Giving back, do it for more than just good karma!

The companies that immediately come to mind when I think of giving are Toms, Warby Parker and Kohl’s. Their generous “buy one, give one” programs and annual donations to worthy causes are well known and admirable.

But how do you give back if, instead of a billion dollar business, you barely made a profit last year? And what if you just do not have the manpower (or willing manpower!) to send your staff into the community for volunteer work? And how will this benefit your business’ bottom line?  It’s understandable, and necessary, for you to think of your bottom line when committing resources.

It’s simple. You join forces with an existing nonprofit in a way that makes sense for your business that will a) benefit the community b) bring your employees together and c) help spread the word about your own business. For a tangible example of cause marketing at its’ finest, we’ll examine how Tutoring Club of McLean’s 2nd annual book drive was a bestseller (get it?).

Tutoring Club of McLean’s Owner/Director, Michelle Scott, has a passion for reading. She fully believes that every child should have access to books, and she knows that children who read early and develop a love for books thrive. Michelle decided to team up with AHC, Inc, a local nonprofit that provides high quality affordable housing for low-and moderate-income families, to host an annual book drive at Tutoring Club. All books collected are immediately put to use in AHC’s local after-school reading programs.

>Cause marketing or cause-related marketing refers to a type of marketing involving the cooperative efforts of a for-profit business and a non-profit organization for mutual benefit. (Source: Wikepedia)

TCM1Last spring, Tutoring Club families, tutors, and community supporters donated over 600 books to the book drive. AHC was thrilled and the local media paid attention. The book drive’s success was covered by the McLean Patch – Tutoring Club of McLean Donates 600 Books to After School Programs; Inside Nova – Tutoring group provides books to AHC youth,and by the Arlington Chamber of Commerce.

600 books goes a long way with children who might not otherwise have books. Tutoring Club’s annual book drive helps promote local literacy (Michelle’s passion), partners with an already established successful nonprofit (AHC, Inc) and gives meaning to all who participate. Plus, great press (free!) that praises a business is a priceless.

Get out there, find a nonprofit and get involved. Your bottom line (and heart) will thank you.

P.S. Do you have any new or gently used children’s books lying around? Tutoring Club of McLean would happily accept them for their book drive!

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