Showing your appreciation to clients is a great way to retain your business and maintain a long lasting advisor-client relationship. Sometimes saying ‘thank you’ is enough, but occasionally, you may choose to show your appreciation with a gift.
Choosing the right gift can be tricky, if you are looking for a budget-friendly gift that does not seem sycophantic.
We spoke to some financial advisors on gifts they give to their clients on various occasions. Here is what they had to say.
Kolkata-based Bharat Bagla of Bees Network generally sends health related gifts to his clients. He says, “Last Diwali, I gifted my clients a weighing machine so that they can watch their weight. I have also gifted my clients copper water bottles and leather tissue boxes in the past. I spend close to Rs.500 per client on such gifts.”
Nisha Sanghavi of Fynomics believes in sending eco-friendly gifts. “Last Diwali, I gifted a greeting card of seed paper that turns into tulsi when soaked in water. My clients really appreciated it.” Nisha has also gifted nutrition bars, with the message, ‘Have a healthy Diwali’, to her clients.
She also send customised gifts to clients based on their religion. “I present a chocolate box to my Christian clients on Christmas and sweets to Muslim clients during Eid.”
Tejal Gandhi of Money Matters believes sending birthday gifts are a gesture of remembrance. She says, “I send them handmade chocolates and stationery items on their children’s birthdays. I send handwritten cards to clients who do not live in Mumbai. I make sure that these gifts are not so expensive that it would look like I am trying to buy their attention.”
Gajendra Kothari of Etica Wealth Management feels gifts are a good way to maintain a healthy relationship with clients. “I send birthday gifts depending on the gender of the client. While I prefer gifting accessories such as cufflinks or a tie to male clients, I send cakes or a purse to female clients.” He spends Rs.3,000-Rs.5,000 each on HNI clients and Rs.1,000-Rs.1,500 on retail clients.
Weddings and house warming
Tejal Gandhi thinks flowers are the best gift to give on weddings. “Flowers symbolise good wishes, so I generally give a bouquet for a client’s wedding.”
Nisha Sanghavi says that she prefers gifting a nameplate when a client is having a house warming. “Such a gift goes well with the occasion and need of the client.”
Gifts for no formal occasion
Jayant Vidwans gifts his clients during review meetings. “I gift them some informative book. I generally prefer gifting books because it is something which will last and also increase their knowledge on financial topics,” he says.
Seconding Jayant’s views, Shifali Satsangee, of Funds Veda, says she also believes in giving gifts without a formal occasion. “I always give a gift to my clients in the review meetings which typically take place in January. It makes them value your gesture even more. This year I gave them a diary, a pen and a key chain with my logo on top.”
Kavitha Menon too believes in gifting without a formal occasion. She says, “Gifting on a formal occasion lacks the personal touch. So usually when I travel, I pick some souvenirs for my clients. Like when I visited Bhutan, I got my clients small wind chimes, which they really appreciated.”
Gajendra Kothari sends gifts to clients when their portfolios achieve a certain milestone. For instance, he sends a crystal tree whenever his client’s portfolio crosses a certain milestone.
Other gift ideas
Personalised business-card holder: A cardholder with your client’s name imprinted on it will make a good gift.
Handwritten note: There is nothing better to show gratitude towards your clients than a handwritten note. You can write thank you, birthday and notes.
An office utility: If you want clients to keep you in mind, gift them something to display or use in their office, like a paperweight, paintings, coasters, and so on.
A goodie basket: A basket of scented soaps and candles is also a great gift as it maintains the right professional-personal balance.
Plants: Plants are a great eco-friendly gift as clients can display it in their office or home. Plants make the right statement and have a high feel-good quotient.