Day-dreaming about egg nog, holiday hams and too much pumpkin pie yet? Yeah, me neither.

But the holiday season is just around the corner and if you don’t start planning your year-end gift program strategy now, you’ll blink and it will be too late.Gift Giving

A little knowledge on business gift-giving can make it an easy task, not an overwhelming chore. Here are four tips to get your gifting plan on track:

  1. Start early for best results. Starting now gives you time to find the right gift and get the best price. You’ll have the best product selection and can take advantage of any specials or early order promotions. You’ll also avoid any additional rush charges that are associated with last minute gifts.
  2. Timing is everything. Choosing a time when gifts are traditionally not received, such as Thanksgiving or New Year’s, can have a larger impact. While clients and employees will certainly appreciate your thanks during the holidays giving at an unexpected time will really make your gift stand out.
  3. Give it gift value. Packaging and presentation are as important as the gift itself, often times making an inexpensive gift appear elegant. A mug branded with your logo may not appear as impressive as you would like. But when combined with a packet of coffee or hot chocolate and packaged in a gift bag or topped off with a festive ribbon, it takes on a higher perceived value and can create quite an impact for very little money.
  4. Make it personal. When possible, present the gift in person. Personally handing a gift to someone has a much greater impact than if a delivery person leaves it with a receptionist. Every gift, even those delivered in person, should include a card with a personal message and hand-written signature.