Most hated corporate gifts and what you can give instead

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Now that another holiday season is upon us in Singapore, corporate gifts are once again, a major part of the marketing strategies and tools in many businesses. When it comes to corporate gifts planning and selection, one step that is commonly overlooked is to ensure that you first know what not to give. Even for the experienced corporate gifts planners, it is still possible to give out the wrong gift every once in a while. Fortunately, with some careful planning and research, this can be avoided. Keeping a list of “DO-NOT-GIVE” items as corporate gifts is always a good idea, not only does it serve as a reminder, you might actually just be able to get a few ideas out of them from time to time.

And if you’re new in corporate gifts planning and selection, this list becomes even more important. This is a list that could vary from client to client, but for starters, a general list works just fine. And we just happen to have a list with us right here and we would love to share it with you. Before we start though, one thing to keep in mind is that the gifts should be as “politically correct” as possible, don’t allow even the slightest chance that it *might* offend someone, even when that someone is not a client or in your client base.

Now, let’s look at the most hated corporate gifts and what to replace them with:


Do Not Give… Cheap pens that are covered with your company logos

Do Give… Quality pens.


Pens are one of the most common corporate gifts, and it’s common for a reason. It is practical, not to mentioned suitable for just about everyone even in this digital age. To be honest, I’ve never spent a dime on pens since I started working, and I don’t ever want to. But that doesn’t mean that receiving cheap, terrible looking pens does not irritate me. It does. A lot. Just because pens are useful, doesn’t mean the quality doesn’t matter. We’ve all come across that one pen in our lives that just made us wonder “why?” – and it’s even worse when it’s covered in business logos in a hideous way.

A quality pen, however, can go a long way. Be classic and elegant with your business logo placement, this will go a long way, your recipient will appreciate the quality of the pen, as well as the design. The thoughtfulness, quality and class will then be associated with your brand.


Related (Why Personalized Gifts Are Better)


Do Not Give… Apparels with your logo on it.

Do Give…   Useful accessories.


The only impression from your clients when they receive any kind of apparels with your business on it is “Why?” and they will likely either end up in a trash can directly or never see the light of day. Some people already are reluctant to wear apparels of their own company or alma mater, expecting people to “represent” (Because let’s face it, that’s what it is) other business they might or might not have a history working with seems to be unrealistic.

Accessories, on the other hand, are more likely to be appreciated but only if it’s well design, good looking and practical. This, just like almost all corporate gifts, requires elegant and classy logo placements. Things like earphones, keys holder or ID holders would be a safe bet.


Do Not Give… Cloth napkins

Do Give…   Small cleansing tools for computers


Cloth napkins, or as far as corporate gifts go, anything that is remotely relevant to personal taste in fashion should be avoided. Because you will never make everyone happy, more often than that, there will always be more frowns than smiles when they see the design, colors or even the size of it. Save yourself and everyone some troubles, just forget about it. But you know what’s irrelevant to personal taste in fashion and very practical at the same time? Small cleansing tools for laptops and computers. The chance is, your recipient has at least one of those and likely don’t have any tool to properly dust off the dust or do any level of cleaning. And all used computer can use a little light cleaning and dusting.



By now we hope you have a rough idea about what to avoid and what to achieve in corporate gifts giving. If you’re still struggling with it, ring us anytime and let’s chat about it!