'Tis the season for giving. Accordingly, a vast majority of the consumer population turns their hearts toward donating and volunteering during the winter holidays. Not only do consumers act, they want to know the businesses they support are doing the same, in particular mega businesses banking in the millions and billions.
Most CEOs and business owners know this and, in keeping, factor charitable giving into their annual budgets especially for this time of year. However, during the holidays should not be the only instance of corporate goodwill. More so, strategic philanthropy should be part of a public relations strategy to create or evolve brand identity and structure corporate reputation.
When a company is in peril or even faces an issue, what they do every day is under the microscope. A solid public relations strategy should reflect what causes are important to its stakeholders—leadership employees, and customers.
Consider Belk, the nation’s largest privately-owned retailer. When they acquired Parisian in Birmingham, AL, it wasn’t an easy brand sell to the consumer market. One strategy they employed (with our help) was the bi-annual charity sale, which has raised more than $26 million for non-profits since 2007.
In a nutshell, a company that invests in “doing good” builds invaluable goodwill.
"In giving, a man receives more than he gives, and the more is in proportion to the worth of the thing given." —George MacDonald