Gift Hampers – An Ideal Solution To Corporate Christmas Presents

Despite Autumn being just around the corner, in the world of business now is the time to start thinking about Christmas. While festive offers and Noel based niceties might be at the forefront of your business plans it’s also important to spare a thought for those loyal clients and contacts who help keep you in the black the other 364 days of the year. Gifting with corporate gifts is not only a great way to thank your clientele but also gives you an opportunity to strengthen your brand message and give customers an insight into your plans for the year ahead. So what to give?

Depending on your business and client, some gifts may lend themselves better than other in terms of corporate presents. For manufacturers of artisan products such as cheese, wine, bread and beer, the logical choice would be to gift clients with items from your own range. You could even go one step further and create a limited edition Christmas product specifically for corporate recipients.

Corporate Christmas gifts aren’t just applicable to businesses who make things. Restaurants, sports clubs and companies working in the great outdoors can offer their clients a hands on Christmas experience be it an all expenses paid for meal, sporting social or outdoor team building day. Offering clients a hands on approach doesn’t just offer a Christmas gift with a twist but also gives them an invaluable insight into your business which – if done properly – can cement their loyalty for years to come.

Finally, for companies in finance, admin and law it can often be difficult to find a gift that’s original yet still represents your company ethos. Here, gift hampers are the perfect solution. Wicker baskets that can be filled with treats and drinks of your choosing, gift hampers can also be stamped with your company logo.

Furthermore, you could also try your hand at some up selling for the year ahead; packing your hamper with sale sheets and catalogues that reiterates your company message in a fun, friendly and festive way; a gesture that will hopefully stay with them for the rest of the year.

3 Keys to Building a Persuasive Sales Presentation

Ted took to the front of the room at a recent presentation workshop. It was his turn to deliver his persuasive sales presentation. Standing at one end of the long oval table and making eye contact with his five sales colleagues he began to lay out the reasons why an imaginary prospect (us) should purchase his system.

“Finally” he said as neared the end of his talk “if you implement our system we will improve your process and as a result reduce your cost.”

“OK” I said “but prove it.”

“What do you mean?” Ted asked.

“You’ve made an assertion” I said “that you will improve my process and reduce my cost but an assertion will not persuade anyone. You need to prove it”

And this “prove it” approach, I believe, is at the heart of the persuasive sales presentation. Time and again I have seen sale representatives deliver a laundry list of assertions to their prospects. “You should buy our product because it has high quality ratings, a competitive price, we have a quick turn on delivery, great follow-up service” and on and on and on.

But the prospect will likely not find that kind of presentation the least bit persuasive because none of the assertions are supported by any evidence.

Let’s look at three methods we can use within our sales presentation to prove our assertions and persuade our prospects. These methods include the statistic, the story and the quote.

Statistics. Research shows (Armstrong 2008, Rossiter &Percy 1980, Kelly & Hoel 1991) that statistics and charts are excellent persuasive tools for a presentation. However, presenting statistics can be tricky. Prospects will often find data meaningless if it’s not put into context for them. Whenever using statistics to persuade your prospect I suggest explaining exactly why the data is relevant to them. So if we use Ted as an example he might begin to persuade his prospect that he can improve their process and reduce their cost, by saying something like this: “For every $1.00 you spend buying printed marketing materials you spend $6.00 managing that material.” You should provide the research source for your data on your power point slide and now put that data in context for them – “what this means Mr. Prospect is that the true cost of your printed marketing materials isn’t in the cost of your brochures and sell sheets but in the managing of the inventory, the processing of requisitions and the distribution to end users”

Now you’ve delivered data that the prospect will find compelling because if they are purchasing printed marketing materials you have shown them exactly how this data relates to them. That kind of data will get the attention of the prospect and so we have begun the process of persuading them that improving their process can, in fact, reduce their cost. The next step in the persuasion process would be to tell this prospect a story.

Stories, or if you prefer case studies or examples are, to the surprise of most, more persuasive than statistics (Pennington & Hastie 1991, Lee & Leets 2002, Green & Brock 2000). I realize that’s not logical but human nature being what it is people love stories. We love to tell them, we love to listen to them and as a result we find stories both interesting and persuasive.

But that same research also shows that the most persuasive presentations combine both stories and statistics. So Ted’s story could come right after delivering his statistic on cost savings and could look something like this: “At this time last year ABC company was in the same situation as you, they utilized a highly manual process that included physical inventory counts, product requests that came in via email or phone call and distribution that was handled by Marketing personnel who spent eight hours a week focused on managing print. Today ABC has transitioned to our automated system, now we manage their inventory and distribution, orders are placed within the system and reports are available in real-time 24/7. Today, the Marketing personnel spend just two hours a week focused on print.”

Now we’ve given our prospect a compelling statistic and a story (real life example) that supports that statistic. We’ve painted a picture for them of two worlds, the inefficient manual world that ABC company used to live in (and that the prospect currently lives in) and the efficient automated world that ABC company lives in today (and that awaits the prospect if they transition to Ted’s system). If you’ve done your homework and can accurately describe to the customer the pain points within their current situation you’ll notice their heads nodding in agreement as you verbally detail their current struggles. One more step and our persuasive case is complete.

A quote from an industry expert, a credible research company or a customer can have a tremendous impact on your prospect. When you quote an expert who supports the case you’re making it is as if you pull that person into the conversation to help you persuade the prospect. So once again, returning to our example, after giving the prospect the compelling statistic and then delivering the descriptive story Ted could show the prospect a power point slide that has ABC company’s logo and a quote from ABC’s CFO that reads “The savings in both time and money have far exceeded our expectations!”

Now, after Ted makes his initial assertion, that his system will improve process and reduce cost, he can prove it to the prospect. By combining a statistic with a story and a quote Ted builds a persuasive case that proves to the prospect that he can, and in fact has, delivered on the promise to improve process and reduce cost.

When designing your next sales presentation be sure to avoid simply making assertions. Instead, use the statistic, the story and the quote to build a persuasive case and prove it to your prospect.

How to Look Presentable For a Job Interview

With the economy at a standstill, many businesses are turning people away and cutting the number of people they need in order to function. This has created an enormous rift in the population and many people have fallen below the poverty line. Whether you are in the contract slitting and OEM slitting business or whether you have a degree in dentistry, finding work nowadays is harder than ever before. Sometimes, grades and previous employment just will not cut it and people have to rely on other ways to get jobs that they did not have to rely on earlier. One of the most important things that employers are looking for is good work appearance, especially when they have to work with customers and generally represent the company.

Luckily, looking nice does not mean changing your entire appearance and there are many little things you can do to make yourself look more professional, especially when you are going into a job interview. One of these tips is to go shopping and find new clothes that are work appropriate. The appropriateness of your attire depends entirely on what kind of business you are trying to land a job in. Working in a department store requires completely different clothes than working in a fast food restaurant or an office building. Look at the people who work there already and observe the clothes you see them wearing on a day-to-day basis.

Likewise, good hygiene is extremely important when you show up to your work interview. This does not just mean taking showers regularly, but also keeping yourself looking clean and presentable and keeping your clothes clean and without tears or holes. Keeping your fingernails clean or painted and keeping your hair looking nice is a great first step in looking your best at your interview. It is also a good idea to schedule an appointment with a hair stylist to get a new haircut or hair style before a very important interview or to get a facial so you look and feel your best.

Also, speaking will also get you major brownie points when it comes to your interview. Companies are not going to hire people who curse a lot or who cannot speak English very well. Therefore, make sure you make an impressive statement with the way you conduct yourself in front of your soon to be bosses and treat the with the respect that they deserve.

In the end, appearances are not everything but they can certainly help you land the job of your dreams. By making small steps towards looking your best and wearing the appropriate dress wear, you can make sure that you are a step above the competition and more favorable in the companies eyes. Obviously you should not completely change your appearance and attitude to get a job or else you will not be satisfied at the end of the day, so make sure that regardless of what clothes you are wearing, you stay true to yourself and your values.