Timing / Delivery Method / Budget

Details can be boring and overwhelming. We break it down for you in this chapter.
Molly Blabolil-Erfort
VP of Marketing @ Marketing Innovators, Intl.
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The Power of Connection
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Making it Personal
What are you doing to engage and motivate your workforce this month? This year? Next year? The differences are important but the effects are the same: increased productivity, decreased turnover, greater profits.

Save Money, Support Your Employees, & Give Back With Gift Cards

Everything is upside down right now but one thing never changes: people need to know they’re not forgotten. You’ve done the practical things, now go for the heart with little acts of kindness and connection. Whether you want to recognize outstanding behavior or just say "thank you", gift cards outperform cash every time. Perfect for employees, channel partners, clients, or charitable giving.

Keep Your Remote Workforce Engaged and Motivated

Maintain a strong connection to your remote workforce with a happy surprise in their inbox to balance out all the negative news. One-off or bulk emailing of e-gift cards is available and we make the process smooth for you.

Reward Your Employees with Personalized E-Gift Cards of Their Choice

The MI Gift Cards reward code program empowers your teams, customers or channel partners with the freedom to choose their own digital reward, redeemable from a huge selection of name-brand gift cards. No more pressure to select the perfect gift card, let your recipients choose for themselves!

You Give: Send reward codes via email.

They Choose: From a wide range of popular brands.

Everyone Wins: Quick, easy, flexible and impactful!!

Engage Your Remote Workforce to Enhance Productivity and Work-Life Balance

The lights may be off, conference rooms quiet, and coffee kettle empty… but the internet, phone lines, and video conferences are still abuzz. Now, how are you thanking and recognizing your employees for their continued hard work during the “new normal?” Send them something a little more personal with a gift bundle of your choice. Select from a variety of options that will be delivered right to their door.

Send a Unique, Personalized Gift Bundle

Reassure your employees that we’re in this ‘new normal’ together – while remote, they’re still part of a team.

Why Gift Bundles?

  • To say "thank you" for your dedication to the company.
  • To gift a few home office tools to keep them engaged, motivated, focused, & productive.
  • To reduce their stress and help keep them healthy.
  • To have some fun!

Themed Gift Bundles Can Be Customized to Fit Any Occasion

Gift bundles are a joy to receive, while reminding us of our shared purpose as coworkers and colleagues. Whether your company is heading back into the office, extending remote work, or looking for ways to thank your people (or clients) – now is the time to start planning ahead.

Start a Program

Setup a program that allows you to communicate, say thank you, happy birthday, and much more all year round. Our platform offers a social wall, ways to collect surveys, feedback, analytics, give rewards, and much more.

Giving Corporate Gifts with Meaning and Impact

With the end of the year and the holidays right around the corner, now is the time to start planning how to thank your employees, clients and customers.

Although it takes time out of your already busy schedules to plan and send these gifts, studies 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.” Everyone appreciates the recognition and consideration.

If you are wondering where to start, here are some things to consider if you want to make that holiday gift both thoughtful and impactful:

  • Be clear about the purpose. Although it’s tempting to attach a concrete outcome to the gift, keep in mind 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 internally or from vendors and business partners. Make sure you follow your company and business partner’s guidelines while planning for holiday gift giving.

Let's Look at Options

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 to get 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. They are also easy to receive as they provide a world of choice both online and in-store. Send the card digitally which is fast and convenient, or opt to give a physical card and consider gift wrap and a personal note which adds a nice touch.
  • Vouchers for iTunes, MP3s, ebooks, or other digital media. If you can uncover your recipient’s media habits, a voucher or gift card that lets them add to their digital library is a gift they’ll enjoy for years.
  • 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 who receive promotional products use that product at least once a week. When carefully selected, those products keep your organization in mind throughout the year. Since it is a holiday gift, be mindful of any branding you place on a gift, as it’s not the time for blatant self-promotion.
  • Charity donation. If you know your recipient well enough and they’ve mentioned a preferred charity, consider a gift in their name. Alternatively, simply offer the option of making a donation to the charity of their choice. We’ve seen that this particularly resonates with younger employees.
  • Delicacies. Consider delivery services such as Omaha Steaks, Lobster Gram dinner, or Harry and David food baskets delivered directly to their home. This option as well as gift cards to local grocery stores allows employees to spread holiday cheer to friends and family.
  • Rotating use of the “best” spot in the company parking lot. While difficult to gift wrap, the prime parking spot is much-appreciated by employees, especially after a long commute in bad weather.
  • Holiday lunch. Depending on the size of your organization, this can be off-site or catered in. If your holiday lunch takes place off site, think about holding it in the early afternoon and then giving employees the rest of the day off. A few more personal hours during this busy season is something everyone appreciates. If you hold a catered, in-office event, pump up the holiday spirit with decorations and grab bag gifts.
  • In-person distribution. If possible, deliver your gift in person, especially when it comes to long-term customers. Yes, this takes extra time, but ends up as time well-spent and adds a personal demonstration of your appreciation.

With a little time and effort holiday gifts go a long way. Moreover, you may find that they are as much fun to give as they are to receive. So, put on your Santa suit (or maybe just a Santa cap) and let the holiday cheer begin.

"The Big Four" Gift Types

In addition to the above suggestions, a quick Google search can uncover uncountable ideas. However, it can get overwhelming fast. So let's narrow it down to the four most common gift types and dive into their relative strengths and weaknesses.

Timing is the Key – When to Give Employee Recognition

As we’ve mentioned in previous blog posts, rewarding and recognizing employees is essential to maintain motivation and increase employee morale. However, one common question managers and budget holders ask is “when is the best time to give employee recognition?”

The answer is that there are a few different scenarios that warrant a reward or some form of recognition. However, the key is to act promptly! Timing is everything because the more quickly you reward the action, the more likely employees are to be motivated to repeat those actions, and strive for future success.Here are a few concrete examples that illustrate the importance of immediate recognition:

  • When the workload is heavy and employees are working overtime to meet deadlines and accommodate the work demand.
  • An employee has achieved a personal development or promotion (e.g. an employee finished an educational course or received a certificate for passing an exam, or was promoted to a higher position or title).
  • An employee has gone above and beyond on a task or project (e.g. did exceptionally well presenting a deck or closing new business or helping a current client solve a problem).
  • An employee has provided feedback or ideas that increase efficiencies or company success.
  • An employee has accomplished a milestone – a birthday or service anniversary. To help build employee retention provide more points or higher valued awards to certain milestones. For example, 5 years at the company will count for double the amount of points.
  • A group of employees worked exceptionally well together as a team.If at all possible, these momentary or non-monetary awards should be sent the same-day, while the meaning of it is fresh in their minds. Real-time incentives are key to the sentiment and value to the recipients.

However we’ve seen that two other scenarios (if not sent the same day) are:

  1. Sending the same week or
  2. Building on a consistent cadence (weekly, monthly or quarterly) where an employee’s accomplishments are recognized and rewarded.

Employees are the foundation to your business, so always treat them with the same respect and urgency that you would for a client, prospect, or customer.

How Non-Cash Awards Can Boost Your Employee Recognition

The IRF reported that 84% of all U.S. businesses are using non-cash awards, and their executives are recognizing this as a competitive advantage. Among those non-cash awards programs, employee recognition is at the top. These kinds of programs can be critical in motivating employees to meet their goals, as well as those that extend beyond their typical job scope.

Interestingly, the IRF reported that the most common objective of employee programs is improving morale, productivity, and customer satisfaction. If you are looking to improve those aspects of your business, employee recognition is a great place to start.

As we are in the throws of the holiday season, non-cash awards, such as gift cards, are especially motivating, and account for 71% of employee program award types. They offer choice and flexibility in rewards spending. Another effective way to utilize non-cash awards is implementing a points-based program where employees earn points and redeem them for merchandise, prepaid cards, and gift cards.

Marketing Innovators maximizes your choices with options from more than 200 top retailers. Our award vouchers allow you to recognize your participants how they want to be recognized. It can be completely customized to fit your budget and needs. Our platform caters to recognition and incentive programs, service anniversaries, and on-the-spot recognition.It is important to not only recognize and reward those top-performing employees, but also offer the opportunity to your other employees. Knowing that the awards are attainable maintains motivation across all staff. In addition, it is important to ensure your program’s effectiveness.

Top performing companies also use their data and analysis to drive decisions in employee programs. A study cited by the IRF reported that the three performance metrics that are most often used to evaluate the effectiveness of an employee recognition program are productivity, employee tenure, and employee satisfaction. Frequent and consistent check-ins for employee feedback can go a long way in assisting you with this.

Now is the Time to Start Planning How to Thank Your Employees, Clients and Customers

Although it takes time out of your already busy schedules to plan and send these gifts, studies 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.” Everyone appreciates the recognition and consideration.

If you are wondering where to start, here are some things to consider if you want to make that holiday gift both thoughtful and impactful.

  1. Be clear about the purpose. Although it’s tempting to attach a concrete outcome to the gift, keep in mind this is a relationship-building opportunity, not an incentive.
  2. Be familiar with the recipient’s policies around gifts. Most organizations have placed a monetary limit on the size of gifts employees may receive internally or from vendors and business partners. Make sure you follow your company and business partner’s guidelines while planning for holiday gift giving.