Chivalry is not dead, people. Back in the day, (when there was no such thing as email addresses or iPhones), we were forced to make human to human contact (imagine that) and would probably hand deliver a gift as a way of networking. We can agree that this kind of gesture might not be as typical these days but that it would be a great way to stand out.
Here are some ways to let your potential next client know that you’d love to work with them.
Something they mentioned/Website Intel
I realize I’m not handing you a specific gift on a silver platter with this one, but the idea is to be creative! If you want to do some brainstorming before you make your purchase, the #1 place to look is their website. What is the history of Bob’s Plumbing? What is the meaning behind his logo? Has Bob told you that he randomly has a habit of collecting hot sauces? Introduce him to a local hot sauce he’s never had before! You get there I’m going with this–LISTEN CLOSELY! It’s all about the small details–the ones that end up an important way to let Bob know you value his work and that he’s not just another client to you.
2. A super creative offsite for Bob and his team members
One of the best ways to build morale in the workplace is to establish teamwork and/or some healthy competition.
Some of the most effective offsites I’ve seen:
Scavenger Hunt: Split up and do a scavenger hunt around the city! This is a great way for others to sector off in smaller groups and get to know each other. After everyone is done working together to solve mysteries and find clues, the game leads to a bar for happy hour. It’s a win-win.
Karaoke Night: Is there a better way to bond than finding out your coworkers are also obsessed with Shania Twain? Everyone is forced to show a vulnerable side of themselves and just let loose for a change.
An Escape room: What do you mean being locked in a room with your coworkers after hours doesn’t sound fun? Lighten up, these are crazy popular these days and almost every group comes out with inside jokes. This is another clue-finding offsite with a side of adrenaline.
3. A (quite literal) growth suggestion.
A.K.A., a plant pun. I know, this is really cheesy–but didn’t it make you smile? That is the goal, right? A plant grows, Bob’s business grows along with it. Wholesome. Plants bring life to all spaces and I would argue to your gift giving abilities.
4. A nice bottle of wine or liquor
Even if Bob isn’t necessarily a drinker, it’s a pretty safe gesture that can be passed down to his employees if it isn’t his cup of tea. Hopefully someone from his front desk or staff can give you a tip on what his favorites are, that way it’s not a total shot in the dark. If you’re totally clueless though, you can never really go wrong with a quality Malbec from Argentina or a Cabernet Sauvignon from Chile. If he’s a whiskey man, make sure you get a quality bottle since he probably knows his stuff.
At the end of the day, the gesture itself can go a long way and really help you stand out to your potential next client. Test it out and see how many more leads you bring in by gifting!