The box of sox. The toy meant for someone 5 years younger. The fuzzy green bathrobe. For many children, trauma is experienced every holiday season when they open gifts from their well-intentioned but misguided aunts, uncles and grandparents. Definitely not the feeling you want to bestow upon your attendees at the annual company holiday party!

Company gifts can also cause a bit of trauma. They’re a great way of showing clients and employees how much you appreciate them and value your relationship. That is, if the gifts have some real thought behind them.

No one likes getting impersonal holiday gifts. That’s why it’s so important that event planners get the gift-giving part of the event planning just right. Someone once said, “People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”

Here are some tips to help you give the kinds of corporate gifts that make your attendees smile, not cringe.


Company Holiday Party Gifting Tips!

  1. Make it About Them, Not You

Your very first rule must be this one: don’t make your gift about you, make it about the other person. Who are your clients? Who makes up your internal teams? What items would seem relevant and useful to them?

  1. Be Personal and Purposeful

Your gift is not just the gift, it is also the presentation and messaging that go with it. From the packaging to the personalized, perhaps even handwritten messages, be thoughtful in every aspect of your gift-giving.

  1. Be Unique

You’ll most likely not be the only show in town giving out gifts. If you want to differentiate your events from the competition, then think outside of the box. How can your gift be unique from all of those status quo gifts, yet still remain relevant and valuable to your people?

  1. One Size Doesn’t Always Fit All

Depending on your industry, your clients and the gift itself, it may be absolutely reasonable for everyone to receive the same gift. But it’s never a good idea to take this approach right out of the gate.

Instead, consider an alternative approach that focuses on your long-term and high-value clients. In some instances, you may be better off putting more thought and money into a smaller number of gifts for your most loyal and valuable clients, than to purchase and give the same gift to all your attendees.

  1. Hire a Specialty Promotional Products Supplier

Sometimes, no matter how much thought you put into what could make the perfect gift, you come up blank. You may want to consider asking for help from a product supplier rep. Those suppliers that are focused on traditional branding techniques may be less equipped to help you brainstorm unique gift-giving ideas. Look for a supplier that may be more able to help you plan your gifts.

  1. Make Your Budget Work for You

You can give thoughtful gifts no matter the size of your budget. Low-cost items, those that are generally under $15, can still have high impact. If you’re giving a mug or shirt, as examples, make them the BEST pen and BEST shirt your attendees could ask for.

For mid-priced items, those between $15 and $50, you can find creative gifts and stretch your budget by ordering in bulk. In this price range, if you order in bulk, you can STILL create gifts with a custom design.

And if you decide to only focus on a handful of your employees and high-value clients and you have more to spend, remember, the key here is to be thoughtful, not flashy.

This season, if you decide to incorporate gifts into your holiday event, be sure to be thoughtful, unique and creative. Doing so will ensure you aren’t forever known as “the company that gives out bad holiday gifts.”


If you need help planning your next company holiday party, click here to contact us!

Corporate Event Management
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