The Surge in Corporate Gifting is Great for Wineries
06.07.2022  |  by Amanda Castorena

Amanda joined Copper Peak in 2019, bringing years of wine industry experience along with her. In her role as Account Executive, Amanda supports her clients with her expertise and commitment to outstanding service. 

The ongoing popularity of corporate gifting is a huge opportunity for wineries! But to get in on that opportunity, wineries have to start thinking about their offerings now.

For those new to the idea, “corporate gifting” is just the term for when a business or similar organization creates a personal connection with people—employees, clients, prospects, even vendors—by sending them some sort of gift. Wine and related products have always been a favorite for corporate gifts, and so the recent surge in corporate gift spending makes this a lucrative opportunity for wine brands…if they can plan ahead.

Why the Surge in Corporate Gifting? And How Can Your Winery Get in on the Trend?

The surge in corporate gifting over the past few years started with the COVID-19 pandemic. When workplaces went into lockdown and remote work became the norm, holiday parties and corporate gatherings were canceled, too. In place of parties, many companies decided to send gifts instead.

Interestingly, the volume of corporate gifting did not recede in 2021, and it shows no signs of slowing down in 2022 either. Now that companies have discovered how easy and effective a simple gift delivery can be, they’re hooked.

This is good news for wineries. Companies spend on average $44 each for employee gifts and $48 each for client gifts…and a quarter of all companies spend over $100 on each gift. And though corporate gifts come in many forms, wine is still one of the most common corporate gifts given each year.

Corporate gifting is also a wonderful branding opportunity for wineries. When someone gives a bottle of your wine as a gift, that puts it right into the hands of new potential customers—a great way to grow!

Getting in on this trend means selling your wine directly as a gift or gift kit (not just bottles). Doing this effectively takes some planning.

Timing and Planning for the Gift Season

Although prime gifting season is in November and December, November 1 is way too late to start thinking about your gift offers. Here’s a rough timeline to help you plan:

Start strategizing in May/June. Spring is when you need to start thinking about what you are going to offer, and how. Will you be offering gift boxes? How will they be configured? What else will go in them? Will you include custom belly bands? A small printed catalog? Now is the time to get the basics nailed down.

Figure out quantities in early summer. The best time to assemble kits is in the summertime. For us to do that, we need to know quantities and start receiving your inventory early in the season. Don’t be afraid to pre-build! Just start with a reasonable amount, and communicate with us if and when you need more. (We had one client who ordered a few dozen gift kits to be built in 2020—their first time offering a gift—and they ended up selling over a thousand kits! Fortunately, they communicated with us throughout the process so we could keep the gifts moving.)

Start building in summer. Late summer is the slow time in the shipping industry, so there are plenty of helping hands ready to do the assembly. If you have your inventory ready at the start of the summer, assembly can be done by August/September, and you’ll have your gifts on the shelves, ready to go, when orders start coming in.

Ideas for Corporate Gift Design

Our piece on creative kitting for gifts has some great ideas to get you thinking about what would make an attractive gift that best represents your brand. Some of the winners we’ve seen in past years include:

  • A monogrammed leatherette case that included a corkscrew and foil cutter
  • A box with a sprig of lavender inside—gave the gift a distinctive aroma!
  • A recipe book with shelf-stable spices and ingredients

You might also want to ask around and see what other wineries are doing. Don’t stop at just one idea. Collect a few, and work with your fulfillment partner to see what is most feasible and affordable. Some questions to keep in mind:

  • Does the kit include anything not shelf-stable? Or that needs to be temperature-controlled (for example, chocolate)?
  • Is there anything fragile or breakable?
  • Will anything need to be printed for inclusion in the kit? (That process should be done well ahead of time.)
  • What substitutions are allowable? How flexible can you be about the items? The packaging?

If you want to discuss the possibilities with us, we’d love to help!