Community & Green Trends

Growing Your Business With Non-Profit Partners

The current political and economic maelstrom has forced businesses to ride the roller coaster of uncertainty as they fight to retain their customers and maintain viability in the market place. Small businesses have had an especially tough challenge at a time when the book of best business practices seems to be rewritten every day. Economic uncertainty has created a consumer culture of buyer beware behavior, and Americans are becoming very savvy in the power of their dollar.

With high expectations and limited resources, how do you use the same marketing dollars to increase your ROI, brand yourself to target demographics, increase your visibility in the community, and provide your employees with leadership and training opportunities?

Partner with non-profits.

Increasing Your Visibility With Cause Branding
An easy way to increase your ROI is by spending your marketing dollars with non-profits that align with your mission and vision. But get specific about your engagement to identify how those dollars can best support the cause and your own marketing needs.

Sponsor dollars often will come with logo visibility on invitations, banners, event t-shirts, programs and collateral throughout the event. It is a quick way to get brand impression and to build support for your brand beyond just event day.

Sponsors also receive special benefits on the day of the event, including tickets that you can use to bring your clients to the event or provide to your employees as an appreciation and recognition tool.

Just as the consumer has become more sophisticated, so have the partnerships between non-profit and sponsor. Sponsors are driving new business, engaging new clients and targeting specific markets by being strategic about their sponsorships.

Employee Engagement and Satisfaction
As benefit’s budgets continue to get shaved, businesses continue to look for opportunities to increase employee satisfaction. Now, more than ever, company shareholders are becoming more engaged in their business’ support of issues and charities. Employee satisfaction yields retention, and alignment with a non-profit or cause can open a variety of engagement levels for employees and increase job satisfaction.

Skill Based Volunteering
Provide the professional skills and expertise of your staff to help a non-profit better run their business. Do you have a bookkeeper on staff that can provide a few hours a week of volunteer time? Do you have an in-house graphic design team that could tackle a project on the side?

Leadership Opportunities
Increase your network and grow your staff’s leadership skills by encouraging them to serve on a board of directors or an event planning committee. They will meet new people in the community, they will gain recognition for their work and for your company and they will feel like they can dedicate their time to a cause they care about.

Build Company Loyalty
Whether through a matching gift program, a company volunteer day in the community or the opportunity to provide leadership and key skills, more employees are saying that their company’s involvement in the community is a key reason for their loyalty to the company.

Fifty-seven percent of employees surveyed in 2010 stated that their company’s commitment to addressing social and environmental issues is one of the reasons they choose to work for a company.

By Samantha Swaim


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