Giving Based Marketing

For many small brick and mortar business owners, advertising and marketing can be a key factor in establishing their business in the local community. Among the many avenues for advertisement, one of the most dynamic and reciprocal is the concept of giving based marketing – that is, spreading the word about a business while simultaneously supporting the community where the business resides. Charitable giving to local non-profit organizations can be a powerful marketing tool which goes a long way to strengthen the relationship between a business and its customers through what we at thinknlocal refer to as ‘the cycle of giving’.

Let’s look at how this compares to some other marketing strategies.

Many business owners have a natural inclination to show appreciation to their customers by giving back to the community that supports and maintains the success of their establishment. The thinknlocal platform was designed to facilitate this process in a way that not only makes giving back extremely easy for businesses but does so in a way that maximizes the benefits of doing so to the recipient and the business alike. Other marketing platforms such as DoorDash, Uber Eats and Groupon which take commissions or rely on heavy discounts of products or services, can eat heavily into company margins. On top of this, businesses must still spend on advertising discounted offers only to bring in customers who really ‘belong’ to these middleman platforms who keep most of their information and loyalty. Conversely, giving-based marketing through the thinknlocal platform keeps businesses directly connected to their customers and their community without relinquishing valuable data or commissions to the platform.

When a business engages in charitable giving within a local community as part of their overall marketing strategy, the rewards go far beyond tax deductions or write-offs. It offers them opportunities to develop credibility within their community through positive media exposure and word of mouth recognition. Statistics show that 85% of consumers have a more positive image of a company who gives to charity and 90% of consumers want to know how companies are supporting charitable causes. In addition, organizations on the receiving end of fundraisers can offer many benefits to the businesses that support them. They have a vested interest in spreading the word about these businesses through printed materials, social media, and newsletters, while businesses then have the unique opportunity to engage their community at fundraising events and check presentations.

Additionally, thinknlocal fundraisers are built around a ‘shop local’ mindset and are fueled by users who spend money at these participating businesses. Schools and non-profit organizations have a motivated group of supporters who are willing to spend money to raise money so engaging them through the thinknlocal platform not only garners positive attention and PR but provides practical reasons to get people through the door. As a result, businesses gain new and repeat customers who are intent on seeing a portion of their money go to a good cause while also supporting their local economy. Small businesses generate $68 of local economic return for every $100 spent with them and this matters more than ever in a time when online retailers and services are dominating the market. This ‘cycle of giving’ from the community to the business – to schools and charities – then back into the community generates mutual benefit to all stakeholders, and once set in motion can continue in perpetuity. Aside from a better community and happy customers, giving back also has a positive effect on the company’s employees and company morale. In fact, 93% of employees who volunteer in a charitable capacity with their company said they are happy with their employer.

There aren’t many marketing opportunities which offer this type of broad organic reach for a small business while serving to benefit the local community at the same time.

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