Coronavirus gifting in 2020

What a year 2020 has turned out to be so far;

The optimism of the New Year with a newly minted government that had five years to innovate and the angst of Brexit disappearing in the 2019 rear-view mirror, indicated that the path ahead looked to be onwards and upwards.

Note to self: “expect the unexpected”.

Who could have imagined a national lockdown where we were unable to leave our homes for weeks at a time. The government offering employee life support though their furlough scheme. The concept of WFH (working from home) becoming common parlance and likely to be the future going forward - or at least part-time working from home.We have adapted like all of you to the “new normal”. It is no secret that we felt like the proverbial rabbit in the headlights as the storm broke in February and as we moved into lockdown in March. April was a month of steadying the ship and plotting a course forward. But by May, new laterals were sprouting in new directions.

What we’ve noticed is that although our hospitality, events, and office parties orders dropped. Something else bubbled to the top.  We’ve seen a HUGE increase across all of our customers for sending personalised bottles and gifts direct to the recipient.

Everyone has wanted to say thank-you (quite right too).

We’ve sent out:

  • Personalised bottles and gifts to whole teams to say thank you
  • Multiple thank you bottles to customers and key suppliers
  • Special occasion bottles to staff members (birthdays & retirements)
  • Merry Christmas bottles (are already ordered although not delivered) instead of the usual Christmas parties

Of course, for us, this isn’t new work but the volume has been unprecedented. We’ve been glad we’ve had years of practice advising our customers on perfecting their label designs, maximising impact, as well as effective packaging and distribution. So, we’ve handled the increase in bottles all in our stride. Our customers only need to send through an excel spreadsheet and then they can simply receive the ping of appreciative emails once the gifts start landing.

I appreciate this note is a little egotistic, and I apologise for that. We know there are storms on the horizon and huge bumps in the road ahead - but at least the Park Lane quality, service, and attention to detail is currently in as much demand as ever; and long may that continue!And never have so many of our customers been so prepared in advance for their Christmas corporate requirements by mid-September - so maybe that is a silver line to these terrible clouds, after all...