Tomorrow, June 15, 2018 is Worldwide Day of Giving. Last year, we featured a collection of Hera Hub members who established their companies for doing good. One of those featured founders was Renee Zau, of Donation Match. This year, we asked if she would share her take on the impact that giving back.
Some may think that only large businesses have the ability to be giving back to society. For example, when you purchase a pair of TOMS shoes, the company will match the purchase with a new pair of shoes for a child in need. Or Warby Parker has the “buy a pair, give a pair program”, which means that for every pair of glasses sold, a pair is distributed to someone in need. Corporate social responsibility programs are on the rise and often managed by well-funded organizations.
However, giving back to society isn’t simply an initiative for large businesses. Small businesses can also take part in corporate social responsibility. By giving back it not only provides benefit to society but can be an advantage to the business as well. Even small businesses can make big impacts. Below are 5 ways that a small business can give back.
Donating Money to Charity
This is the most commonly known method for a company giving back, by simply donating money to a charity or cause. A company can donate a portion of sales, collect funds from employees, or simply make a corporate donation. Sometimes companies will also look to sponsor an upcoming event or sports team, such as little league. Don’t be afraid to think outside of the box for this option of donating money. For example, Picaboo, a printing service that creates personalized photo books and products, holds online fundraisers for causes and donates a percentage of sales to that specific cause.
Donating Items to Charity
If it isn’t the right time or situation to be donating money to a charity, look to donate slightly used items to a charity, such as office supplies, tables, or chairs. Many of these items will be very useful for an organization to receive. Or consider donating your office itself as a temporary venue or meeting space for a charity’s upcoming event. Hera Hub, an international co-working space, selectively donates their office space to nonprofit organizations associated with members.
Donating Skills or Services
Don’t forget about the expertise and knowledge that you bring to the table. All of the skills and knowledge that you have acquired over the years can be a value to charities. Charities often need business expertise. What you take for granted that you know how to do can be new knowledge for those who don’t do it for a living.
You may have a specialized skill that could be of real value to others. Consider volunteering your time, teaching a class, speaking at an event, or being on a board of directors. Other examples may include an employee volunteering at a food bank or an accountant setting up a bookkeeping system for a charitable business.
Donating Company Products or Services to a Fundraiser
A great way to receive marketing for your organization while also helping a good cause is to donate company products or services to a fundraiser. For example, consider donating a gift certificate or gift basket from your company to a charity gala, conference, 5k run, or golf tournament. These events are always looking to receive product donations and would be happy to mention your brand in return for a product or service donation.
If you need assistance in finding these local events, you can use DonationMatch.com, a platform that connects charitable events with companies looking to provide donations. Using the platform can help to ensure you are reaching your company’s ideal target audience at the events you select.
Utilizing Your Business Network
Lastly, don’t forget that even having business and client connections that you are able to share can be a value to a charitable cause. Helping with word of mouth marketing or providing introductions to others can expand a charity’s donor and volunteer base. Connecting a charity to a philanthropist business partner or sharing a cause with your customer base can be a huge value to the organization.Having business and client connections that you are able to share can be a value to a charitable cause. Helping with word of mouth marketing or providing introductions to others can expand a charity’s donor and volunteer base. - Renee Zau… Click To Tweet
With today being considered Worldwide Day of Giving, the ask is for people to give $10 to a stranger. But why not try one of these methods above with your business as well. Feel free to test out the waters and as you become more confident in these methods of giving, you may want to combine a few of these efforts together. You may be surprised to see how much value your company can receive in return from corporate social responsibility.
About DonationMatch: DonationMatch is a company based on San Diego, CA. Founded in 2010, DonationMatch connects companies with philanthropic events and has facilitated over $36 million in-kind donations for cause events. DonationMatch, founded and led by CEO Renee Zau, was recently named to the SheEO “Top 25 Ventures” list for U.S.-based companies in 2017.