The Gift Genius Series: Tell The Story

In our last entry, we shared the first of Laura’s 4 tips for creating memorable gifts: Making it unique to you and them.  Today we're going to talk about the role that stories play in establishing the emotional attachments that make a lasting impression.

If we asked you to tell us about one of the most meaningful gifts you’ve ever received, chances are you’d feel compelled to give us the context of the gift.  Imagine for a second that you're bringing a bottle of wine to a dinner party.  Now imagine that you're bringing a bottle from a small production winemaker you just discovered on a trip to Napa Valley, which you were delighted to find stocked in a wine shop nearby.  It's the same bottle of wine in both cases, but it's the second bottle that will be remembered.  

  • Tip #2: Give them a story that begs to be retold.
  • Memorable gifts have stories. The story you choose to tell might be about how you came up with this particular gift, or perhaps about the merchant who made it. Either way, think about the information you want to share with your recipient in addition to the actual items in their gift.

    • Can you introduce the recipient to an up-and-coming artisan or entrepreneur they may not have heard of, but you know they’d love?
    • Did you find the gift under extraordinary circumstances? If it came from a one-of-a-kind market or merchant, or has an unusual feature you can explain to your recipient, it will be all the more compelling.
    • Can your gift include a societal good such as products made of upcycled components or from merchants with a social mission?
    • Do you have a particular relationship with the merchants behind your gift?  Or does the gift include one of your personal favorite things?  If so, share your enthusiasm and let the recipient know!
    • Can you include additional information to make the recipient feel more connected with the gift, such as the web site of the merchant or the history of the organization?

    Your recipient will form a more lasting connection with your gift if you give them an interesting story to pass along to others, as well as a reason to learn more about an item, its history, and its maker.