The simple question: Want to Support a Great Cause? is a powerful set of keywords in your marketing and spiritual arsenals.
“When our business is focused on giving and supporting causes, then we get all of the Spiritual blessings, and we get some pretty darn good business ROI as well. It’s a win win all the way around.”
Asking questions works on Social Media. For instance, according to research, Tweets prefaced by a question have a 42 percent “Open” rate ~ certainly a much higher conversion rate than .01 percent click through banner advertising rates. And 42 percent trumps eMail open rates of 1 percent as well. (Don’t be fooled by eMail marketing sales pitches that eMails have any higher open rate than 1 percent. Unless your audience has cult like loyalty)
There is a Spiritual component to giving, and supporting Causes: We grow Spiritually and we focus on others instead of ourselves; our lives take on a higher purpose. We Plant and Sow. Meaning we are always planting – not looking to the outcome, but out of generosity and goodness we give.
2014 will see online marketers shift from “brand building” to conversion rates, open rates, and developing digital as well as IRL (In Real Life) response. FOLLOW THE MONEY. If we are seeing major digital marketing firms shift to response, conversions and real results, then we should be doing the same. Nadia Cameron (CMO) wrote recently of this shift in her article: Digital marketing in 2014: Where marketers are placing their channel bets This would seem to be obvious to any business owner, that a Sales Driven marketing strategy will prevail in the end, not just creation of Social Media Accounts, but to conversion through forms, Self Liquidating Offers, and Calls To Action. The best digital campaigns are actually hybrids. They involve real human response, almost always phone and sales time, and move the end user from digital response to an in house human marketing team member’s control. Without human interaction, conversions will always be low. Causes give us additional human contact.
How do we incorporate Causes in our business strategy? And where is the line drawn between a great business strategy and necessary component of Planting and Sowing to improve the lot of others? Great Topic, for large and small companies alike. With an almost mercenary approach to giving, Phillip Haid, Founder of Public writes:
“Imagine if Bell – rather than “doing charity” for mental health – embraced the issue as a key differentiator in marketing efforts throughout the year.” In his discussion of this topic on Marketing Mag Canada.
Whoa Phillip! Hold on a minute. Is he stating that we should promote Causes in order to make money? Isn’t giving and supporting a Cause supposed to be a method for Spiritual Growth? Doesn’t this mean we are doing this for marketing reasons and not idealism?
I think we all need to examine that with our own conscience ~ this must be answered through the lenses of morals and we must find balance.
There are some specific scientific conclusions to be drawn from supporting Causes that will effect the bottom line ROI for any company.
Events: Attendance at events which support causes will tend to have an 8 percent higher turn out
Millenials: The generation which has come of age with Galaxies, iPhones and living in their parents basements ~ they tend to have an idealistic approach which focuses on giving back to the world. And many entrepreneurs are focused on “Social Change” which can be seen by attending meet ups and tech groups.
Introverted Personality Profiles: We tend to think Introverts want to be converted to extroverts. Extroverts mistakenly plod introverts, thinking that they’ll come out of their shell and do a Tom Cruise on the Oprah Show thing. NO! Introverts enjoy their geeky nerdiness, and embrace it. We can reach them through a Cause. Or at least we have a better shot.
Networking: Generally, I have found that attending a Cause that I have promoted yields excellent connections. Gratefully organizers and coordinators bound across the room, pump my hands, hug me, and are grateful for the traffic I drive to their events. I have met millionaires, Congresspeople, and new clients at these events. I didn’t go for that reason, it’s just how my Higher Power worked it all out.
Corporate Sponsorship: One of my favorite questions is “What Causes do you promote?” Followed quickly by the lecture that we double or triple the size of our army when we work with Causes. Corporations and Businesses have a purpose and reason for contacting local TV Stations and issuing press releases when they announce they are supporting Causes. Much good will and free publicity can be achieved by identifying and coordinating Causes and Sponsors. As a matter of fact, the publicity far outweighs the actual dollar amounts by hundreds of percentage points.
Morale: Cause support skyrockets employee morale. That grumpy technician in the basement, who growls at every turn, now takes on a completely different personality, when seen on a Saturday morning painting an elderly person’s home. Nobody knew this other side of Grumpy. What a delightful result!
Resistance Reduction: Many CFO’s will just write a check to get us out of their office. They don’t want to participate, they don’t want to hear about employee morale. They just want to know the fastest way to get you out of their office. This is their entire participation toward Spiritual Growth ~ writing a check.
Emotional Triggers and CTAs: Causes provide bountiful marketing opportunities and testing grounds for emotional triggers, compelling content, keyword research, Call To Action Pages, sign ups, and direct donation landers. Let’s face it: “Donate Now” is a lower hurdle than “Buy Now”
Please. Do not walk away from this article thinking that I am saying you should find a Cause to support so that you can increase your cash flow, and turnaround the tarnished image of your brand like BP Oil has done. That is NOT the soundbite I want you to take.
Personally, giving has changed my life. When my sister passed away from brain cancer, and I was suffering from insomnia and Lord knows what else, it was my life of giving and purpose that sustained me. When we Plant and Sow, our lives indeed are focused outward on others, instead of our self imposed misery. Am I a busy body? Do I let anyone know? Absolutely not. I even tell people: “DO NOT let anyone know I have given and donated. I want this to be anonymous. I am not doing this for me, I am doing it for you”
I’ve seen Causes meet their goals through my brand support. I’ve created a mini viral system of Plant and Sow by encouraging Cause Support and training to the Corporate Sponsor connection. We’ve devoted resources, labor hours and entire Campaigns where it would seem there was no measurable result, and nobody said “ThankYou” … Which is the point. We are not doing it for thanks, we are doing it to make giving our way of life.
When we focus on Causes and giving, our sacrifice is our own, it’s personal, and it’s meant to be. When our business is focused on giving and supporting causes, then we get all of the Spiritual blessings, and we get some pretty darn good business ROI as well. It’s a win win all the way around.
Lon is Founder/Editor of Social N Worldwide, Inc. with websites and Social Profiles in 65 U.S. Cities. Social N burrows into micro niche markets and micro local markets. Through the use of social data sciences, his team of marketers drives sales not excuses; drives results not reports. A lifetime of Sales, Marketing, Publishing and Advertising allows Social N and PronetworkBuild to see measurable sales for clients. No other SEO or Digital Firm on the Planet has more connections (3 Million) than PronetworkBuild. None. Plant and Sow.