Last week I enjoyed a nice burst in weekly sales from Administrative Assistant's Week. I've had 2 $100 plus sales this week for door prizes. Pottery, as a category, is an excellent corporate gift. I wanted to share a few pointers that have contributed to my success in this market.
- About 1/3 of my sales are purchased by a company or organization
- Corporate gifts are all about price. You approach this market with "How much do you have allocated for this gift(s)?" The IRS limit is $25. Some companies stick with this number. You can adjust this number by adding a packing/processing fee if they want to spend more. I've added $10 to $15 for this in some situations.
- I have had ranges from $6 to $150. The medium gift value is $25.
- To reach this market you need to find out their gifting amount needs and show them what you have in their price range. It's all about providing a solution. You are the problem solver! Corporate gifts are for the most part fulfilling an obligation or creating an obligation. The key word here "obligation".
- Corporate Gift Opportunities:
1. Thank you gifts for important customers or referrals
1. Christmas (largest market)
2. Reward for a specific event (large purchase like a house or specific referral)
3. Constant referrals. Examples: orthodontist , drug reps (to doctors), attorneys (like someone in Admiralty law derives most of their cases from referrals). In
general, many highly specialized professions depend on referrals from more generalized professionals. These professions reward their referral base
generously at Christmas and often for a specific referral.
2. Administrative Assistant Week, Bosses Week, Teach Appreciation Week, Nurse's/Health Care Professional Week
3. Retirement Gifts or Landmark Years of Service (25 years, etc) Gifts
4. Door prizes at conferences/meetings
5. Conference/meeting gifts - items given out to everyone in attendance
How do you get this market? Okay as some would say "extraordinary circumstances" have helped me with some of this business. I had some of these customers before in my previous business and this segment of my business has been enhanced by family connections. But SOME of this business has come my way just by being available and having products that are differentiated (handmade) and the ability to fulfill in the specified price target. I used to really chase this type of business but now it's all from past business customers, word of mouth and referrals. A storefront is an advantage but emails with photographs/price points could work too. You have to make the contact and find out their gifting needs. I don't think too many business customers come to shows looking but might pick up a flyer entitled "Corporate Solutions to Gifting". You have to reach their "top of mind" as a corporate/organization gift solution provider.
Another thing is some sort of packing. Doesn't have to be expensive. I use brown craft bags embellished with curling ribbon.
Some sales made in the past year:
- 250 $20 small platters for a yearly conference
- 150 $10 small bowl for favors for a commemoration dinner
- 32 $25 bowls/platters for hospital staff (given by health care company)
- 18 $40 Trays for Board of Directors at a hospital
- 2 $100 Bowls for Administrative Assistant Week (collection from whole office for 2 secretaries)
- 12 $25 Bowls for door prizes Insurance meeting
- 1 $75 standing order for any piece I choose for a realtor when they make a sale (3-5 orders a month)
- 70 $3 small Mississippi ornaments for conference favors
- 120 $10 Necklaces for Christmas gifts for all secretaries in an insurance company
- 23 $20 bowls for public works secretaries
- 35 $6 small bowls for teachers from Beta Club
- 60 $20 bowls for teachers given by PT
- 80 $75 trays for attorneys given by an attorney for referrals
Just thought I would share this. It's a constant flow of business for me. If you have any questions feel free to ask or want specific information email me at Sharon@dirtroadspottery.com.