With incentive and vacation season in full swing, it’s important to note that, to many attendees, the gifts are just as important of an experience as the trip itself. Having an incentive gifting campaign that complements your brand and vision for the trip creates a lasting memory for all involved. Keep these tips in mind to make sure your gift experience exceeds expectations.
1: Know when to be on trend, and when to stay classic
What it comes down to is knowing your objectives and knowing the circumstances. A good strategy to keep your gifts fresh and relevant is to mix it up a little. A recent example of this was an incentive program where gifts were a centerpiece of the trip. In addition to the more traditional gifts like cufflinks and jewelry, attendees also received high-tech gadgets like the Amazon Echo (a trendy and useful favorite this year) and their choice of Bose products. Attendees also received pairs of some of this summer’s top shoes in understated, classic styles so they could be worn off the resort as well.
2: Packaging, presentation, post-trip fulfillment
You’ve may have heard the phrase “you eat with your eyes.” Apply that same principle to your gifting strategies. You can have the coolest product, but if the packaging and presentation leave something to be desired, you’ll leave a mediocre impression on the recipient. Since a large amount of the packaging work is often done on-site, it is prudent to do the legwork beforehand and document a detailed plan for the gift presentation. Do you have a room-drop gift with multiple pieces that need to be set up just-so? Do the welcome amenities need extra tissue paper in order to look nice in their tote? Do the gifts require personalized gift tags or amenity cards? Be sure to detail how everything should be set up in a document so that everyone is on the same page. But when the gifts have been given and the team is back on their way home, your job may not be done just yet. If attendees have made gift selections on-site, you’ll need to quickly place and fulfill their orders with your vendors. Don’t consider the project a wrap until each post-trip gift is ordered, packaged, shipped and received. Then, pat yourself on your back for a job well done.
3: Be an expert
There is a time to defer to an executive and a time to push for something different. Establish yourself as an expert and a valued partner in the incentive experience, not just someone who places orders. If you think things may be heading in the wrong direction with gift selections, don’t be afraid to gently say so and present the options you feel will work the best for the trip, theme, and budget.