Christmas is just around the corner, and with the busyness of the holiday season, many businesses are scrambling to get out those last minute gifts for their clients, contractors, and/or vendors. Whether you're the type of person who plans ahead or is flying by the seat of your pants, do you ever stop to consider what kind of gifts you should be giving?
Not only do you want your gift to be thoughtful, but the question often missed is: does this gift align with your brand?
A Little Strategic Thinking Goes a Long Way
When planning your gifts (for the holidays or really any time of the year!) it might be worth it to spend some time (or at least a hot minute) to be strategic in what you're putting out there.
You can ask yourself:
Does the gift come in one of your brand colors?
Can the gift be customized with your logo?
And then taking it a little deeper:
What are your brand values?
What do your customers value?
What might be useful for the people who use your products and services?
What might be useful for the people who work with/for your company?
What is your brand personality?
If your company's brand is fun and whimsical, then your gifts shouldn't be boring or serious. If your company values their faith (and it aligns with your customers) then lean into that as a shared value and figure out a way to incorporate it into your gifts!
A Gift That Aligns With My Brand
In December 2020 almost all of my clients were working from home, so I couldn't send the usual box of locally baked treats. I had to think outside the box—literally. I brainstormed various ideas and simultaneously thought about WHY my company exists and what my vision for my company is.
Branch was started so that I could work from home with my babies. My vision is to be able to provide that opportunity to other moms through hiring them as contracted designers on my team. Motherhood and families are a priority that I value in my personal and professional life. So I decided to build off of that for a gift idea.
Instead of sending everyone on my client list a tangible gift, they all received a card that let them know a donation was made in their honor to the Furniture Mission of South Dakota.
The Furniture Mission provides those in need with gently used furniture and household items free of charge. A comfortable home provides dignity, security and a better environment in which to raise a family.
Perfection. I found a way to show gratitude for my clients while supporting area families and helping them to create cozy homes to thrive in! It was a gift that aligns with the core of my brand.
What Can You Give That Aligns With Your Brand?
So this year (or if you like to plan ahead, then maybe next year) I encourage you to take some time to think about what gifts you are giving and how those can align with the core of your brand. Maybe it's a donation to a local nonprofit or maybe it is something more tangible.
Branding is immersive and all-encompassing across every touchpoint your clients come in contact with - your logo, website, print materials, social media - even the vibe, energy and decor of your brick and mortar location.
Gift giving can be an extension of this and a great way to reinforce your brand, create trust, and build loyalty with your customers so that they want to come back to do business with you again and again.