Who are the recipients of corporate gifts?
Who are the recipients of corporate gifts?
And our top 3 tips for gifting each group
Who are the recipients of corporate gifts?
Victoria Pi
5 min read

When sending corporate gifts, it’s important to split recipients into their respective groups as different groups will have varying purposes. Make each gift unique through personalization to help ensure each gift achieves its intended goals.

Within corporate gifting, there are 3 main groups of people to gift: employees, customers and partners, and prospective clients.

Photo by shawnee wilborn on Unsplash


Purpose: Show appreciation and recognize their work.

Employees are the backbone of your business and should be treated as such. A study conducted by The Office reports that 66% of employees are “likely to leave their job” citing reasons related to lack of appreciating and feeling undervalued in their workplace. The same study indicates that the figure increases to 76% for millennials who make up the majority of the workforce today. High turnover negatively impacts businesses as it can lead to low workplace morale and high costs incurred for rehiring and training. The takeaway message from these numbers is that managers should appreciate employees more.

But how?

An effective and simple solution to show gratitude to employees is gifting. From recognizing someone’s contribution towards a project to achieving a major milestone, a thoughtful gift conveys your thanks beyond a temporary spoken “thank you.” Gifting can also bridge the gap of connecting with team members and encourage stronger engagement with the business. With the rise of remote work, gifting can help to foster a sense of belonging within the community no matter the distance and promote feelings of pride in being seen by managers.

Our top 3 tips when it comes to gifting employees:

  1. Give them the power of choice
    Acknowledge the diverse preferences people have by giving them the choice in selecting what gift they prefer. Consider investing in a corporate gifting service that offers recipients the ability to choose their own gifts from a curated selection of items tailored characteristics of each employee. Increase the likelihood your employees will receive something they find useful and meaningful by letting them decide what they want. However, be cautious to maintain uniformity in gift value when offering options by reviewing prices beforehand.

  2. Find an appropriate time
    Add significance by choosing the right time to give a gift. Make it a surprise to boost motivation during a challenging time or thank someone for their continued dedication to the team. Send it on an important date or to mark a milestone in their personal development journey. Celebrate employees’ efforts in bettering the company to help them feel visible with their accomplishments.

  3. Add a touch of personalization with a hand-written note
    Small acts of personalization like adding a name and tailoring a note will be remembered and form an emotional connection with the company. Take the time to craft a message to your recipient. Reflect upon their achievements and highlight memorable moments within the note to emphasize your sincerity in admiring their accomplishments. Mention a specific moment or worthwhile memory to reveal you care about interacting with every employee.

Loyal customers and partners

Purpose: Thank them for their business.

Say thank you to your customers and partners for working with your business to develop brand loyalty and bolster organic word-of-mouth awareness about your brand. Convey how much you value their patronage with a personalized gift to initiate an emotional connection highlighting the importance of their business with you. Through gifting, you can reiterate your appreciation for their continued support and recognize their contribution to staying loyal to your brand.

Here are our top 3 tips when it comes to gifting customers and partners:

  1. Personalize the gift
    Your gift shouldn’t be one-size-fits-all. People have individual likes and dislikes that should be mirrored in the type of gift they are given. Signal to customers and partners that you took the time to think specifically about a gift that fits their interests. Initiate rapport with them to understand who they are and their characteristics. Let them know you were paying attention. Give something they will want to keep and enjoy to leave a positive impression, so they are more likely to repeat business with you in the future.

  2. Don’t throw your logo all over the gift
    Being over promotional leaves a bad taste in your recipients’ mouth. Corporate gifting focuses on building relationships, not pushing to sell your business in an invasive manner. Less is more when it comes to including logos on gifts. A subtle reminder is always more appealing than a logo placed front and center. Keep the trinkets given out at conferences away in this case as generic and cheap items used for marketing may be seen as insulting.

  3. Quality over quantity
    Always aim to send a high-quality gift. Quality speaks volumes about how much you value the recipient. Cheap gifts get thrown away and become an afterthought while high-quality gifts are kept for use. Low-quality items can come across as disrespectful as it may send a message that you don’t care enough about the recipient to give something long-lasting. High-quality gifts don’t have to be extravagant as useful and relevant gifts can still assist in strengthening business relations.

Photo by Toa Heftiba on Unsplash

Prospective clients

Purpose: Build a long-lasting relationship.

Your approach for sales gifting for prospective clients will be different compared to other groups as you attempt to establish a relationship. A well-timed, personalized gift can make a crucial difference in the client taking the desired action you want them to. For instance, gifts may be sent out to prospects to stand out from the crowd and encourage the booking of a meeting. Promote a consistent dialogue between you and your prospect by reminding them about you with a considerate gift that keeps you top-of-mind.

Here are our top 3 tips when it comes to gifting prospective clients:

  1. Find a balance for the cost of the gift
    When starting to establish a professional relationship, adjust the value of the gift to not come off as too cheap or borderline bribery. The gift should be an encouragement to continue business with you but not make them feel obliged to connect because of an expensive gift. Especially when forming B2B relationships, ensure that the gift value is reasonable for your circumstances. Sometimes a simple gift card for a coffee shop for a meeting venue effective without having to spend more than what’s appropriate.

  2. Focus on the presentation
    Although seemingly superfluous, packaging can make an impactful impression on recipients. An elegant, well-packaged gift indicates the amount of attention paid to the small details. Packaging experience is also an undeniably important part of gifting as the art of unboxing has been popularized in recent years. Elevate your recipient’s unboxing experience for their special gift to be just like taking a new Apple iPhone out of the box. Put thought into creating an experience around revealing the gift to heighten the enjoyment of receiving a gift.

  3. Adhere to the client’s corporate gift policy
    Every company has its own guidelines regarding what is acceptable or unacceptable gifts. Some professions forbid the receiving of gifts as it conflicts with their job responsibilities. Although you may have good intentions, do your homework and understand the recipient’s company policy to prevent doing anything illegal. Understand the protocol to avoid a public blunder that may reflect poorly on your business.

Who are the recipients of corporate gifts?
Victoria Pi

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