How Working With Nonprofits Can Help Your Business

by Shane Power, President of Watertree Health 

Today’s more socially-conscious consumers are putting pressure on brands and corporations, holding them accountable for their environmental impact and stance on social issues. In fact, a 2018 report found that 64% of consumers are prepared to advocate, boycott, or avoid a brand depending on its social or political positioning.

So how can you demonstrate your company is socially responsible? One way to do this is by partnering with a nonprofit aligned with your brand values. Nonprofits are the boots-on-the-ground groups addressing important issues across the nation. Many rely on corporate sponsorships to meet their fundraising goals, and these alliances give both parties the opportunity to expand their missions and effect greater change.

At Watertree Health®, our nonprofit partnerships have allowed us to further improve the health of communities beyond helping people afford their prescriptions. For example, our donations have contributed to tackling food insecurity, finding loving homes for mistreated animal victims, and improving medical outcomes for critically ill children. Through these relationships, we’ve also built a stronger internal community of passionate employee advocates. Here are a few reasons why a business might consider a strategic nonprofit partnership.

Grow Revenues

According to Nonprofit Source, companies led by purpose reported a 9.85% annual growth over 5 years. Being more socially responsible helps attract customers with similar values, strengthening their emotional connection and loyalty to your brand–88% of consumers say they are more loyal to companies who support social and environmental initiatives. It’s important to align with a nonprofit partner related to your business category so stakeholders are able to make an immediate connection.

Improve Employee Engagement

It’s important that companies measure success beyond profit margins, like employee engagement and retention. 88% of millennial employees (ages 23-38) find their jobs more fulfilling when given the opportunity to make a positive impact on society and the environment. Nonprofit partnerships are the perfect opportunity to introduce volunteer days, employer-matched contributions, and other programs that engage employees and increase loyalty. It has been found that people who participated in corporate giving programs had 75% longer tenures with their companies.

Increase Brand-Building and Awareness

When a business unites with a nonprofit that has a strong community presence, both organizations may be publicized for their alliance, and therefore experience shared growth. Also, launching a strategic cause-marketing campaign can both raise awareness for the cause and benefit the corporation with media attention, increased sales, or other goals set prior to the campaign. The partnership may also introduce you to other corporate sponsors of the nonprofit, increasing your opportunity to do business.

Nonprofit partnerships can help strengthen a company’s sense of purpose, increase employee engagement and retention, and attract today’s socially-conscious customers. If you’re considering introducing this idea to the decision-makers at your company, do your research on what organizations could benefit from what you have to offer. (Take note that some larger, national nonprofits may require an initial sponsorship fee for using their name brand, so that may play a role when narrowing down your list.) The goal is a long-lasting partnership that has meaningful impact on both organizations.