At some point, almost every business will need to purchase a baby gift to send to a new parent. Perhaps it’s a loyal customer that you want to show your appreciation to, perhaps a new customer that you are building rapport with, or perhaps an employee who you’d like to celebrate with. Whatever the reason, finding the perfect baby gift can build great relationships and form a lasting impression.
When my son was born, my husband was the vice president of a small construction company. One of their major vendors brought us a gift card for a local baby store. We were very appreciative that they thought of us, and now even 7 years later I can still remember receiving it. Now that’s staying power.
I generally do not recommend gift cards as baby gifts from businesses. There are several reasons why. The main one, is that a gift card does not show that much effort at all was put into the gift. It doesn’t even show that the company has taken the time to find out if the baby is a boy or girl. Another important factor is price. In general, you can find a very nice gift for much less than most people will end up spending on a gift card. A gift card has no “wow” factor, and the recipient will know exactly how much you spent on the gift.
So, how much should you spend on a baby gift for a customer or employee? There are no hard set rules or general etiquette rules for appropriate amounts. We, however generally recommend a 10% rule, with a minimum of $30. If the person you are purchasing for is an employee, take a look at their weekly salary. Whatever that salary is, plan to spend about 10% of that on their baby gift. That means if they make $400 a week, you would plan to spend about $40. If they make $1000 a week, plan for about $100. If they make $300 or less, plan to spend about $30 as you will find it hard to find a nice gift for less than $20-30. If you are purchasing for a customer, follow a similar rule, but look at approximately how much money their company spends with you on a typical week (if they don’t purchase weekly, average out what they do spend to get a weekly rate). You can then use 10% of the typical purchase amount.
Once you have your budget figured out, you are ready to start considering gift ideas. Try to find out as much about the new baby as you can. Is it a boy or a girl? Has the baby be named? What is his/her name? What was the birth date? Having this information will allow you to find a gift that will be extra special for the family.
When choosing a corporate baby gift, you’ll want to look for a few things. First of all, it should be something the family can use. This is very easy, as new baby’s need many things. Clothing, blankets, diapers, lotions, soaps, and much more all make fabulous baby gifts. Second, try to keep it as personal as possible. At the very least, try to incorporate the baby’s gender into the gift, unless it is not yet known. If you are able to find out baby’s name, a personalized gift can really show that you put some effort into finding out about the baby. However, make absolutely sure that you have baby’s name spelled right before sending a personalized gift. It would be better to send a gift without personalization than one with incorrect personalization. The final, and most important thing you should look for in a corporate baby gift is the “Wow” factor. A gift that will make them say “wow!” is much more likely to be remembered for a long time than a gift that is just like every other gift.
Once you have found the perfect gift, don’t forget to include a personal gift note. It doesn’t have to be elaborate. A simple note that says, “Congratulations on the birth of ________. Sincerely, Your Friends at ____________________” will work just fine.
While it is not a requirement to send a gift, doing so will build good relations with the recipient far beyond the money invested in the gift. It’s definitely an investment worth making.
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