Use Leave-Behinds to Get Ahead

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Leave-behinds are one of the easiest ways to impress new clients, build stronger relationships with existing clients and generate more referrals for your business. Here are a few tips for using leave-behinds to help your business stand out from the crowd.


What they look like

Great leave-behinds come in every shape and size. It all comes down to thinking about what things the recipient might value, and then finding a way to provide that in an engaging and memorable way. Some common types of leave-behinds are:

  • A practical item (pens, stationery, office accessories, etc.)
  • A commemorative gift (pictures, candles, artisan crafts, etc.)
  • An informational document about your business
  • An integrated sell sheet like this one

When to use them

Even if you order your leave-behinds in bulk, don’t treat them like a bulk commodity. Use them sparingly to accomplish a strategic goal. If you hand them out by the truckload, they’ll lose their value. Some high-value opportunities to give away some leave-behinds are:

  • The first meeting with a potential client or new client as a memorable takeaway
  • A networking event, given to people you consider to be valuable lead opportunities
  • A special occasion, like client birthdays or important holidays
  • Conferences, where you can pass them out either at your own vendor booth or on chairs at seminars and workshops

Tips and tricks

Keep it short and sweet

If your leave-behind is a document or has a note attached, make it as short as possible. Give just enough information to show people what you can do and how they can benefit from your services. You can always tell them more about your business after you get that first foot in the door.

Select a gift that fits your business

There’s nothing better than a creative gift that reflects your business. Clever leave-behinds will always have a longer shelf life than generic ones, so try something that will be memorable.

Show what makes you special

Whether you’re building a leave-behind from scratch or white-labeling a template, make sure that anything you give can be traced to your business with just a passing glance. Include brand colors, taglines and any value propositions that separate you from your competition.

Don’t forget the practical information

Make it as easy as possible for potential customers to translate interest into action. Anything you give should include your business name, your logo, your website or contact email, and anything else you think is important to help people find you more quickly.