Use corporate giving to improve your bottom line
Are you a keen advocate of corporate giving? Do you see it as an effective strategy for improving your bottom line? Or do you just make token contributions to worthy causes while remaining unconvinced of its benefit?
Contribution to profitability
Approached in the right way, corporate giving can make a substantial contribution to your profitability. It can:
- Improve both the motivation and the commitment of employees
- Strengthen customer/client loyalty
- Create good publicity and add considerable leverage to marketing campaigns
Indeed, it can be a major factor in the overall performance of your business.
But you need a well-thought-out strategy with clear objectives, planned implementation, and regular monitoring of results.
Appeal to your stakeholders
Choose the cause or causes you support carefully. Make sure they resonate well not only with the public at large but also with your stakeholders - your customers, employees, suppliers, investors, and local community.
When stakeholders are positively disposed to your company almost everything that drives business success is enhanced:
- Customers are happy to buy from you and to recommend you to others
- Employees are proud to be part of the company and identify more closely with its success
- Suppliers are keen to share the kudos by building a stronger relationship with you
- Investors increase their confidence in you and are more ready to back you
- The community becomes generally more supportive
It is important to display a genuine interest in the objectives of the cause you support.
No one expects a business to be philanthropic just for the sake of it. Indeed, most shareholders would have reservations about the idea of charitable support that had no apparent payback. But equally, any attempts to generate publicity should be handled sensitively, as people do not like to feel that a company is exploiting a charitable cause for commercial ends.
Very often, the most effective kind of corporate sponsorship involves participation in the cause's core activities at local level rather than grandstanding at high profile events.