Not to be one that sounds like the Christmas Grinch, but I really hate it when suppliers or people I do business with send me a Christmas hamper. 

Christmas is actually my favourite day of the year and is much more special to me than even my own birthday. As a child growing up in a very European family, Christmas eve was the major celebration in our house. It really was a magical time, with amazing food, gifts (yes we opened them on Christmas Eve), and family coming together.

Christmas gifts are a wonderful idea, to show someone that you really care about them and the business that they may have potentially done with you. Yet a lot of people resort to the lazy option of sending a hamper in lieu of actually taking the time to send a thoughtful gift that would have a much greater profound impact on the recipient.

Here are the 3 key mistakes businesses make when sending a Christmas Hamper:

Why I hate Christmas Hampers

1. Generic 

Most hampers look like they have just been picked out of a standard catalogue. They have the usual $20- $30 bottle of wine, some biscuits and jams, and cookies. The only difference is the size of the hamper which is usually tied to the amount spent. This year I received more than three hampers, and the majority of the contents all looked like they were from the supplier.

2. Little thought

Very often there is little thought gone into whether the person would like to receive what is listed in the hamper. At the moment, I am on a little health kick, trying to cut out sweets leading into the Christmas break, so I can indulge on Christmas Eve. Yet most of the hampers are filled with sugar-laden treats that I end up just distributing to the team. While I might be looking to cut out sugar, there are many that have particular allergies or restrictions around certain foods.

3. Not Tailored

Anyone who has spent a little time with me will know at one point or another, the conversation will inevitably end up with whisky or maybe a memorable experience. Yet there is only one occasion this year that someone took the time to do a little digging to find out what would be a meaningful gift for me. The gift I received was from an experienced-based Japanese restaurant that has a lovely selection of Japanese Whisky’s.

The aim when selecting any gift for a client is to place yourself in the client’s shoes and ask yourself what would they love to receive. Intel is everything as one of my mentors “Simon Bowen” would say. Once you have this information you can look for ways to surprise and delight your client in a way that will really blow them away.

Here are three ways to make sure your gift is an absolute winner:


  • Make it Unique, Not Generic

Refrain from choosing the easy option. Definitely steer away from things that are one of a thousand type products. Unique gifts will show your client that you have put some real thought into what they would like. We have all heard the saying “it is the thought that counts”.

  • Be thoughtful, Not Thoughtless 

Look for off-the-beaten-track gift ideas. If it is a restaurant, look for a genre that the client likes, then try and find your city’s best-kept secret, which is down a mysterious lane. Something that they will be able to retell the story to their family and friends later. This will be a gift that keeps on giving. 

  • Make it Personal 

The key to having a great gift is to make sure it is personalised. You can try and ask some strategic questions of the client, about what they might be doing over the Christmas period. Listening for clues as to the type of things that they would like to receive, but have yet to splash out on themselves. If this doesn’t yield the results you are after, look for a third-party connection that you can be more direct with. It will leave them scratching their head, wondering how you knew. 

I know it seems like a lot of work to go to, particularly at a time of year when everyone is so time-poor. The truth is, you should be looking to keep mental notes on your clients through all of your interactions with them. Storing them in a CRM is a great way to have the intel at your fingertips when you need them, whether it is Christmas, an anniversary, or a birthday.

If you are looking for ways to surprise and delight clients in a way that is simply unforgettable, join the Google Review Mastery Program. In the program, we show you how to create remarkable experiences for your clients that will make the idea of going to one of your competitors simply unthinkable.