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Rick Blabolil

How to Give Corporate Gifts with Impact

Ring the bells, the holidays are in full swing, and that means taking the time to thank your clients, customers and channel partners.  Although it takes time out of your already busy schedules to plan and send these gifts, studies from Promotional Products Association International show that “…vendors who gave were twice as likely to increase their chances of being contacted by recipients as those that didn’t have a gift program….”

So how does your company truly ensure your gift is making an impact? Here are some ways to make that holiday gift both thoughtful and impactful:

Be clear about the purpose. Although it’s tempting to attach some sort of concrete outcome to the gift, keep in mind that this is a relationship-building opportunity, not an incentive.

Be familiar with the recipient’s policies around gifts. Most organizations have placed a monetary limit on the size of gifts employees may receive from vendors and business partners.

Be aware of other restrictions on gift giving. Most companies place a $25 limit on the value of gifts employees may receive. Make sure you follow your company and your business partner’s guidelines while planning holiday gift giving.

Once you’ve determined that a gift is permissible, finding just the right gift is important. With so many options available, it can be a bit overwhelming to sort through them. Here are some thoughts for getting you started:

Gift cards continue to top the list of recipient preferences. They are easy to give because they take the guesswork out of the process for the giver. And easy to receive, because gift cards provide the recipient a world of choice online or at a store. E-gift cards are becoming very popular, but if you opt to give a plastic card, placing it is a holiday box, nicely wrapped, and accompanied by a short personal note can be very meaningful.

Promotional products have longevity. Promotional products are a great choice when you want to give a gift that lasts beyond the holidays. According to the Promotional Products Association International (PPAI), 73 percent of individuals receiving promotional products use that product at least once a week. In other words, when carefully selected, those products keep your organization top of mind throughout the year. Since this is a holiday gift, be very subtle with any branding you place on the gift. This is not the time to be blatantly self-promotional.

Consider a donation to the recipient’s preferred charity. If you know your recipient well enough and they’ve mentioned a preferred charity, consider a gift in their name.

Give in person. If at all possible, deliver your gift in person, especially when it comes to long-term customers. Yes, this takes time, but in the long run it is time well spent that adds a personal demonstration of your appreciation.


To make your holiday giving easy, contact a Marketing Innovators solution expert to find the corporate or employee gifts that match your goals and budget.