How supporting a good cause can give back to you both
A survey out last month showed a sharp drop in the number of consumers able to identify a single brand which they associate with good causes – dropping from two-thirds last year to just half this year – highlighting a disconnect between good deeds and wider recognition. However, the MediaCom report also found that 60% of consumers are prepared to pay more for brands which make a positive contribution to society.
Charitable causes have long offered an avenue for brands to both aid wider society and win over new consumers but while more businesses are aligning themselves with a cause to convince consumers that they hold genuine values as a company, it’s clear that communicating brand purpose is not hitting home in many cases.
Perhaps this is because to create an effective partnership, it’s vital that the brand or product is not only relevant but complements your own and that there are clear opportunities for you to help. Take one of our clients, Glaisyers Solicitors LLP: to support their private client work, we helped them to partner with a charity whose work helps an audience which they really understood. We approached a number of charities across the North West on their behalf, and the team decided that Manchester- based Together Dementia Support, which offers support and therapeutic activities for people living with dementia, their carers and supporters in Manchester, was an excellent fit. Glaisyers will now compile advice led content on LPA and other subjects of interest for use on Together Dementia Support’s website and newsletter, while the charity has expressed an interest in coming into Glaisyers and presenting an introduction to their work to get employees engaged with the cause.
Here’s three ways working with the right charity can benefit both parties:
- It can enable you to take advantage of new opportunities and make a bigger impact
A strategic partnership built over time, where the business and charity promote the relationship reciprocally, is more powerful than a one-off instance of giving. Through continued involvement both organisations are exposed to the other’s network of contacts providing a greater pool of potential customer/donators and build a greater brand awareness level within the community than could be done alone.
- It can give you more exposure and expand your target audience
Because a partnership provides you with an expanded target audience, it also means that you’ll be able to on the radar of an entirely new group of people who were already interested in what your partner had to offer, and who value the fact that they wanted to work with you. Instead of targeting your customer base and those with similar interests, you get to expand your efforts and market to a whole new group of people who may not have even heard of you yet.
- It can improve your public image
If you’re partnering with a brand that is already established, you’ll take on some of the reputation they already have. This can mean your new audience will feel trust and loyalty towards you more quickly; if the company or individual you’ve partnered with has a reputation for doing social good, that association can boost your public image. Giving back to the community and getting involved in social good is a great way to improve your image and fulfil your social responsibility.
Of course, it must be authentic – consumers are quick to see through partnerships that exist purely for transactional gains rather than shared values. So, do it for the right reasons. When embarking on a charity initiative, consider the sort of giving that you’d like to be involved in and why you’re doing it. If corporate charity is undertaken as an obligation or as a means of self-promotion, this will show through in your efforts, and no matter how great your giving, it won’t be seen as sincere. This comes back to the importance of authenticity – something we’ve written about before. One organisation that has done this very successfully is Network Rail who partnered with the Samaritans with the aim of reducing the number of suicides on the railways. This has resulted in a reduction in railway deaths, increased awareness of the Samaritans and the issues around suicide and a reduction in costs for Network Rail.
Could your business benefit from collaborating with another brand or social media influencer? Why not get in touch? You never know, we might find you the perfect match.