Getting the best gift for your budget that will be sure to delight your VIPs …. not to mention your boss! Here’s 9 key questions to ask – some of them might surprise you!
Sometimes there are so many options it can be mind-boggling. To help narrow them down, think about if you want something specific (e.g. I need 50 pairs of ugg boots for a delegation) or if you are after more general gifts (e.g. I’d like a chocolates and champagne celebration-type hamper). Often coming up with a single theme can help (e.g. it’s for Christmas so I’d like an ‘Australian Christmas hamper’ to be shared in the office). Most companies will be delighted to assist – going in with a straw man will help them to help you get the right fit a lot more effectively and save you time in the long run!
This is a nice touch if done tastefully and discretely. You want to think about this up-front, and make sure if this is the case, you allow extra time for production. Don’t be shy to ask for samples before you buy – quality can vary significantly across suppliers and you want to make sure your brand is well presented.
Usually clients are okay with a very small amount of branding, but won’t want it to form the main design of the product.
If you are in a premium market, this will take careful consideration to do tastefully.
Look for other customisations that will make your gift stand out amongst competitors and feel personal, rather than an ‘off-the-shelf’ gift. Many companies will offer a free personalised gift guide around your theme as well as gift cards with personalised messages. These small things can make a big difference. Ask for samples, or even better, if you are creative, see if you can be part of the design process.
Don’t forget to ask if the cards or guides are professionally printed and exactly what you are getting.
Also – a top tip when doing gift messages – if you are doing more than 50 customised messages from a number of staff in your company; it is a LOT easier and more effective to ensure messages stay on brand if you execute personalised messages in the following way:-
Studies show that recipients of gifts from Australian companies prefer receiving gifts that are Australian made, and it will strengthen your brand image to show you are supporting fellow Australian companies. To make sure you get Australian made product, look for retailers who are certified with the official ‘Australian Made’ campaign logo.
Remember, there is a difference with ‘ON’ or ‘BY’ when talking about dates for delivery. From experience, it is usually okay if gifts arrive 1 or 2 days early, but completely embarrassing if gifts arrive late for a special occassion (e.g. after Christmas for a Christmas gift!). It is a lot less stressful for all involved, therefore, if you let your supplier know gifts need to arrive BY a certain date, and it’s okay a few days earlier but not okay if its after this date. Decide what you want and be firm.
…but don’t be cruel!!! Make sure you are not asking the impossible and have allowed enough time for customisation and delivery. As a general guide, for orders under 50 items, 2-3 weeks notice may be enough; for orders of 100 or more, you will likely need to allow 4+ weeks to get the best options for your VIPs delivered on time. This will, of course, depend on what you need (and how many). But never underestimate the time involved in getting bulk orders of what you want out!
Are some gifts going to rural or remote areas in Australia? Are some gifts being delivered internationally? Select suppliers who are experienced in delivering to areas that match your needs.
After you’ve done your budget, ask if the supplier can create and give you a posting schedule to ensure your gifts arrive with your clients on time and if needed, at the same time! For example, rural / regional Australian gifts should be delivered 2-3 days before metro areas. If you have international deliveries, ask for their delivery timescales.
So now you’ve read the detail – here’s the summary for you – I hope this helps!
Need more help? I’m happy to pass on any tips I’ve learned the hard way that may save you the hassle!
Email me anytime on: firstname.lastname@example.org
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