May 19th, 2010
Orange twist anyone? It’s been a while since we threw in some orange peels…we’ll work on that. Thanks for letting us know you’re missing them!
Heard anything new on channel development lately? Something creative and different? Well here’s a different approach we’ve been working on recently, developing a channel of non-profit organizations. On first blush, people raise their eyebrows and wonder how that’s going to be successful. Non-profits are looking for money, donations, they don’t have money to spend. Exactly! They also have a lot of loyal followers—a very captive audience. These people LOVE to work for their cause, and we salute them! Now we also offer them a way to create recurring donations for their charities without taking additional money out of anyone’s pocket.
One of our clients, Zees Holdings, set out to build a solid company with a social conscience. From day one, they planned to have a percentage of every sale go to helping women’s and children’s shelters, both by donating mattresses directly and by donating a percentage of their sales. We extrapolated on that concept and Zees recently announced the Mr. Zees Gives Back program. Here’s how it works. Non-profits sign up for the program, at no cost, and receive a special code identifying their organization. They promote this code in any way they want…newsletter, social media, blog, website, flyers, at events, mailings…you name it. Consumers purchase Zees products and enter this code at checkout. At the end of every quarter, the charity receives a check for a percentage of every sale that included their code.
This is a win-win for everyone! Non-profits are always in need of money to support their programs. These economic times are hitting non-profits very hard. In many cases, they face even more people in need of their services, and far fewer donations. With a program such as Mr. Zees Gives Back, people have an opportunity to support their favorite charities based on a purchase they already needed to make. Even if they are not able to make the donation they might typically make, they feel good about finding another way to offer their support.
While we haven’t gone here yet, we have some thoughts on extending this non-profit channel concept even further. The same program could be offered to businesses as a way to support their favorite charity. The business would sign up for the program, adopting their favorite charity, which they would register with the channel program. The business promotes the product in whatever way it sees fit…with employees, to its customers, in social media, website, etc. The business lets their audience know they have adopted this charity and support their efforts. They promote the code, the product is purchased, and the donation is made on behalf of the business. Influency Group would strongly encourage the business to match these donations, but that would be up to the business.
Along these same thoughts, colleges and universities are another possibility. In this case, the college would sign up for the program and get their code. Promote the code as above with their students, parents, alumni, faculty, staff, friends of the college, and so on. In this case, the donations could be designated to go to the college’s scholarship fund perhaps.
More win-win. No one is being asked to buy something they don’t need, or to try to come up with money they may not have…people are being offered the opportunity to purchase an item they need and have a percentage of that sale go to a cause they support.
Given the option to make a purchase I was already going to make where a percentage goes to charity or not, solely based on where I choose to purchase, I would choose the one that supports the charity every time!
A twist of lemon or lime with that? Neither. A twist of orange, of course!