Nonprofits, how are you engaging your corporate partners in experiencing the non-cash value of your organization? When was the last time you invited your corporate partner on a site tour or a behind-the-scenes experience with your services, or asked them to participate in a volunteer opportunity?
A few years ago, I was invited to Children’s Hospital Colorado for a half-day session at the hospital. I was with a small group of other agency partners, community influencers and donors, and we spent the day meeting with doctors, sitting in clinics and touring different departments throughout the hospital. My eyes were opened to the expertise, resource needs and opportunities as well as the challenges in health care.
I also participated this spring in a Denver Public Schools Day of Service with Noble Energy and the Denver Broncos where we helped move classroom furniture at Cheltenham Elementary School, participated in field day activities and met with the principal and teachers. As a parent, education is a top priority for me, and being able to step into the hallways for the day and feel the impact of budget cuts was eye-opening. Read more after the jump…
The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has posted “Great Catch” signs across the Charleston International Airport celebrating the efforts of their security agents.
What do you discuss with your TSA agent?
Believe it or not, that’s a question I often ask myself as I approach the gatekeepers of airport security. Is it the weather? Do I venture a joke about the tumultuous sea of humanity I just traversed? Should I preemptively acknowledge the fact that my ID looks like it’s been acid washed (it does)?
Thankfully, that question was answered for me on my latest trip.
“Thank you Officer Mady,” I said to the agent. “Thanks for making sure that doubled-edged knife didn’t make it on my flight.”
But instead of simply declaring these items aren’t allowed in your carry-on (duh), beneath the images are stories about how Charleston TSA agents have detected these very items during the course of security screenings.
If 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:
Demonstrating ROI for a grant or a sponsorship is critical for nonprofits to maintain and build long-term partnerships with businesses. There are some foundations that require their own lengthy reporting, but if they don’t, read on.
Whether we’re talking about a $1,000 or $100,000 sponsorship program, nonprofits should track everything and provide a follow-up report specifically tailored to the grant/sponsorship’s support. This report doesn’t have to be a massive document; it actually should be a simple 1-5 page report, or better yet, a PowerPoint. These can be thought of as mini annual reports.
“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.
Facebook Livestream has brought communicators a fabulous storytelling tool for clients. Whether you are looking to cover an event, launch a new product, host a seminar or share news, it is a simple way to engage specific target audiences.
In fact, I recently worked with a local television station partner to amplify messaging for a public education campaign via Facebook Livestream on location and wanted to share a few tips:
• Once you determine a date/time, share that information across your social platforms to help gain an audience; repost it during and after with links to the livestream, as appropriate.
• Scout out a location beforehand and determine connections, best lighting, areas with the least noise/interruptions, etc.
• If you are outside, check on the placement of the sun and shading. Read more after the jump…
With sore backs and soaring spirits a group of dedicated staff and volunteers from Illuminate Coloradoplanted 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…
It is gala season! That means nonprofits are seeking corporate sponsorship dollars to not only help support these large events, but to help fund much needed programs throughout the year. At the same time, businesses are trying to justify community investment dollars as their budgets shrink.
If you work for a nonprofit and are preparing to meet with a corporate partner, it’s time to reevaluate your ask and look toward long-term programs with measurable return on investment (ROI). And I’m not talking about touting the number of people served or programs activated via your organization. Although these are incredibly important, they focus on your organization and not the corporate partner. You have to build a case for why the corporate partner should invest in your organization. Read more after the jump…
I love great ideas! Especially the ones that start out small but then revolutionize an industry. In 2007, a like-minded group of individuals, including Pam Warhurst and Mary Clear, wanted to find a way in which everyone could help improve their own community. Their solution: They taught their local residents to take control of their community through gardening and eating.
“The answer was food,” said Warhurst in her TED Talk. “Everyone understands food. Food gets people talking; even better, it inspires people to take action.” They started with small herb gardens and community plots in a Northern England town called Todmorden. Then they planted corn in front of a police station, fruit trees on the sides of roads, vegetables in front of the senior center, and even planted gardens in the cemetery, where “things grow really well because the soil is really good!” Read more after the jump…
This year, Patagonia announced that it would donate all Black Friday proceeds to grassroots environmental groups fighting to protect natural resources like water, oil and soil. The company expected to rake in about $2 million across its 80 global stores and Patagonia.com. In reality, Patagonia recorded $10 million in revenue – five times what the company expected – and is still promising to donate 100 percent of that revenue to the environmental groups.