We know that celebrities who give back to their communities win the hearts of millions of adoring fans—Lady Gaga, Sandra Bullock, Bill Gates, the list goes on and on. But what about brands that are giving back to local and national charities? Supporting charities is a selfless act, but if you’re a brand that does it well, you can create lifelong connections and trust.
Win the Millennials, Win Them All
Pew Research has estimated that millennials will overtake baby boomers in the overall population this year, 2019. That means, even though brands’ marketing and advertising strategies are everchanging by nature, there will be a new main audience to attend to—and what they resonate with is brands giving back.
Easier ways to give back, like the internet and social media, are the biggest reasons why millennials have hung on to charitable giving. Sites like GoFundMe offer millennials a way to directly donate to a cause with the ability the share their offering. And, according to a report by Achieve and the Case Foundation, millennials are more likely to donate when they feel inspired by the organization behind it. In this way, it seems millennials care more about supporting good causes than institutions themselves.
So why is this good news? Giving to charity is good for clarifying your and your brand’s values. And, it gives you a chance to give back to your community, something that has probably helped your business ventures. But additionally, supporting organizations alongside your company can increase consumer’s trust in your brand. As a result, consumers will keep coming back since your brand’s giving back gives them that warm-and-fuzzy feeling inside.
Trust Them, It Worked
All this isn’t speculation—just look at the hundreds of brands who have made an effort to give back while still adhering to their brand. Here are some great examples:
Pura Vida — Since 2010, Pura Vida has been handcrafting trendy, stylish bracelets and accessories for charity. This Costa Rican brand positioned themselves on giving back, helping provide jobs to over 200 artisans worldwide with each purchase. And, their own charity donates 10% of all proceeds to more than 175 charities around the world. In 2015, they sold over two million bracelets and counting.
Warby Parker — This luxury eyewear brand takes a backseat approach to giving back. Since their beginning, Warby Parker has hung their hat on making an impact—namely that everyone should have access to the eyewear they need. That’s why they partner with non-profits like VisonSpring to make sure that with every pair of glasses sold, a pair is given to someone who needs them, too. In 2018, Warby Parker was worth $1.2 billion, and had raised $215 million.
Out of Print — A brand designed with readers in mind, Out of Print committed themselves to spreading the joy of reading to everyone, even those less fortunate. Offering up shirts, tote bags, socks and accessories for the modern-day bookworm, a portion of all sales allows them to donate books and support literacy programs worldwide. To date, Out of Print products are sold in over 1,000 stores worldwide, and they’ve donated over 3 million books to communities in need.
Giving Back Is a Win-win
Charitable giving has worked for many brands. And when your brand has a connection with a certain cause, it makes raising money that much sweeter. So, SFW partnered up with JDRF as one of their corporate sponsors for their Ride to Cure benefiting type 1 diabetes (T1D) research.
Here at SFW, we’ve integrated cycling into our company culture for over 10 years. That’s why when Bike to Work Week came around, we dedicated the miles we cycled to T1D research. Over the course of seven days, we cycled 3,309 miles and raised over $8,000 for the cause with the help of our colleagues and clients. Talk about a win!
Even better, on the day ten SFW cyclists rode to our office in Raleigh, N.C. for Bike to Work Week, SFW’s website saw a 37% increase in traffic from the week previous, 36% of them being brand-new visitors. This is all thanks to media coverage and our social media and digital efforts to spread the word. In addition, the average time spent on our site increased by 60%. Overall, Bike to Work Week saw a 233% increase in sessions.
The SFW social media channels benefited from our giving back, too. In fact, the average engagement on our Facebook page increased 16% from the previous week, and our total engagements for the week increased 941%.
Thanks to those fundraising efforts, 14 cyclists from SFW will participate in the JDRF Ride to Cure Diabetes in Amelia Island, Florida, one of six rides planned for 2019. All the while, these efforts benefit JDRF’s global mission to improve lives today and tomorrow by accelerating life-changing breakthroughs to cure, prevent, and treat T1D and its complications.
“Many SFW employees know someone dealing with type 1 diabetes, so this is a cause close to our hearts,” said Ged King, CEO of SFW and avid cyclist. “Cycling is a huge part of our company culture, and we are excited to channel our passion into such a great cause.”