I was just telling my friend Jamie the other day: you can take the girl out of the stationery, but you can’t take the stationery out of the girl :) This is my premise for using gift packages to promote launches or projects I’m working on – I LOVE giving gifts. I love curating the perfect collection of items that I think the recipient will love, especially when it’s centered around a specific theme or for an event – like a launch! Since I scrapped my physical product line earlier this year, I was itching to work something physical back into my business and sending these launch packets has been the perfect solution. In such a digital world, it’s nice to add a more personal element like a gift packet, or even just a thank you card. Today, let’s dive into some ideas for when you can use a gift packet, who to send it to, what to include, and how to package it all up – plus real-life examples for every step of the way!
WHEN TO USE THEM
You can use a gift package to promote a wide variety of things for your business. Personally, I’ve used them to promote the start of my blog, and also to promote my upcoming e-course (that launches next week!). And maybe more importantly – gift packets are meant to show your supporters that you're grateful. It shouldn't be all about promotion + business, sometimes it comes down to a simple "thank you, you're awesome!" Here are some more ideas to get your wheels turning about when you can put together a gift packet:
- launching a new business or a rebrand
- launching a new blog
- launching a new product line
- launching a new shop
- launching a flagship product like an e-course or online program
- opening of a physical venue, like a gallery or office space
- promoting a conference or retreat
The InDesign Field Guide e-course launch packets
WHO TO SEND THEM TO
1. Friends who are more than followers
Think about the people in your circles that you run to when you have a win. Who do you want to share it with? Who are your “cheerleaders?” These are the ones you want to send your gift packets to – because they already love celebrating with you! Think about friends who are active on social media, and have a way to share about whatever you’re promoting. Be sure you’re sending these to people you already have an established relationship with, otherwise it can come off kind of scammy. Another important note here — give them a heads up! No one likes being caught off guard, so send a quick email asking if it's okay to ship this to them and if they're willing to help you promote it (and don't forget to get their mailing address!).
2. Friends in different industries
It can also be helpful to send your gift packet to friends in a wide variety of industries. If you’re a stationery designer, don’t feel like you have to only send your packets to other stationery designers. If you have friends who are copywriters, photographers, web designers, wedding professionals, etc. – send it to them too! These can all help you reach a wider audience and new circles of potential customers or clients. It casts your net a little farther than if you were to stay in your own little bubble.
Heather Crabtree's Streamline with Systems e-course launch packets
WHAT TO INCLUDE
1. The first word of gift packet — gift!
Business isn’t all serious – include something fun and unexpected in your gift packet to surprise and delight. The whole point of the gift packet is to send an actual gift, so send something they’ll enjoy and can use on a regular basis. Remember, a big part of this entire concept is thanking them for supporting + encouraging you — so show them you're grateful :)
2. Your promotional info
Another big purpose of your gift packet is to promote something, right?! So include something that tells your friend what you’re promoting and how they can get involved. I think this is a fun place to include a small handful of things – like a postcard about your specific promotion or launch, maybe a business card, or even some kind of sample or sneak peek (depending on what you’re promoting).
3. Something personal
Sending gift packets is a personal gesture, so take it a step further and include something meaningful and directed right to your recipient. I always include a personal note – bonus points if it's on branded stationery! It can also be a nice touch to include a tag with their name or even making the gift part of the gift packet be customized especially for them, like a personalized notepad or art print.
4. Think about logistics
Whatever things you choose to include in your gift packet, keep in mind that it will be mailed. A good option for quick + easy shipping is using the smallest flat rate box from the USPS. If all your items are flat, a large envelope might work fine too. Just be mindful of the shapes, weights, and size of the things you’re sending. If you can’t ship it affordably, you might want to rethink it!
5. Keep it cohesive
Think about an overall theme as you’re deciding what to include in your gift packet. For example, Heather Crabtree’s Streamline with Systems course launch packets included products that were specific to female entrepreneurs and encouragement, which is who her course was for. For the InDesign Field Guide launch packets, I went with a field-guide / outdoor theme including things like wooden pencils, a custom notebook, and a granola bar – all wrapped in kraft paper and baker’s twine. If you’re not sure what type of theme to use, an easy way to keep it all cohesive is by color. For example, for Phyllis Sa’s rebrand + website launch she used similar colors for everything she included – all matching her new brand + website. For my blog launch packets, I also stuck to a color theme that matched my Paper + Oats branding.
Phyllis Sa's rebrand + website launch packets
HOW TO PACKAGE THEM
This is the fun part! Seriously, I love this part. Embellishing with fun papers, ribbons, string, tags, envelopes, tape, bags, and other details can really bring everything together. I usually like to add a little detail like a flower or sprig of green to the outside of the wrapping. Making your presentation shine makes your recipient super excited to pull it out of the box and unwrap everything – build the excitement and get creative!
The Oat Bar blog launch packets
Speaking of gift packages...
In case you missed it earlier, I put together a field-guide-themed goodie box for The InDesign Field Guide, and they're sooooo fun. I'm a little obsessed. So how can you get your hands on one? Well I already sent out a few to some of my industry "cheerleaders" as well as my beta testers for the course, but there's also a chance for YOU to get one too! The first 15 students who register for The InDesign Field Guide (starting on launch day October 27) will get an exclusive 2-part bonus:
- exclusive course goodie box full of field-guide-themed treats (including a limited edition course notebook!) packaged with care and shipped straight to your front door
- 1-on-1 design review session with me (30 minutes) to go over your course project, get feedback on their design, and pick my brain on all-things InDesign
Registration for The InDesign Field Guide will be $299 and it opens on Tuesday, October 27 only at www.theindesignfieldguide.com.
It'll be open for purchase for about a week, then it'll close so I can give plenty of attention to this first round of students. Can't wait to see all the cool things you'll be able to create with InDesign after this course!