How to Get New Value from Your Subscription Box Gift Recipients

If you are a subscription box company, you know that end-of-the-year gift giving will generate a significant part of your revenue for your business. But how can you turn one-off purchases into sustainable recurring revenue?

Most, if not all, of your retention marketing is primarily focused on your paying, active subscribers. We’ll show you how to earn new revenue from the untapped segment of your gift recipients.

These techniques can be used by any consumer-based subscription product that is frequently bought as a gift.

Why Gift Recipients Are Different

Gift recipients are your ideal potential customers. Their friends have already done the leg work to determine that they will find value in your product, and they’ve been receiving your product for a certain amount of time. They should be perfectly primed to love and desire your product! The challenge then is getting them to pay for it, which is especially challenging because they were receiving it for free.

Dedicated Messaging

Message your gift recipients differently than your active subscribers. You need to show the value and explain why your product is worth paying for each month. We’ll get into a few examples on how to do this, but first, let’s start with the technical aspect of setting up drip campaigns.

In whatever system you use for your drip campaigns, you’ll need individual profiles for your gift recipients. Many platforms will pass gift recipient information as part of the profile of the gift purchaser, but that won’t do in this case as you’ll want track and measure this segment of users’ progression from gift recipient to paying customer. If you use Cratejoy as your subscription box platform, our direct integration automatically creates profiles for gift recipients—we’ve done the hard work for you.

The Cratejoy integration automatically creates profiles for the gift recipients – so you can start messaging them instantly.

3 Gift Recipient Conversion Campaigns

Once you’ve set up gift recipients with their own profiles, you’re ready to start sending them tailored, conversion-driven messages. Here are three conversions you should try.

Become a Paying Subscriber

In an ideal scenario, gift recipients will become active subscribers once their gift expires. If they really love your product, that might just happen!

More likely, gift recipients may be hesitant to start paying for something they previously received for free. Message them a special discount around the time their last gift box arrives. That’s when they’ll be most enamored with your product and most likely to convert—especially if you incentivize them.

Buy as a Gift for Others

Depending on your type of subscription, it might make the most sense to position yourselves as a gift the gift recipient should give to others. They will know first hand what a perfect gift your product makes! You can time these messages around traditional gift-giving occasions: holidays, birthday, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, etc.

Separately, you could also suggest the gift recipient buys your product for the person who originally bought it for them as a way of returning the love. You could time these messages for when the last gift box arrives, or if you have the original purchaser’s birthday, you could go the extra personalized route and message around that time.

Join Your Community on Social

Sometimes you won’t be able to make a sale right away. In that case, try bringing the gift recipient into your broader community by messing them to follow you on your social channels. From there, you’ll be able to stay top of mind, and when the time is right, that gift recipient will come back to purchase.

In Conclusion

Have other ways of reaching out to your gift subscribers? Let us know on twitter or email us at