AKSourceLink Blog

Tis the Season of Philanthropy

Posted by Melissa Houston on Dec 11, 2012

Christmastime is known to be the season of giving.  Salvation Army bells jingle at every corner.  Checkout lanes offer quick and convenient ways to donate to their charity of the month.  In this season of giving you may be familiar with donating and volunteering in your community as an individual, but what about as a small business owner?

Investing in your community isn’t just a good and generous thing to do; it’s a necessary part of gaining the business of your customers and support of your community that you depend upon to keep your business thriving.

Cone Inc. conducted a study in 2010 that found that 90% of consumers want to know what cause your business supports.  79% of consumers would switch to a brand associated with a good cause, and 83% wish more of the products and services they purchase and retailers they use would support causes.  With numbers like that, it only makes good business sense to associate your small business with a good cause.

Back in May 2011, Intuit.com published a blog post titled “Corporate Philanthropy for Small Businesses: How to Get Started Doing Good.”  The article outlines how to make a big impact, even as a small business.  Some highlighted suggestions from the article:

  • Go local
  • Give within your niche
  • Align your company with a complementary non-profit
  • Join 1% for the Planet
  • Hold a paid “volunteering day”

Regardless of how you choose to give, do your research first.  You don’t want to end up like iwearyourshirt.com.  They set out to do good, but didn’t do their due diligence first.  They ended up receiving quite the media backlash from it.

Finally, remember that this holiday season is not the only time of year during which it’s important to focus on giving back to your community.  The spirit of giving should be a part of your business philosophy all year-round.

Content contributed by Melissa Houston, AKSourceLink.
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