Creative Gift Ideas for Your Next Event
Looking for gift ideas and inspiration for your next event? Check out these creative conference gifts, business retreat gifts, employee welcome gifts and more!
Gifting alongside corporate events is a surefire way to build anticipation, increase engagement, and let your attendees know just how excited you are they’re joining you (whether virtually or in-person!).
We know you probably have a full schedule of company events lined up this year, so we’re sharing some fun, creative gift ideas that will get the wheels turning on ways you can incorporate gifting into your next event – no matter the occasion!
Conference Gift Ideas
Conferences are the perfect opportunity to wow your attendees and amp up engagement with a thoughtful gift. For extra impact, we love tying the gift into the theme of your conference or highlighting the city where your event is taking place. This provides so many fun and creative opportunities to create an experience your attendees won’t soon forget! Check out these fun gift boxes that were inspired some of our favorite cities:
For that Conference in Miami…
Listen closely – did you hear that? Pretty sure that’s Will Smith's iconic song Welcome to Miami playing in the distance!
So, you're hosting a conference in Miami... we’re not not jealous.
Beachside hotel reserved? Check! Dazzling speakers booked? Check! Swoon-worthy conference swag your attendees will be talking about all the way until next year’s soiree rolls around? We have you covered!
Surprise conference-goers with a curated gift box with all the essentials for a good time - Miami style! Complete with: a floating flamingo to hold a beverage at the hotel pool, a disposable camera to capture selfies with the team, bright bracelets to glow on the dancefloor all night long, Liquid IV packets for the morning after lots of “networking,” a colorful sticker of Miami's iconic lifeguard stand, and an art deco-inspired candle they can keep long after the trip is over!
Customize the gift by adding a logo to the gift box sleeve and add in a branded card insert with a special note to welcome attendees to the party – err, I mean – conference 😉
Pro tip: Make it easy on attendees by including the conference schedule in the gift box! Just add a printed version on the insert or provide a QR code for a digital agenda so your attendees always know what’s coming up next.
Or that Convention in New Orleans…
Setting up a booth at a convention down in Nawlins? We can smell the beignets at Cafe du Monde from here!
Get ahead of the game before the convention even begins by hyping up your prospects with curated gift boxes inspired by the French Quarter!
Take it from Paycor – that's exactly what they did with these sweet ‘n’ spicy gifts for the SHRM 2022 Conference this past June! These gifts were filled with treats from local businesses like Mardi Gras king cake praline cookies by the New Orleans Famous Praline Company, Beignet-flavored popcorn by Cajun Pop, a Cajun spice blend from Nourished Roots Spice Co, a bottle of TABASCO original hot sauce, and a New Orleans-scented candle inspired by the bold flavors of the city.
We helped the folks over at Paycor get these gifts in their prospects’ hands before the conference started – a brilliant way to stand out from competitors and entice potential customers to stop by their booth!
Whether you want to send your gifts before your conference to thank attendees for registering or prefer to hand deliver when your attendees arrive on site, you can leave all the shipping logistics to us. We know you have a million other things on your pre-conference to-do list: let us make gifting worry-free!
But let’s be real – not all of us will be hitting South Beach or Bourbon Street for a business conference. But don’t let that stop you from getting creative with your next big event! A good corporate gift is an opportunity to tell a story, so no matter where your conference takes place or what theme you’re going for, there are always fun opportunities to use gifting in a unique way.
Off-Site and Retreat Gifts
Jazzing things up with an off-site business retreat?! We love to see it! Getting out of the traditional office setting is a great opportunity for team-building and strengthening relationships with clients.
Level up your next corporate retreat with curated gifts that will increase attendance and create an unforgettable experience for your clients and employees!
For that Annual Golf Outing…
Who’s ready to hit the links? Whether you’re hosting a team-building activity, VIP outing or annual fundraiser, tee up the perfect round by treating your attendees to a golf-themed gift box they can use on the course!
For a gift that both amateurs and scratch golfers alike are sure to love, we recommend including something to enhance their game, a snack or beverage to keep them fueled, and, of course, a set of golf balls (bonus if they’re branded!).
Opt to ship the gifts to your golfers well before they reach the front-nine, and they can be sure to put it all to good use. On the other hand, presenting the gift at your event is a thoughtful and memorable way to thank your participants for attending! Either way, there are no (sand) traps here: a recent study of corporate gift buyers revealed 80% said gifts have improved relationships with employers and/or clients!
Virtual Event Gift Ideas
It’s no secret virtual and hybrid events are here to stay! While gathering virtually can have many benefits, we know it can also be more difficult to build the same engagement and energetic vibes in-person events are known for– a big deal considering nearly half of marketers say audience engagement is the biggest factor in having successful virtual events.
The good news? Gifting can help turn an otherwise impersonal experience into a truly engaging one, where attendees feel connected to the topic and one another!
For that Virtual Conference...
Has your company’s annual conference that used to be in-person since gone virtual? We hear ya!
The folks over at Lessonly found themselves in the same boat with their annual Yellowship conference. In an effort to connect with customers and boost attendance, the Indianapolis-based company came to us for curated gifts to send to their invitees!
Understanding your customer is key – so when it comes to virtual event gifting, think about your recipients and how you can make it exciting for them to log on to attend! For Lessonly, this meant designing a gift around coffee so that attendees could enjoy a cup while attending the conference. Talk about creating a buzz!
The gifts included a tastefully branded coffee mug, the most delicious coffee from Tinker Coffee Co., a local Indianapolis coffee roaster, and fun stickers featuring the Lessonly llama. Packed to perfection, this gift came wrapped in a branded gift box sleeve with a custom design made specifically for the event!
Best of all? The gifts did exactly what Lessonly hoped they would do: increase event attendance. Over 1,000 people attended Yellowship virtually! Learn more about Lessonly's gifting experience here.
Or that Leadership Seminar...
Just because your event has gone virtual doesn’t mean it can’t be impactful!
Take Zendesk’s virtual leadership seminar as an example. The headlining speaker at the was lawyer, television host, author, and motivational speaker Mel Robbins. To really bring the experience to life for attendees, the gifts included items to be enjoyed before, during and after the event, including one of Robbins’ books, day-of essentials like a tasty snack and branded notebook, and empowerment cards to reinforce the leadership lessons from the event, long after it was over.
Gift Ideas for New Employees
How do you welcome new hires to the team? As many of us know, beginning a new job can be both exciting and a little intimidating! Of course, welcome parties are a great way to help ease the transition. But don’t stop there! A thoughtful gift can go a long way in helping the newbies feel a part of the team. Think of it as an opportunity to introduce the company culture and make a good first impression!
Plus, giving new employees a memorable gift can help with long-term retention, too. According to a recent study of 300 corporate gift buyers, 41% reported gifting resulted in substantial improvement in employee retention. Just sayin'.
For that New-Hire Happy Hour…
Did someone say happy hour? We’re in!
Get ready to raise a glass to your newest team members! Mixing and mingling with new hires at your quarterly happy hour is a great way to welcome them to the team. Make them feel extra happy to be there by loading them up with treats and fun swag that will have them feeling like their new job is the best ever.
The team over at Wordpress VIP loves a good happy hour themed gift, and we don’t blame them! We love this gift idea because it’s packed with (almost) everything you need to make your next happy hour an interactive experience (just add booze!)
Plus, this gift offers flexibility if some of your new employees are partially or fully remote. Deliver a happy hour-themed gift right to their doorsteps so they can join in on the fun virtually! From lemon mules to spicy margaritas, the possibilities are endless for a unique gift full of ingredients for the perfect cocktail (or mocktail!).
Pro tip: include a branded tumbler and recipe card in the gift, so everyone can all mix up the same beverage for your virtual meetup and show off their new swag!
Wrapping It Up
No matter the occasion or celebration, gifts are a great opportunity to add a special touch to your event. Whether you're searching for conference gift ideas, gifts for business off-site events and retreats, gifts for virtual events, or new hire gifts, we're here to help!
Get more gift ideas and inspiration when you see our work. There are so many ways to take your event to the next level through custom, curated gifting!
Who knew corporate gifts could be so FUN?! Check out this round-up of gift ideas that are ANYTHING but boring!
Looking for Help with Corporate Gifts?
We'd love to hear about your next big event and bounce around gifting ideas! Get in touch with an Account Manager today.