Tag Archives: nonprofits

Your CSR Should Match Your Brand

Your corporate social responsibility (CSR) is more than a piece of paper or an annual holiday drive – it’s an extension of your brand. These efforts can range from giving small donations to a charity to implementing environmentally friendly practices organization-wide.

Therefore, what cause you choose to support or work toward will have a direct effect on your brand presence and respectability.

Why is CSR so important?

A solid CSR strategy allows companies to improve their public image, increase their media coverage, boost employee engagement levels and retain and attract key investors. It also enables businesses to attract and retain employees. After all, Millennials are known to care about community involvement efforts and Gen X are the most likely to become involved.

The community benefits, too. Nonprofits can receive increased funding, in-kind donations (equipment, swag, etc.), more volunteers, a strong corporate partnership and varied sources of revenue.

How can your CSR match your brand?

Choosing the right CSR program is crucial for its success. Instead of randomly picking an organization or cause, or many organizations and causes, pick the ones that clearly align with your organization’s goals, vision and future.

CSROne way to ensure that the CSR matches your brand is making sure it has a logical tie to your business operations. For example, a software company may choose to support education, including girls in STEM programs. A legal firm could align with free or low-cost law services provided by nonprofits.

Another way to match your CSR with your brand is to get your employees involved. Hold Q&As and issue company-wide surveys to discover what charities and causes your employees believe are important. This way, you’ll be matching your CSR not only with your brand, but the employees your brand represents.

Matching brands improves giving

With one-off donations and drives, there’s less of a relationship between company and nonprofit. To the nonprofit, employees there are worried about whether its a one-time gift or recurring one. Because they may not be prepared for the gift again the next year, it’s less successful.

Partnerships where brands match (nonprofit and business) mean there’s already more common ground and a higher likelihood that giving will repeat. That repeat donation (time and/or money) creates a bigger impact because the nonprofit is more apt to serve more people with their mission.

Improve your social responsibility

Time magazine called companies that ignore their social responsibility “suicidal.”

You could argue community involvement makes a company more successful through all of the items above — recruiting, retention, PR and visibility, tax deductions, etc. It could lead to even more business; people want to purchase from companies who believe what they believe. This includes the company’s CSR.

And at its core, businesses should give back because it’s the right thing to do.

Great Tech and Good Causes Aren’t Mutually Exclusive

One of the most common schools of thought today regarding nonprofit versus for-profit work is that you can either do what you love for less or do what you hate and earn a lot. For many IT professionals, great technology and good causes also seem to be mutually exclusive.

Their work is challenging because of their conflicting desire to digitally revolutionize their office with their nonprofit’s limited budget. But what if we said that innovative technology and meaningful work don’t have to be at odds?

Save donor money and support your organization

nonprofit, collaboration, technology

While dynamic software tools, such as CRM and data collection solutions, are on the rise, even for small nonprofits across world, you may need to find

more cost-effective ways to help your nonprofit succeed without emptying out the company bank account. Here are just a couple ways you can achieve this goal:

Revamp your website, email marketing and social media approach.

Maybe your website is too cluttered or not interactive enough to promote easy donation. Perhaps you are inconsistent with your email marketing campaign or posting onto your organization’s Facebook or Twitter pages. Whatever is the case, you need to get serious and leverage these technologies for your nonprofit’s best interest. As there are plenty of free or low cost websites, social media platforms and marketing software available, you should take advantage of them to raise brand awareness and donations for your organization!

Revolutionize the collaborative work environment.

As a nonprofit, you most likely have multiple offices across the country or world that you need to keep track on. This is why ReadyTalk’s FoxDen video conferencing solution will solve any of your communication, productivity, connection or employee engagement issues at the click of your mouse. Instead of relying on poor connections and streaming services, our web, mobile app and in-house hardware web conferencing solutions will provide your employees with flawless resolution and connections, making meetings a breeze – no matter where you are. Not only is it secure and data is easily stored on the cloud, but it’s an affordable solution that will keep your organization succeeding and collaborating for years to come.

What Should You Know About Marketing in the Nonprofit World?

A quality marketing strategy is a key tool enterprises use to draw in new business and improve their local or international standing. Why should your nonprofit be any different? You need consistent funding to expand your programs and services. Meanwhile, you may be competing for donations with hundreds of other organizations in your particular field. You need an engaging marketing campaign or plan to achieve these goals or overcome any hurdles along the way.

Why does marketing matter in the nonprofit sector?

One purpose of your nonprofit may be to “raise awareness” about a particular issue or plight for a group of people. While people may be unaware of the details surrounding the problem or need, raising awareness without a specific marketing strategy is ineffective. You won’t be able to reach the wide audience you need to bring about real change. This is why marketing matters.

Increase employee engagementNo doubt you’re also asked to help constituents — you can use marketing there too. You can’t serve people if they don’t know you exist.

And lastly, donors and grantfunders as well as other important partners, to help generate the revenue so you can fulfill the mission of your nonprofit.

Marketing strategies that will bring your donor base and organization to life

Stop focusing on one-time donations and pivot to monthly or bi-monthly gifts. Network for Good, an online fundraising platform for nonprofits and charities, found that the average recurring donors generally give 42 percent more during a year’s time than one-time givers. To draw in this continual donor base, you must implement innovative marketing strategies, such as content marketing, webinars and more.

Today, people don’t want to just be “talked at” or repeatedly hit over the head about why they should give or support your cause. They want to come to this conclusion on their own. This is why content marketing is essential. You can create thought leadership articles, social media posts and videos that start a conversation. Then, you will be there to provide the answers and guide them your way.

Meanwhile, webinars are the perfect way to reach a wider audience from the comfort and cost-effectiveness of our own office. You can convey your message in an easily digestible way that your audience can watch on the go or on their own time. This way, you’ll be reaching your potential donors where they’re at and not seeming to be overly pushy.

Focus on results

What has your nonprofit done to change the world or make it a better place? You need stories — again content marketing –collaboration within nonproft– to bring awareness. This is how you’ve impacted people. And you may say, “I’m not in a nonprofit that focuses on people.” People still can benefit. For example, if your nonprofit helps the environment, you may’ve changed people’s lives for the better — whether they’re near the Amazon where trees are now being saved or residents who’ve had water issues.

Also part of results is showing, in numbers, what’s changed because of your organization. These days, according to GuideStar, people want to see in numbers too where the money is going. That’s up to you. But the more transparent you are, the better the chance people will give to you. Besides, even if you have high overhead, you can explain it by the things you do for employees — if that’s where the money is going. For example, if you provide benefits, you may still attract givers who align to your values and your mission.

What Is Cause Marketing and Why It’s Important for Your Business

Marketers are looking for more ways to connect with people while advertising. One of the best ways is through something called “cause marketing.”

What is cause marketing?

brainstormCause marketing is the mutual cooperation between a for-profit and a nonprofit business to raise money or awareness for a particular cause or organization, while simultaneously supporting their own brand. Some of the most popular and influential examples of effective cause marketing campaigns are the 1,000 Playgrounds in 1,000 Days from 2005 to 2008, the ongoing Dove Campaign for Real Beauty since 2004 and the continued Product (Red) campaign since 2006.

Since 2002, IEG has issued reports that indicate that cause marketing has grown exponentially over the past few years. From $816 million in 2002, to a predicted $2 billion in 2016, there is strong evidence that cause marketing will continue to rise in years to come.

Who does cause marketing appeal to?

Everyone.

And yet according to research Millennials are the demographic that connects the most to causes. The recent Deloitte Millennial Survey 2016 found that 6 out of 10 millennial workers said that a sense of purpose is the main reason they chose their current company. In general, it seems younger generations are more in tune with charitable giving and feeling like they are making a difference in their everyday lives.

When choosing between two similar brands, Gen Y are more likely to choose to buy from the company that has a strong cause marketing campaign or possesses a fervent desire to help those in need or the environment. Additionally, recent millennial impact research suggests that the vast majority of millennials feel the need to trust the cause they are giving – and they would stop giving if they felt that trust was lost. To capitalize on this unique demographic, businesses must be careful about which nonprofit they partner with and what message they intend to support.

It can be time, money, in-kind donations, or all of those

The great thing many times about cause marketing is that how you give depends on what you have to give. If you’re a technology company, you can give in-kind donations — old laptops, servers, keyboards, mobile devices, etc. If you’re a legal firm, you can give back with services — legal advice. If you’re a creative agency, you can put together some killer programs and flyers.

You can sanction employees to work on your behalf. Many companies do this for Habitat for Humanity and a variety of other organizations like PBS.

And of course, your company can provide money — even offering up the opportunity to match whatever employees give.

Choose the right nonprofit for your business

While a large majority of consumers report that a quality partnership between a brand they like and a cause they believe in makes the campaign most appealing, there are still concerns. For example, if customers believe in a particular nonprofit’s mission, but sees that it partners with a business they don’t trust or believe in, they may view this act as insincere or manipulative.

For this reason, businesses must ensure that their cause marketing campaign aligns authentically with that of their particular brand, service or product. This way, they can successfully support the cause they are highlighting, along with the brand name they wish to push in order to draw in more loyal customers.

How to get started

Cause marketingResearch companies that align to your brand — mission, vision, constituents / customers — around a topic your company cares deeply about. For example, if you’re a green landscaping business, maybe you want to support nonprofits who take care of the environment. If you’re a children’s resale shop, maybe you want to ensure children’s health or education. Restaurants might consider working with food banks.

Even nonprofits can do cause marketing. Consider partnering with like-minded organizations that might be considered “competitors” to work toward the common good.

In this way, you’re appealing to new and current customers while doing something good. Everyone benefits.