Monday, November 8, 2010

A Special Gift

 I simply love getting gifts. Used to call them "presents"- a legacy of birthday parties in my childhood days. Anything wrapped in coloured paper is enough to get me smiling silly. But over the years, I realise that there are some gifts  that really make us feel very special. It is not the gift itself. It is the thought behind the gift.

Fresh from the Diwali shower of dry fruits , chocolates, wines and barfis, sometimes I feel we have massified the art of gifting to the point where it has become a tick on the checklist. I did that too.

And then this morning, I got a gift . A simple book. City of Djinns. With a small note in gilt ink that said- Welcome to your new city and your new life.

What was it about this that made me feel so special?
a) The person realised that the change to a new city and life  has not been easy for me. And through the gift, expressed a small welcome to this change.
b)  I am a bookworm and there can't be a more apt gift than a book
c) This book is very relevant to Delhi life and its nuances
f) Most importantly, the person took the trouble to get a nice pen and spent 2 minutes scrolling down a sweet note.

This is the art of "personalization". Suddenly the "massification" of gifting I was talking about pales against a touch of "personalization".  Personalization is not about money. The only thing we need to invest is some thought. Thought into what the person likes, what will make him or her feel good, how we can  add a small touch to make something off the shelf personal.

I think of all the "freebies" we conjure up with our clients on our brands. Sometimes the decision actually boils down to what the most cost effective vendor can turn around in the timelines. Then we create an ad or a jingle to talk about the special offer.
How often do we, myself included, spend sometime thinking what would be relevant when we give a gift or a "freebie"? How can we make it a little special? How can the brand get an emotional hug of thank you from the delighted consumer? Food for Thought this festive season.

And yes. All it takes is some thinking. And a little more work.  To turn a "freebie" into a "present".