Category Archives: Cause Marketing

Giving Back: 2017 Community Impact Report

Community Impact Report 2017Giving back is embedded in our culture and is a core value of GroundFloor Media and CenterTable.

Since our inception in 2001, we have been committed to investing in our community. This is reflected through cash contributions, pro bono public relations and digital marketing services, reduced billing rates for nonprofit clients, community service and paid time off for GroundFloor Media and CenterTable team members to volunteer with various community organizations and causes.

We typically aren’t braggadocios, but as a small business, we are very proud of our efforts as a company and the impact our employees make in the community. For the first time ever, we’ve compiled a Community Impact Report. It is a cumulative overview of our grants through our Get Grounded Foundation, financial matches through our Get Grounded Volunteer Program, Get Giving days of service, being named a Certified B Corporation, membership in giving organizations and participation on a variety of boards and committees.

As you can see from our annual report, all of us wholeheartedly believe that giving back in all shapes and forms strengthens our community, brings people together, provides us with valuable experience and insight and offers balance to our personal and professional lives.

Why ‘Purpose’ is Crucial for CSR efforts in 2018

Holding the world in your hands; Photo credit: Ken Teegardin

Photo credit: Ken Teegardin

“Purpose is more than just a trend, it’s the new norm. Americans have expectations of companies to lead with Purpose by not just making money, but positively impacting society as well. Companies need to identify, communicate and live their Purpose to maintain relevance, trust and competitive advantage.”

~ 2018 Cone/Porter Novelli Purpose Study

Cone Communications has been studying corporate social responsibility (CSR) in America for 25 years. This year, they focused on the concept of a company’s Purpose. They examine this concept from a number of angles in their recently released 2018 Cone/Porter Novelli Purpose Study. I’d like to take a look at three specific points: Authenticity, Brand Loyalty, and the Intersection of Purpose & Social Justice.

Read more after the jump…

Business Success Boils Down to Purpose

Company Strategy Compass

Connecting strategy to purpose will help create shared value and it just might change our world.

Business success boils down to purpose. It is the No. 1 driver behind successful companies and aligns with the pursuit of profit. How a company acts on its purpose links to branding, customer loyalty, employee retention and stakeholder engagement.

Fast Company’s Sherry Hakimi said, “A purpose mobilizes people in a way that pursuing profits alone never will. For a company to thrive, it needs to infuse its purpose in all that it does.”

Bottom line, without purpose, a company is just managing people and resources. With purpose, a company mobilizes and engages people and resources. Read more after the jump…

Top CSR Companies That “Walk the Walk” in 2017

As the year wraps up it is time to look at the top CSR companies that “walk the walk” not just “talk the talk” when it comes to putting socially responsible practices into action.

CSR initiatives have many advantages that can be applied to any business, regardless of its size or sector.

As the year wraps up it is time to look at the top CSR companies that “walk the walk” not just “talk the talk” when it comes to putting socially responsible practices into action. These are the companies that demonstrate a commitment to their local and global community. Here are a few companies leading the way:

Bosch Group: For the Bosch Group, a German multinational engineering and electronics company, sustainability means securing the company’s long-term success while at the same time helping protect the environment for current and future generations. The company continues to operate by the values of founder Robert Bosch, who said, “I have always acted according to the principle that it is better to lose money than trust.”

  • Program Highlight:  Ninety-two percent of the share capital of Robert Bosch GmbH is held by Robert Bosch, which spends dividends exclusively on charitable initiatives. At the same time, the Bosch Group’s corporate structure helps ensure its financial independence and enables the company to plan for the long-term and make investments that secure its future. Bosch focuses on four sustainability-related areas of activity: environment, products, associates, and society.

Read more after the jump…

Will Millennials Drive Socially Responsible Marketing Practices?

Millennials want companies to pay attention to how they are marketing and do so in a social responsible way | GroundFloor Media PR Agency

Millennials want companies to pay attention to how they are marketing and do so in a social responsible way.

Millennials just might be the key to driving socially responsible marketing practices. They want the companies they patronize to practice business sustainably and ethically. Not only that, they want companies to pay attention to how they are marketing and do so in a socially responsible way. Why should we listen? Because by 2030 millennials will outnumber boomers by 22 million per a Pew Research Center report.

Here’s a few more stats to consider from Nielson’s Global Corporate Sustainability Report published in 2015:

Read more after the jump…

Nonprofit Sector: Are You Creating Shared Value for Your Corporate Partners?

Prof. Michael Porter, Harvard University explains the difference between Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and Creating Shared Value (CSV)

Prof. Michael Porter, Harvard University explains the difference between Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and Creating Shared Value (CSV)

Nonprofits creating shared value for their corporate partners are seeing impacts to their fundraising efforts and the role of their organization in a community. The term, Creating Shared Value (CSV), is where nonprofits collaborate with companies to build meaningful and impactful partnerships to advance positive social change.

Jocelyne Daw, a recognized pioneer and leading expert in the evolution of authentic business and community partnerships, explains CSV as follows, “Creating Shared Value is a new form of corporate community involvement. Shared value is created when companies generate economic value for themselves in a way that simultaneously produces value for society by addressing social and environmental challenges.”

Daw explains that companies undertaking shared value initiatives need community partners to help them reconceive markets and services; build clusters; or reduce the costs in their value chain. “Shared value initiatives require the expertise, experience and knowledge of the community sector. At its heart, shared value requires cross-sector collaboration and deep partnerships,” Daw says.

Gone are the days where corporate partners are seen only as funders. Nonprofits need to seek common goals and build programs of mutual benefit. CSV initiatives provide support beyond philanthropy and are an added benefit to what companies are already contributing in their communities. “Shared value allows companies to generate value for themselves as they identify the immense human needs that must be met, large new markets to be served, and the internal costs of social deficits—as well as the competitive advantages available from addressing them,” Daw says.

What does this look like? In an article from the Harvard Business Review, businesses like Nestlé, Johnson & Johnson, and Unilever have incorporated this concept into their partnership programs. “Nestlé, for example, redesigned its coffee procurement processes, working intensively with small farmers in impoverished areas who were trapped in a cycle of low productivity, poor quality and environmental degradation. Nestlé provided advice on farming practices; helped growers secure plant stock, fertilizers, and pesticides; and began directly paying them a premium for better beans. Higher yields and quality increased the growers’ incomes, the environmental impact of farms shrank, and Nestlé’s reliable supply of good coffee grew significantly. Shared value was created,” says Michael E. Porter, of Harvard Business School, and Mark R. Kramer, the managing director of the social impact advisory firm FSG.

We’ll be hearing and seeing more about CSV partnerships in the coming years. They provide a competitive advantage and anything that impacts the bottom line can’t be ignored. It will be exciting to see which organizations embrace these changes moving forward and how they continue to affect communities.

Building Communities Together: Nonprofit & Corporate Partnerships

Get Connected: Building Communities Together - A Panel Discussion on Nonprofit and Corporate Partnerships | GroundFloor Media & CenterTable

Creating a community of care. Colorado leaders converge at @GroundFloorPR to learn about partnerships #GFMpartnerships

Building community partnerships between nonprofit organizations and businesses, with the goal of tackling seemingly intractable social problems, is a long-term strategy. Not only is the private sector interested in addressing difficult social issues, but it may also have other business goals around providing meaningful employee engagement opportunities, showing shareholders a strong ROI, and coming together as a united team to make a difference in a community.

GroundFloor Media and CenterTable assembled a group of local community and business leaders for a panel discussion at our Get Connected event earlier this month. The focus was a discussion on how they are forging new alliances and breaking new ground to build a better community.

The Get Connected panelists included:

  • Andrea Fulton, Deputy Director and CMO, Denver Art Museum
  • Diana Ralston, Executive Director of The Can’d Aid Foundation and the Director of Sponsorships for Oskar Blues Brewery
  • Jim Johnston, Senior Marketing Manager, Bellco Credit Union
  • Ned Breslin, CEO, Tennyson Center for Children
  • Patsy Landaveri, Senior Community Affairs Advisor, Noble Energy

Read more after the jump…

Meeting With a Corporate Partner For a Sponsorship? Be Prepared.

6 Tips To Prepare For a Sponsorship Meeting With a Corporate Partner | GroundFloor Media PR Agency in DenverIf you are meeting with a corporate partner to discuss a sponsorship proposal or charitable donation request, be prepared. Just as you would prepare for a new business meeting or job interview, you have one shot to make the best possible impression, so do your homework and come to the meeting prepared. The key to success? It should be all about them.

Whether you have worked with a corporate partner for multiple years or you are meeting for the first time, here’s what to research, prepare and bring to the meeting:

Read more after the jump…

The Current State of CSR in America

Corporate Social Responsibility 2017 Report

Photo Credit: Cone Communications

“2017 will be remembered as the year that redefined corporate social responsibility. Although CSR will always be grounded in business operations…the stakes have gotten a lot higher. Companies must now share not only what they are doing, but what they believe in.”

 ~ 2017 Cone Communications CSR Study

Cone Communications recently released the results of its annual CSR study, and as usual, it was packed with great insights for cause marketers. While a full breakdown of the study results can be found on Cone Communications’ website, I want to focus on three points in particular.

Read more after the jump…

How to Break a World Record

With sore backs and soaring spirits a group of dedicated staff and volunteers from Illuminate Colorado IMG_9991aplanted pinwheel number 2,009, completing their attempt to break a world record for most pinwheels in a line (the current record is 1,000). Illuminate Colorado, a network of four established organizations partnering to build brighter childhoods and prevent child abuse for kids in Colorado, successfully raised awareness for their cause with their world record attempt, securing local media coverage and reaching thousands of people in-person and across TV and digital channels.

Recently, GFM had the opportunity to work closely with a client interested in raising awareness for their brand and cause, but in a month crowded by other organizations looking to do the same, the real challenge was how to stand out. Together, we decided to attempt to break a Guinness Book of World Records (Guinness) record with the goal of earning media coverage and gathering content to leverage on social media.

Like digging a trench in your yard, breaking a world record can seem straightforward, but once you start moving earth you might run into unexpected gas or sewer lines. It’s best to take time to consider what you’re getting into before you dig in. Here are our lessons learned. Read more after the jump…