Whether you run a small business, operate a franchise or work for a Parks & Recreation department, the fourth quarter of the year presents an amazing opportunity to give back and make meaningful contributions to our communities. With consumers being four to six times more likely to purchase, protect and champion “purpose-driven” companies (Forbes, 2020), it’s likely that you’ve felt pressure to incorporate charitable initiatives into your business plan, which can be overwhelming on top of your regular goals. So how do you do so while still ensuring you increase participation and spread the word about your brand?
Whether it’s Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Movember, Giving Tuesday, or another charitable event, we’ve got ideas that will sure to be a win-win for your community AND your organization!
Let’s get started with some ideas for making a difference:
#1 Lead a fundraising campaign
These are great ways to increase your brand awareness and reach more members of your community, while also working toward a good cause and aligning your organization with philanthropic values.
- Run a social media campaign with a branded hashtag and donate $1 for each use (for more social media tips, download our free guide here)
- For Movember, encourage folks at your organization who can grow facial hair to form a team, create a campaign and share photos on your company social media accounts, which can be re-shared via employees’ personal accounts if they choose
- Offer to donate a portion of proceeds from an activity, program or event (such as tickets for a guest speaker or a member appreciation cocktail) to a charity of your choice
- Throughout the month of November, encourage employees to donate to a campaign for Giving Tuesday (and if you can, match what they contribute!) as an alternative to a campaign for Black Friday
#2 Donate to a food bank or toy bank
Two words: team bonding. Help your employees get to know each other and create memories while making a difference at a toy drive or food bank. You can ask parents of older kids to donate toys that their kids don’t use anymore, and anyone can bring in non-perishable foods to donate. We suggest taking an afternoon off and heading to a food bank or toy bank in your city. If you can, offer paid volunteer hours to the team! Not to mention it’s a great photo op for your social media channels 😉 and you could even see if a local newspaper or online publication will spread the word about it!
#3 Create a challenge for your employees or community
With a charitable incentive, you’ll find registrations will increase and your brand will be associated with a sense of purpose, which will keep folks coming back!
- For example, you can create a workout challenge where for each person who registers for a class within a 30-day period, a portion of proceeds get donated. This means more revenue for your organization as well as the charity you choose to support!
- In the same vein, you could ask participants to bring a buddy to their activity and the fee for the visitor gets donated, which is great for bringing in potential new members to do a trial run!
- You can also organize a charity run for cancer research or another cause, which will also foster team spirit
More ways you can get involved and make a difference
- Donate finished art projects, toys or games to a retirement community or hospital
- Create a philanthropic committee (see tips here)
- Sponsor an event in your neighborhood
- Partner with another organization to offer a special program
Giving back has loads of other benefits for you and your organization!
- Building leadership skills – could be an opportunity to give folks at your organization more responsibility
- Retaining talent – read more in this article
- Connect with your community online or in person
- Show gratitude for the community that supports you (that’s why choosing a local charity can make a huge difference!)
- Align a cause with your company values
While there are plenty of opportunities to give back as an organization in the last few months of the year, it’s never a bad time to reflect on your values and the actions we can all take to make a difference. As we head into 2023, why not add “develop my organization’s philanthropic efforts” to your list of resolutions?