addition to donating toys, we send gifts to our retainer clients. For offices with several employees, I recommend sending in a gift that can be shared, such as a big tin or box of premium cookies or a gift basket of coffee, tea, cocoa and treats. Personally, I love the Delacre Prestige collection because the chocolate biscuits are delicious. Optionally, the beautiful packaging on Elsa’s Story homestyle cookies is simply exquisite.
For smaller businesses (or for the actual business owners), you might want to consider a gift card for each key contact, a book they would enjoy, a donation to their favorite charity or a more personalized gift. Amazon.com is a great source for ideas, especially for more personalized options. Occasionally, I order gift baskets from Harry & David, which offers some wonderful assortments of treats and also offers more healthful options, such as organic fruit. For meat lovers, a gift box from Omaha Steaks makes a memorable impression, but not if you send it to a vegetarian client! The trick is knowing what your clients like. When in doubt, go with a more generic gift!
Holiday cards are also a nice touch! With so many people sending electronic cards these days, “snail mail” really stands out more than ever. I love Vistaprint.com to create my own personalized cards, and I generally use a generic Happy Holiday or Season’s Greetings for the printed portion and personalize with a handwritten “Merry Christmas” for my Christian clients. My goal is to say thank you and wish people a happy holiday season, but not manage to offend anyone in the process.
Lastly, Santa starts with a list, and you should too! Make a list of your clients and come up with a gift for each. If you are sending holiday cards, make sure all your addresses are current. Starting early is best, but even if you just started the process in early December, you still have time to get everything done by mid month with some quick planning and smart gift selections!