Today’s blog post comes from Valerie Guerrero with tips on how to make sure your product choices, branded gifts and promotional merchandise will make the recipient feel like “It’s Christmas morning!”  We thought it would be fun to share some Brand Love moments, Hollywood style.

In 2011, I founded The Artisan Group as a way to get more exposure for my own products and designs. Through the years, I cultivated relationships with event hosting companies, as well as producers and costume designers for Hollywood events and hit television shows. Looking back 5 years ago when the organization was founded I would have never dreamed it would be what it is today. We’ve obtained thousands of celebrity photos with our member’s products and placed 500+ handcrafted products on more than 30 TV shows.

Hollywood, CA sign

In Hollywood, the word “swag” is known to be an acronym for “sealed with a gift” or “stuff we all get.” The Artisan Group works with artists and makers to create coordinated gift bag items for celebrities at major events with a focus on handcrafted items — trendy jewelry, as well as soaps, candles, knitwear, and other sought-after items. Our member’s jewelry has been featured on The Vampire Diaries, How to Get Away with Murder, Modern Family, Bones, Law & Order: SVU, and Scandal, to name a few. You can see all of our As Seen on TV products here.

The main piece of advice I have for anyone who is gifting products in an effort to gain exposure is to know your audience. When we’re putting together gift bags for television shows, we always research the style and aesthetic of that show. For example, Bones has a bohemian “boho” chic aesthetic, so we aim to show them products and jewelry that are in line with their vision. The same applies to any corporate setting, tradeshow or promotional event. Is the recipient a millennial who is digitally savvy? Is the recipient an athletic male? Get to know the recipient, do your due diligence, and only then will you be able to give a promotional gift that will fit your target perfectly.

Bones custom made necklace One of the costume designers from Pretty Little Liars shared with me that our collections make her feel like “it’s Christmas morning” because all of the items are special and in line with the aesthetic of that show. For any gifting experience, the advice is the same. Know your audience!
I’d also recommend that you think of the entire gift bag as a cohesive package. All of the items should flow well together – the messaging or branding, the product itself, even the packaging and the bag itself. Whether it’s a tradeshow event or a Hollywood awards party, the same logic applies.

My most memorable moment occurred when we welcomed back Viola Davis in January 2016 at the gifting suite honoring the 73rd Annual Golden Globe Awards event in Beverly Hills. I had put together a gift bag for the celebrities as well as an impressive display exhibit with various jewelry pieces and other fun artisan items. She said to me, “I love your stuff, and I always use everything you gift me.” It was such a huge compliment. Viola Davis – Primetime Emmy Award winner, Oscar-nominee, Golden Globe-nominee – and she remembered The Artisan Group’s collection. She immediately remembered our previous collection when she stopped by our exhibit. That speaks volumes about how strong your branded presence should always be. I’m very selective in my efforts to create the ultimate gift bag, so this was truly a very satisfying moment for our group.

Crystal Albatross necklace

The last piece of advice I have for anyone who is creating a gift for a brand or promotional experience is to consider purchasing something that is handcrafted or custom made. We are all so inundated with the same mass-produced items that anyone can buy at the store. What makes an item memorable is the craft, and the heart and soul that is poured into each product. Today there are so many custom and handcrafted items that could work for corporate or branding purposes – from custom chocolate to custom glassware– the sky’s the limit!

Valerie Bio

Let’s create Brand Love moments! Check out more creative solutions from Boundless here!