Attractive vessels that envelop gift collections allow you to set your business apart from competitors that distribute traditional gift baskets.

My own business began with this vision. While I appreciate how baskets established the industry’s foundation, I also realized that mini spas, sleighs, and ornate teapots broadened my design’s appeal to make similar gifts for retailers and manufacturers.

If creating a gift collection without baskets is your company’s goal, this article guides you in the right direction.

Choose your vessel

Deciding to create a gift collection, one that promotes your brand without baskets as part of the presentation, is an easy choice. The next step is finding and selecting appropriate containers. That may not be as easy, but the research will uncover containers that don’t make the cut and others that exude the attractiveness you desire.

What types of containers have potential?

  • Shoes
  • Steins
  • Wagons
  • Planters
  • Umbrellas
  • Tote bags
  • Pool tables
  • Cutting boards

That’s a small sample of your choices. I’ve created gift collections with each of them for small and large firms.

Know your why

Selecting the right type of alternative basket is no small feat. Questions I help my retail and manufacturing clients answer include:

Is this right for the firm?
Is this right for the firm’s current vision?
Is this right for the firm for the next ___ years?

These aren’t the exact questions, as the answers must uncover reasons beyond a simple yes or no, but it’s close to what we explore to deliver the best results.

One success example

A retailer required their collection to be identified, constructed, and transported throughout the U.S. Baskets were not part of their vision, so I set out to locate a sturdy container to protect fragile products.

Thankfully, my long-term experience and container knowledge decreased the time taken to find two front runners. Containers and product samples were delivered to my studio, and initial designs were created before sending prototypes to the client.

One container emerged as the front runner, and the approved prototype was delivered for mass production by an outsourcing firm I located and interviewed before awarding the contract.

That retailer still creates their gift collection in the same manner as the final design, and their revenue continues to increase.

Where to Start

Knowing both your clients’ preferences and your vision for brand promotion are vital in the initial stages of creating your unique collection. This analysis is best determined with a specialist who understands your company’s expectations. That’s what a conversation with me reveals.

Together, we devise a strategy and turn it into a visual product that clearly and memorably identifies your brand. Let’s start the conversation today so the container that best fits your image emerges to create a gift collection coveted by your clients.

Shirley George Frazier
In the gift basket world, all roads lead to Shirley George Frazier, the industry's reigning expert and international authority. Shirley is chief basketologist at Sweet Survival LLC and author of the industry's best-selling books, How to Start a Home-Based Gift Basket Business, The Gift Basket Design Book, and Marketing Strategies for the Home-Based Business. Shirley works with manufacturers and retailers to successfully add gift baskets to their current revenue streams. Shirley is also a frequent speaker at events and instructor of the popular online course, Start Your Own Gift Basket Business. Contact Shirley to speak at your event or call 973-279-2799 to schedule a consultation.

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