To Gift Or Not To Gift

To Gift Or Not To Gift

Does giving gifts to clients after completing the transaction make a difference?

Have you ever wondered if those gifts you have been giving your Clients at closing or shortly thereafter ever made an impact. Well, that is a question that was posed to a group of recent home purchasers. This group was asked whether or not they had received a gift and, if so, what that gift meant to them.

The results of that groups comments will follow shortly.

I have often wondered myself whether all those gifts that I gave while I was actively selling ever made a difference. I have given every gift you can imagine. I have given gift certificates for dinner, I have given home books, I have given hand blown glass art, I have given golf packages, I have given it all. Sometimes the responses were very enthusiastic, but most of the time the clients would say "Oh, this is so thoughtful, we didn't expect this, you shouldn't have". I often wondered whether my hard earned money was just being thrown out the window and being wasted on these gifts.

I have come to fully understand the value and importance of gift giving at closing through the eyes of the client. We asked a group of purchasers if they had received a gift from their real estate agent. They responded as follows: 6% said yes, 94% said no. Of the 94% that did not receive a gift, an astonishing 84% of them said that it would have been a nice gesture to receive a gift and/or thank you shortly after closing. This was a huge shock to me, because although I was a gift giver when I was selling, I didn't realize the importance to the client. What came across loud and clear with the 84% that did not receive a gift, was not that they were disappointed in not receiving a gift; they were mostly disappointed in the way they were treated once the transaction was complete.

Their number one complaint was that the steady stream of communication that they had had from pending to closing had abruptly ended. Although they realized that they would not be in such regular contact with the real estate agent once the transaction was complete, they didn't expect the sudden disappearance of the agent.

What was most evident from this group was their desire to have at least received a thank you call or thank you note. When asked about the gift specifically, the 84% that did not receive a gift unanimously agreed that it would have been a welcome and nice gesture and a nice way to complete the transaction with the agent.

Of the 6% that did receive the gift, they responded that they felt the gift was a polite gesture and something that they would remember. When asked if the gift would be the deciding factor in them referring that agent, the answer was no, but what came across loud and clear with the 84% that did not receive a gift and/or thank you was that they wondered how well the agent would serve anyone that they referred to them if they couldn't even be bothered to pick up the phone and give them a thank you call or send them a simple hand - written thank you note.

When I asked the entire group what kind of gifts they would want from their real estate agent, here are some of their favorite choices:

  1. They like the idea of having a high quality binder to keep all of their real estate related information in one place. There are many types of these binders on the market. If you would like to know specifically where to get these, email me and I will forward you a link to some of those company's websites.
  2. Dinner certificates
  3. Gift certificates to Home Depot
  4. Art or a small ornament of some kind
  5. Anything to do with golf
  6. Gift certificates to events that would include their children

The one thing that came across loud and clear was that your clients want your time and attention. Giving those gifts is just another way to say thank you for their business. It makes them feel that they are appreciated and that their business is important to you. The dollar value of the gift has very little impact on this group, as they felt it wasn't the amount of the gift that mattered; it was the gesture of getting the gift that was important to them.

Your clients want your time and attention and one way to give them that is to appreciate their business, thank them for continuing to use you and most importantly make them feel that they are an important part of your business and that they are truly appreciated.

Gift giving is another form of communication and a form that is highly favorable to your clients. Personally, I remember every gift I am given and I have to tell you that I am touched every time, whether the gifts financial value is low or high. All of us want to feel special and gift giving is another way to make your clients feel important.

 Categories: Past Client Care