The Psychology of Gifting & Why It Works For Business

Throughout history, the act of offering a gift has been considered an honorable way to build relationships across various cultures, and as such, corporate gifting continues to gain prominence as a preferred sales enablement tool across the world.

A recent survey conducted to analyze the effects of gift giving on relationships showed that 43% of respondents listed improved relationships as the core advantage of gifting. When used as part of a business’s day-to-day sales-driving tactics, well-thought-through corporate gifting campaigns can lead to improved relationships and eventually, improved ROI. 

To analyze how and why gifting is so instrumental in the forging and maintenance of good business relationships, we published a whitepaper with a specific focus on its psychological effects. Read on for some of these amazing insights.

The Luxury Of Choice and The Benefit Of Experience

In our analysis of Professor Cindy Chan’s gifting-centered research, we found that while gifting is a simple exchange of items, the connotations are often more than skin deep, resulting in the triggering of emotional and psychological impulses such as recognition, appreciation, and the unenforced obligation to reciprocate. To the receiver, the giver is pouring their emotions into the item and hopes the encrypted message is received as intended. Take a bouquet of red roses, for example. An ‘I love you’ unsaid, but expressed. That is, gifts are symbolic. 

While dissecting this phenomenon, the Professor used an example of two types of gifts given: one material and the other experiential. While both exalted dopamine, the experiential gift proved more effective in prompting a response from the recipient. This is because humans value experiences and create a series of memories from them. 

Furthermore, the study highlighted how much better it is for recipients to be given an opportunity to choose their gift. While this is instrumental in avoiding unwanted and offensive gifts from crossing over, it increases the chances of the gift leaving a lasting impact on the recipient, resulting in their overall positive perception of the sender. And in business, this is the desired outcome. Our corporate gifting platform offers recipients the gift of choice by allowing them to choose from a variety of gifts for this exact reason.

The Gift’s Core Element

Having highlighted the effects of experiential and choice-focussed gifts versus material gifts, it’s essential to further dissect the kind of experience-centric gifts to offer when seeking to forge meaning and lucrative relationships with clients and prospects. This is because a ‘one size fits all approach will not only stretch the sales process but may result in lost sales altogether – much like offering suggestive gifts to a non-romantic recipient.  

When businesses are not privy to more personal information to enable them to create tailored gifts, they are advised to offer their clients, prospects, and associates gifts that tell a tale about the business and are emotion-triggers. That is, offer choice-driven and experience-giving gifts that remind the recipient of the company, and trigger an emotional response. In this case, a buy-in. The result? Increased sales and improved upselling possibilities.

Taking Email Marketing A Notch Up With Gifts

Given that over 81% of people read their mail and over 70% of those scan their mail, businesses of any size should consider having gifting campaigns as part of their email marketing strategies. A strategic approach to gifting can garner better results in comparison to traditional marketing tactics that often throw experience tailoring out the window. Instead of sending an email, send a gift invite and show the recipient that you actually are willing to give before they give to you.

The Convenience Of Automation

In a nutshell, tailored gift experiences are better and guarantee greater response rates. For this to be possible, however, businesses need to look at gift automation options to eliminate the time-consuming and admin-intensive labor that comes with manual gifting. 

Giftsenda is an international corporate gifting platform, designed to enable Marketing, Sales, and CX teams to break through the noise and make meaningful business connections – driving more revenue and conversions to increase ROI. The platform enables businesses to buy, send and track gifts worldwide from one central space while enjoying the convenience of automated gifting.  

Download our whitepaper to get a more in-depth understanding of the psychological effects of gifting, and why it should be used as part of your business strategy.

Ready to get started with corporate gifting on a global scale? Book a 30-minute demo with one of our Gift Campaign Managers to see how our gifting platform works and to get access to a free trial.