We've all been there.
The holiday seasons approach.
You start to make your “who to shop for” list and you see it.
The NO IDEA WHAT TO BUY section.
The people on your list that are the impossible to shop for.
The thing is, they're not too difficult to please.
It's just that you've been giving them gifts for decades….and they don't need anything (this is what they tell you) and you've ran out of ideas.
This article lays out 3 rules to follow to buy the perfect gift…….when you don't know what to buy.
What To Give vs. What Not To Give
Before we talk about how to give the perfect gift I think it is worth mentioning the types of gifts to avoid.
Don't give gag gifts.
We call these the “gifts that keep on giving”, because they're only good for a one time laugh.
Save them for specific joke giving occasions, like white elephant parties or secret Santa opportunities.
Don't give a giftcard.
This basically says “I don't know what to get you, so I just did the bare minimum.”
So what are the three rules on gift giving to difficult to buy for people?
When shopping for hard to buy people you want to focus on:
1. A Gift Should Be Useful
When you give a gift to someone it has to be something that they will use over and over again.
You don't want to give a gift that will sit in the corner forever. If it's only good enough for a one time use there's no real purpose there.
Avoid giving gifts that have the potential to be re-gifted.
Before you give someone a gift ask yourself, “If someone was giving this to me would I reuse it?” If the answer is yes, there's a good chance it's a useful gift. Just make sure that it meets their personal needs.
A great example is what I got for my wife.
Whenever we go out she forgets to charge her phone, and halfway through the day her phone dies.
This was a great opportunity for me to get something useful for her. A portable charging cord with a built in jump charge!
This Native Union Jump Cable is available on the Birchbox website. This cable works as a charger when you're in the vicinity of an outlet, and it also has a built in battery pack. The battery is good for one solid charge, which is usually plenty when going out for the night.
Now she doesn't leave the house without it
I spotted a problem, found a solution, and gave a useful gift.
Of course now I will have to remind her to charge the charger 😉
Nothing is more exciting than not knowing what someone buys for you.
It says that you put thought into buying for them and didn't just ask for a wishlist.
One way to surprise people is to give them their gift a day before they should be receiving them. It says that you knew the day was coming and you were proactive about surprising them.
Another way to surprise people is with a recurring mystery gift.
Subscription services are great for that. You surprise them once with a year subscription, and then they get a recurring surprise for 12 months after that.
I bought my aunt and sisters the Birchbox Women subscription. Every time they receive a box in the mail it's a great reminder of our relationship and allows us to stay connected year round.
This is different from being functional.
Sure they may use it, but if it's high quality it won't break. Purchase something that they probably wouldn't buy on their own because it is a little luxurious, but not overly expensive. It says “Hey I'm thinking about you and I want you to have the best quality.”
You want it to be something that will last.
A prime example is what I am buying for my brothers, Steve and Tom.
I am getting them both high quality grooming kits from the Birchbox Man selections.
Birchbox partners with superior companies and The Art of Shaving has a great starter kit which includes quality shaving creams. It is a perfect gift for Steve.
Additionally, Tom is a guy who uses razors quite often and needs a well built razor that will last. Razors can be pricey to buy over time so purchasing one that is nice quality makes it a thoughtful gift.
Harry's Razors is a company that prides themselves on quality. I've used them several times in the past and they keep proving to be a great company.
Having the ability to give luxury gifts to people who mean so much to you and spend their life serving goes a long way.
Next on my list are my three nephews from California.
They are the guys who are always gelling their hair and following the latest trends.
I found some awesome hair styling gels, pomades and more over at VITAMAN. These natural hair styling products for men are new on the scene but make up for it in their quality and price!
Each is formulated with 100% naturally sourced ingredients from the Australian Outback and are the perfect gift to surprise that special someone.
Last but not least, my father.
He doesn't voice what he wants as gifts on holidays. He would rather focus on giving to someone else.
Therefore, it's up to me to pay attention to his needs and provide something of value and quality for him.
He is a Vietnam war veteran with rough skin.
The perfect gift for him is the Das Boom lotion. While he may use lotion already, purchasing a higher quality product that goes above and beyond what he already uses shows appreciation.
When it comes down to it the most important thing to do is to pay attention to the needs of your loved ones.
This makes shopping for them abundantly easier.
Observe an interest, spot a need, find a product that fits into useful, surprising, and good quality.
Follow these guidelines gentleman, and you can't go wrong.