Corporate events are vital to building long-lasting relationships and a strong network in the business world. Of course, with a pandemic looming over our heads, our events have become online. Yet, the spirit of a corporate event needs to be kept alive.
Well, corporate events were extremely tricky to manage and execute in the first place. Hundreds of days of planning and strategizing go behind making an event successful. The planning, research, design, coordination, and ultimately the execution make up the manageable parts of corporate event planning.
What makes a corporate event stand out is what the audiences took away from your event—psychologically, philosophically, and materialistically.
Of course, your event planning will consist of inviting speakers influential enough to leave a profound impact on the minds of the people attending the event. However, the memories of the event may fade away over time if something tangible is associated with them.
I remember attending a TedX conference a few years ago. While I took notes of some of the talks there and remember what the speakers spoke about, I tend to bring back those memories by looking at a branded bag filled with goodies that they gifted to us during the event.
So, for a successful event, it is vital to allow the attendees to associate a sentimental value with the event. And to make sure of that, as a company, it is needed to plan the gifts.
Planning the right corporate gifting strategy may come as one of the most neglected elements of an event. However, these are the items that your attendees will associate your event with a few years down the line.
Planning gifts for staff and clients almost goes in line with planning the event. So the road to a successful gifting strategy moves very much parallel to the road to a successful event planning strategy. Let’s find out how.
5 Elements of Gift Planning for a Corporate Event
1. Goal of the Event
The first step to planning an event is to understand or establish the event’s actual goal. Well, even for planning gifts for office staff and clients, this is the first step too. You need to understand the goal of the event while deciding how to send out gifts to the attendees.
If it is for the inauguration of a new office building is inaugurated, an appropriate gift could be merchandise branded with the company logo for the event, say, a diary or a mug.
If it is a social event, conducted to raise awareness on some issue as part of a CSR initiative, you may choose to give t-shirts to the employees and clients.
To plan gifts for an event, it is important to make the gifting strategy aligned to the goal of the event. The gifts that are being sent out should complement the goal of the event,
2. Theme of the Event
The next step to planning an event once you have established a goal is to decide on a theme for the event. Similarly, to plan a gifting strategy for the event, it is crucial to consider that theme. The gifts must be aligned to the theme of the event.
If it is a CSR event themed at raising awareness for breast cancer, the gifts must be branded with a pink bow.
In the digital world, hashtags are the new cool. So corporate events have themes like #FightingTheWFHBurnout, where all the talks would be relevant to the theme. A social media marketing event could have a theme called #MakeItSocial.
Sending out gifts based on hashtag themes is, in fact, even easier. The gift packages would just be branded with the hashtag, and the recipients would associate it with the event.
3. Knowing the Audience
This is the most critical step of event planning. Because of course, the audience will make your event successful more than the hosts and the speakers.
While planning the gifts also, this is an important step. Certain events have only your employees in attendance, like your company annual meets. Product launches, on the other hand, will see a lot of clients in the audience. A CSR event will have an audience outside of your company and corporate circle, depending on the kind of CSR activity. A management committee event will have only board members and CXO-level employees for the event.
While planning the gift, the demographics of the attendees are to be kept in mind. You cannot plan the same gifts for staff and clients. The chief guest of the event will not be gifted in the same way as the employees.
This is another important step in the event planning timeline—similarly, an important step in the timeline of gift planning for the attendees.
Once you have decided on the goal of the gift, the theme of the gift, and the demographics of the recipients, it is important to discuss the budgets.
Now, there are multiple ways to do this. You can have a different budget as per the roles mentioned above, i.e., different budgets for employees, clients, attendees, speakers, and so on. You can also set a common budget for every category. Well, you may do this as it suits your bill, literally.
5. Deciding the Gift
The last and the most important step of event planning is executing the ‘plan’. The last and the most important step of gift planning is deciding what is to be given to each individual and ensuring the gift reaches them timely.
As per the above categories, you can decide on a particular gift for each category of the audience. It is a fairly simple task and wouldn’t even require any effort, right? Wrong!
With mass gifting strategies, there are a lot of things that could go wrong. Let us say, you plan on adding perfumes to your gift package. There can be a massive confusion in the number of men’s perfumes to be added and that of women’s perfumes to be added. You may plan on adding a packet of nuts to packages while there could be attendees allergic to nuts.
Thankfully, Evabot is here for your rescue. When you have the list of all the invitees ready with you, you simply add the list to Eva, and the system will shoot out emails to the attendees containing customized chat links. When the recipient chats with Eva, it will take note of their likes, dislikes, and preferences and accordingly prepare gift packages suiting your budget. Once that is done, it will be packaged under your product, brand, or the hashtag that is the theme of your event.
All in all, you only have to plan your event, and parallelly, Evabot shall plan your gifts for you.
So, sign-up for the free 14-day trial of Evabot and plan your first event towards an effective gifting strategy.