OrangeDoor marketing & content manager Aimee Dowd gives the lowdown on how to incorporate charitable elements into your business events in a genuine and tasteful way…
Events can be lucrative in the B2B landscape as they provide an opportunity for companies to showcase their products and services, exchange knowledge, and create new partnerships. Face-to-face interaction is still one of the most effective ways to establish a rapport and build long-term relationships, while also creating opportunities to gather market intelligence, stay up to date with the latest industry trends and technologies as well as share thought leadership insights.
Events can also be an effective marketing tool as they provide a captive audience and a targeted marketing opportunity. By sponsoring or exhibiting at an event, companies can increase their visibility, generate leads, enhance their brand and drive revenue growth.
With increasing global economic instability comes heightened societal expectations for businesses to ‘give back’, making it a vital consideration when producing events. Businesses are expected to not only prioritise profits but also demonstrate their commitment to social causes. Individuals are more aware than ever of how their buying habits can impact social and environmental issues. Consumers and businesses alike want to support organisations that align with their values and take a genuine interest in giving back to their local communities or global humanitarian issues.
The simple solution? Incorporate a charitable aspect to your event. But how can you do this in a genuine and tasteful way? This blog will detail some of the best ways to incorporate ‘giving back’ in a responsible and creative way while also remaining authentic to your brand.
Keep it simple with a donation box or card payment
Make it easy for attendees to donate by providing options such as cash, credit card or mobile payments. You can also offer incentives for donating, such as a matching or even doubling the money raised at the event.
To enhance the donation box, you could create a design to fit a particular theme or event. For example, if the donation is for a sports team, make the box look like a miniature stadium. Depending on the cause, this may not be appropriate. An alternative option could be to make the donation box personal by adding stories, testimonials, or pictures of people who have been impacted by the cause or organisation. This will create an emotional connection and encourage people to donate.
Make it fun with an auction or raffle
Charity auctions and raffles can be great ways to raise funds for a charitable cause at events while also providing entertainment that attendees they can engage with.
The key to a successful auction or raffle is to secure desirable prizes. Reach out to businesses and partners for donations and always make sure the prizes are relevant to your audience.
Before you begin, make sure to establish clear rules, such as minimum bids, how the winner will be selected, and when the winners will be announced. Make sure the rules are communicated to all attendees.
Creating an engaging atmosphere is an absolute must! You should have a charismatic host who is a natural at creating a fun environment for your attendees.
You should also consider providing multiple ways for attendees to participate, such as mobile bidding or online raffle tickets to make it easy for everyone to participate and increase your reach.
Swap out swag for responsible gifting or donations
Swapping out swag for charity donations is a wonderful way to support a cause or organisation while also providing value to your audience. Here are some fun ways to gift responsibly.
Instead of providing physical swag, offer a virtual swag bag that includes discounts, digital downloads, or other virtual items, this is environmentally responsible too and reduces unnecessary waste. To access the virtual swag bag, attendees are encouraged to donate to the charity.
Set up a swag station where attendees can customise their own swag items, such as t-shirts or water bottles. To take part, attendees are encouraged to donate to your selected charity.
Alternatively, your swag bags could detail the donations that you made in place of offering gift bags. This could include donating laptops to your local schools, building wells to help third world countries or helping house refugees fleeing their war-torn countries. Make your swag bags more personal by sharing real experiences with the help of your selected charity. By doing this, you are much more likely to emotionally connect with your audience and build a lasting relationship.
Whatever charitable aspect you decide on, remember to always be respectful of your attendees and not to make them feel obligated to donate. By tastefully incorporating a donation box into your event, you can help make a positive impact on the community while also building a stronger relationship with your customers.
Remember to be authentic
When a company partners with a charity, it sends a message to customers, employees, and other stakeholders that the company is committed to making a positive impact on that issue, so make sure it aligns with your organisational values and goals. Finding an authentic link between your business and a charity is so important, so be sure to carefully consider your options so you can build a genuine working relationship and help make positive change together.
Selecting a charity that resonates with your company ethos can improve employee morale and engagement. Employees are more likely to feel proud of working for a company that supports causes they care about, which can increase their motivation and job satisfaction.
Your charity selection can have a positive impact on the community and the world at large. By supporting a charity that aligns with your values, you can help address important social and environmental issues, and make a meaningful difference in people’s lives, so choose wisely.