Over P500M was spent on wines for gifts giving in the last quarter of year 2002. That number is not surprising by any standards. In fact, despite the political turmoil and impending economic disaster, more money than ever will be spent on wine as gifts this year. Why? It is the advent of the Wine Lifestyle of course. Everybody is doing it – giving wines as gifts.

It is now common knowledge that wine can be used to make a statement. A gift of wine is a much more concise articulation of a message that you the giver wants to convey to the recipient. A poor selection, however, could convey the wrong message and speaks ill of the giver. Learn how to do it properly and you can achieve brilliant results without having to put a serious dent on your bank account.

Wrong Assumption

It is social suicide to believe that recipients don’t know anything about wine and therefore cannot tell the difference. WRONG ASSUMPTION! Everyone either knows a lot more about wine than you think or has one or more friends who are steep in the wine culture. Although it is not necessary to prove yourself in the knowledge of wine, you are expected to show thoughtfulness through your wine selection.

If we are talking about your most valuable clients, these are people who are probably very accustomed to being served wines that cost P5,000 and above. A gift of many bottles of ordinary wine will simply make them feel they are too good for you! These people, fortunately, are unlikely to gulp down many bottles of rare wine over dinner. Savoring just one bottle with valued friends is more likely going to be the case.

Quality not quantity

A gift is only as good as the lowest denominator of its components. Giving 10 diamond rings 0.1carat each will hardly serve the same purpose of one 1-carat diamond ring.

A case of bad or mediocre wine costing P15,000 is certainly inferior to three bottles costing P5,000 each. Ordinary wines are available everywhere even in super-markets these days. If you can help it, don’t let the recipients find the same stuff on the shelves of supermarkets and wine stores with their price tags prominently displayed! A clever selection of rare vintage wines will cause you to be remembered. You will probably be frequently mentioned as the person who gave a bottle of an old vintage wine rather than one who gave a case of ordinary red wine from Chile!

Value for your money

Stretch the Dollar (or Peso)! Corporate clients are no longer impressed by “big names” in wine. The Margaux and Petrus wines cost a great deal and do very little for your cause.

Spending P30,000 a young (2001 for example) Ch. Margaux impresses nobody anymore because all your friends who are already into wine will have at least a few of them in their home cellar. Instead the smart money opts for an older and rare vintage of something classy like a Chateau Leoville-Las-Cases costing half that.

Be even more clever and go for a P4,500 bottle of good Bordeaux from a vintage in the 60’s or 70’s. That’s rare. The recipients will be impressed, possibly shocked and certainly pleasantly surprised.

Again, the gift achieves the purpose of acquiring mindshare. Your clients remember the gift (and the company that they received it from) and just as important, would talk about it to their friends and associates.

Uniqueness generates mileage

In the past, the same wines are given to a group of valuable clients. They all receive more or less the same (ordinary) stuff. Nobody talks about your gifts and often they turn around and give them to someone else.

This time around, you can achieve a lot more mileage by giving everyone a different selection of interesting bottles. Your gifts might become the talk of the town as these bottles grace important dinners early next year.

Your clients will compare you against your competitors at all levels and aspects of your business. Gift giving is clearly going to be an item for comparison.

All of your valued clients and friends will tell their friends the best gifts they got. This being the case, it is obviously advantageous to spend the same money on an impressive gift rather than many unimpressive bottles.

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