Philanthropy for the Socially Conscious Business

Did you know that adding a strategic philanthropic plan to your business model can positively impact your bottom line, enhance your presence in the community, and increase employee satisfaction?

Consider these compelling statistics:

Guest blog by Cleveland Foundation Director of Development and Donor Communications, Michelle Fritz

Guest blog by Cleveland Foundation Director of Development and Donor Communications Michelle Fritz

Align with a Purpose

Today’s consumers want simple, convenient ways to harness their purchasing power to positively impact the world, and businesses that can appeal to both a customer’s wallet and heart are reaping the benefits.

85% of consumers have a more positive image of a product or company when it supports a charity about which they care[1]. Plus, 55% of consumers say they are willing to pay more for products and services provided by companies that are committed to positive social and environmental impact[2]. Overnight successful shoe company TOMS – valued today at $625 million – boldly includes this tagline on their website: “Through your purchases, TOMS helps provide shoes, sight, water, safe birth, and bullying prevention services to people in need.” This certainly makes buying canvas shoes feel good. Their loyal customer base is a good example of how a purposeful brand can be a winning business.

Enhance Employee Engagement

Employees today want it all. In addition to traditional benefits, like health insurance and financial compensation, 64% of employees say opportunities within their companies to support causes or issues they care about are just as important[3]. In fact, the highly sought after millennial workforce are 70% more likely to be loyal to a company that provides the space for them to make a social impact.

Instead of relying on top executives and upper management to make philanthropic decisions as part of a traditional corporate giving program, consider including all employees or a representative group from several departments and instantly add value to the process. Providing an opportunity for employees to express the causes and organizations they care about creates a shared experience and could even boost morale and retention.

Use Philanthropy to Inspire Your People

A number of companies are already incorporating socially responsible practices into their business models, however; 70% of Americans find companies’ communication about their social responsibility efforts confusing[4]. Developing a strategy and communicating your philanthropic efforts to your customers and employees is key.

If you are looking for a way to streamline your efforts, consider partnering with the Cleveland Foundation. Our team of attorneys, accountants, development professionals, and community experts has the know-how to create and implement a customized philanthropic strategy for your business. 

Whether you are just getting started or have a desire to convert your internally administered corporate giving program, we stand ready to help your socially conscious business thrive.

[1] Cone Communications 2013 Social Impact Study

[2] 2014 Nielsen Survey on Corporate Social Responsibility

[3] Cone Communications 2016 Employee Engagement Study

[4] Cone Communications 2013 Social Impact Study

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