Using creative gifts to market during the holidays

Marketing during the holiday season may require a little extra thought than during normal times.

Marketing during the holiday season may require a little extra thought than during normal times.

You could get holiday cards for your clients, but how will that stand out when they are already receiving an abundance of these items? 

If you are looking to set yourself apart from the competition, one good way to do so is to provide your clients with creative gifts during the holidays. Standing out doesn't require you to break the bank, but a little bit of innovation can go a long way. 

Targeted gift cards
Buying people gift cards can result in some great Christmas presents, but if you are looking to stand out, keep in mind the dangers of being generic. Going to a place like Target to buy scores of the same gift card represents the lowest common denominator, real estate expert Jennifer Snyder wrote in Inman Magazine. Instead of taking this path, Snyder, a real estate marketing consultant, suggested using a more targeted approach.

If you are working with a lot of transplants, or people who have recently moved from another location, consider sending them gift cards to a great restaurant, the author wrote. Working with many families who have young children? Consider sending them cards to a local toy store. Before buying anything, be sure to consider the recipient.

Harness hometown sentimentality
Another way you can stand out to clients is to hire someone to create a custom map of a certain town where you do lots of business, Snyder noted. If you have an abundance of transactions in one particular area, you can potentially find a service provider through a place like Elance or Etsy, and have them develop a state map that contains some sort of item to make the city stand out.

Before you hire anyone to make a custom map of any jurisdiction, knowing your territory is important. By having this information, you may be able to further customize the map by containing key data on the region. While some of this - like the logos of the local sports teams - comes from being in the area, there is other helpful information, including mortgage records and warranty deeds, you can obtain by working with CRS Data. To learn more about CRS Data, click here.

Personalize gifts
Aside from developing custom maps and buying gift cards that are a good fit for the recipient's personality, there are many other ways to purchase gifts that have a personal touch. One way to stay on a client's good side is to use a little humor. For example, if you have a client that is somewhat rugged, consider getting them a membership to the Dollar Shave Club, suggests Forbes contributor John Hall. 

Hall, whose company Influence & Co. focuses on helping individuals develop thought leadership in their respective fields, emphasized that a gift like that is tough to forget. As a result of receiving that gift, the client might think of Hall's firm right when he wakes up.

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