People like to talk about the win-win in the world of business. Win-wins have really never been better personified than with cause-based marketing. Your company gets to raise its profile and a worthy cause gets a much needed helping hand.
You probably knew that the NFL is doing great work raising awareness for breast cancer, and have seen the pink Nikes on Sundays in October. But did you know they’ve raised over $13 million for the cause?
You may not bring in $13 million, but you can combine your real estate marketing with awareness to bolster your brand while also making the world a better place.
Promote Your Work the Right Way
Of course, you’re going to want to tell the world about your efforts, but you need to do so tastefully and tactfully on your website, social media, print marketing, and free giveaways.
The key is to mind the voice you use, and what you focus on. Remember, focus on your cause, not the work you’re doing for them. Don’t say, “Hey check out what we did for the Boys and Girls Club.” Say, “The Boys and Girls Club are doing incredible work and we feel blessed to work with them.”
Anything else will look like you’re in it only for the publicity, and not interested in the cause at all.
Choose the Right Causes
You want to make sure that you choose causes that you really believe in. It’s even better if you have a personal connection or story that helps others see the value of the charity. The NFL is made up of men, of course, but they still have moving stories of women they know affected by breast cancer.
If your cause needs something related to your business, you can also volunteer expertise and time. Consider what it would mean as a Realtor® to help your favorite charity find a new office or building, or help them connect to a mortgage broker you know can help them.
“The company might be able to provide some of its own internal expertise, for instance in the form of employees offering their time and talents,” said David Hagenbuch, Professor of Marketing at Messiah College and Founder of MindfulMarketing.org.
“Such volunteerism tends to be more meaningful to the participants than simply the knowledge that their employer cut a check to a cause.”
Build Your Message in Partnership with the Cause
Remember, this a partnership. So always be mindful of the charity or non-profits’ brand. They likely have fiercely loyal fans and members who will notice if you take any liberties with your messaging.
“Think of cause marketing as you would any other brand collaboration with for profit companies,” said Clif Bar’s Brooke Golden.
“Find a cause whose advocates share your consumer’s profile, understand their networks and strengths and identify where you can come together around a shared voice and message to amplify both your efforts.”
Build Charity into Your Offerings
You don’t have to make one big donation, or volunteer at a single event. You can work it into your everyday operations by publicly donating a fixed percentage of your sales to the charity of your choice. Or, even the charity of your clients’ choice, if you want to take it to the next level.
This shows people that you’re serious about the cause and are willing to literally sacrifice money out of your own pocket. This gives your customers a fuzzy feeling when working with you, as you give them a chance to contribute.
Ralph Lauren’s Pink Pony campaign is an amazing example of this. For every piece of pink pony merchandise sold, 25 percent goes to support cancer care and prevention.
“The line is beneficial to the fight against cancer and profitable. For many customers, a pink pony purchase represents a foray into charitable giving they wouldn’t otherwise have made, not to mention a wearable badge for the cause,” wrote Coppy Holzman, Founder and CEO, Charitybuzz.
“The higher the sales, the greater the awareness. It’s a win for everyone.”
So always try to work with a charity that is tied in some way to your business or your personal life. This will make it easier for you to work with their brand in mind when creating your own messaging. Also, always remember that charity doesn’t have to be limited to events; it can be an everyday thing.
Consider doing some giveaways for breast cancer awareness, which is coming up next month. We have some specially priced offerings you can use – click here to check them out!