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Intentional B2B/B2C Gift Giving

There are 3 simple yet important questions we should be asking ourselves as we begin thinking of the holiday season and the end of the year. They help us remember that gift giving is not about the giver, it's about the recipient. In business holiday giving we tend to forget this. We make it about our brand or our convenience. There is a way to make your gift about your recipient while still building your brand.

We start with our 3 simple questions...

1. “Why are we giving gifts?” - As businesses, we give to show appreciation to those we partner and work with as well as say thank you to our clients.

2. “Who are we giving to?” - It's good to write a list so you know how many gifts you are giving, but I am asking you to really think about the people you are giving to. What do they do, like, need, appreciate? Answering this helps with the what and the how.

3. “How are you going to give?” - You can give what everyone else is giving (cue the cakes and poinsettias) or you can give something that hits on at least one or all five of the following criteria to make your business gifts worth it.


1 | Make it Usable … so they will keep it and use it throughout the year

Think of items that someone will use in their daily lives so that they are reminded of you. When picking the item, think of ways to elevate the item. Create a custom scent candle from Auburn Candle Co. This is not the time to think cheap and generic for gifts.

2 | Make it Local … so you are supporting other businesses

Think of businesses you have relationships with or local businesses that make custom or local products. This could be local artisans who paint, draw, calligraphy or it can be breweries, distilleries, and roasters. If you have a smaller number of gifts to give, pull together items from various local businesses into a basket.

3 | Make it Personalized … to the recipient

When we say personalized, we don’t mean with your logo. We mean personalized to the recipient. You do want your logo on the product but don’t make it the most prominent part of the gift. Subtle is effective. Make it about the recipient and it will be more memorable (and usable).

4 | Make it Memorable - so they associate you with something they like

Think of items that relate to your products, services, or industry. Consider customizing something special for your recipients. This could be something that you specialize in or something that is special to the recipient. If you have a larger budget, consider your gift being something that keeps giving like a monthly subscription.

5 | Make it Affordable … so you don’t blow the budget or don’t have to cut anyone

Consider the logistics and cost depending on the location and quantity of gifts. If you have 20 individual recipients, you can do more personalized and larger gifts. If you have a high number of recipients or each recipient is made up of a group of people, you will pick an item that can be duplicated easily.


If you are in an industry that helps clients achieve a milestone (like purchasing a home) consider getting an ornament or home item that is customized to them. You could get their new home drawn on an ornament.

If your recipients are busy and have had enough lunchroom desserts, deliver a healthy dinner or casserole to their home or business. Have a local caterer or cafe prepare all of the meals. We love The Cup & Saucer.

If you have a team to give to, consider a happy hour in a basket. You can use local breweries and pair it with branded Koozies that have fun phrases. Or you could purchase liquor from a local distillery, add in the mixings and a branded drink recipe card.

If you have many recipients who sit at a desk or enjoy technology, order desk phone chargers that can be customized/personalized.

If your recipient(s) use stationery or take notes, consider a branded leather journal with your logo embossed on the back or desk stationery customized with their name, letter initial, or logo.

Many people get cold when they work. Consider purchasing a large number of blankets or oversized shawls and having them customized with a subtle logo or company name in corner or sewn on leather patch/tag

If you have photography skills, take pictures of key landmarks in your area and design a calendar. You can add in Did You Know Facts for each month. We love using Artifact Uprising.

Knowing we all have keys, elevate your recipients’ key chains with a customized Leather key chain with quote or phrase with logo on back.

Think about what wooden items you could get customized for your recipients. We love custom bookmarks, coasters and key chains from KS Handmade. Take it up a notch and have wooden boards engraved and then have charcuterie created on them and delivered. We love using Grazer Co.

Invest your budget in getting a custom design or quote made (watercolor, sketch, paint, etc.), print the 4x6 or 5x7 cards locally and frame each one. We love Ellen Davis’ Watercolor artwork. You could also get your graphic designer to design a special design or quote.

If you are looking for something sweet, purchase these cute Hot Chocolate on a Stick from Uncommon Goods. You can wrap 2 up with some marshmallows, mugs, and even a mini bottle of Baileys for some holiday fun!

Plants are good for any work or home environment. Consider gifting a plant and include your brand on a ceramic message pop or customize the pot itself. You can also do a plant in a basket and tie a tag to it with your brand. For a longer term gift that relates to your retention plan, consider a plant subscription.


And if you are still struggling to curate a nice gift, check out a few companies who specialize in curating gift boxes and are intentional about gift giving, Loved and Found and Marigold and Grey.


We hope you find these tips and suggestions helpful as you begin your holiday gift giving. Be sure to take a look at our Business Gift Guide on Pinterest for additional ideas.

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