How Small Nonprofits Can Leverage Corporate Philanthropy
As the uncertainty of the pandemic continues, small nonprofits are worried about how the economic climate will affect their organization. Grants are an important source of revenue, however those funding organizations could also be struggling.
If the pandemic has taught us anything, it’s that we need to get creative. Nonprofits should be maximizing their fundraising efforts by using every resource they have. Specifically for smaller nonprofits at critical stages of growth, corporate philanthropy can be helpful in providing stability through difficult circumstances. Let’s face it — all businesses need visibility right now, and corporate social responsibility is a great way for companies to strengthen their brand. It’s a win-win!
Below we’ll discuss four ways in which you can leverage corporate philanthropy and strengthen your financial foundation.
- Promote matching gift programs. This is a great way to increase fundraising revenue, because it is easy for both the funder and their employer. A company will have preset guidelines for matching and then, when their employees donate to charities, the employer matches the program’s pledged amount. Both sides reap the benefits, because the nonprofit receives funds, the funder knows they are making an impact, and the company improves their image. The process of matching gift programs is fairly simple, with just a few easy steps. To start, a company search tool should be embedded on your website. Users will check their eligibility, funders submit their gift online, and the employees request a match. The employer can then confirm the employees donation and make their own.
- Utilize volunteer grants. These grants are similar to matching gift programs in that the process is relatively the same. The difference is that instead of a donation being matched, the organization is paid for a volunteer’s time. Whether you already have a solid set of supporters or are looking to attract new volunteers, both are great ways to generate revenue. While we’d all love for volunteer work to happen in person, nonprofits have to adapt to a socially distant world. Consider asking volunteers to become social media ambassadors, guest write on your blog, etc. For existing volunteers, make sure to remind them how much you appreciate them, and encourage them to take advantage of volunteer grant programs offered by their employers. For new volunteers, emphasize the value of these programs (in terms of labor and grant funding), and the fact that their time is valued.
- Find corporate sponsorships. Strengthening partnerships with local businesses and various corporations is another great way to gain funding from corporate philanthropy. A sponsorship program can serve as a pivot from a special event or another revenue generating campaign.This requires the nonprofit to build out a corporate sponsorship program and select which sponsor(s) they’d like to use. Before reaching out, make sure the businesses have similar missions. Explain what your organization has to offer, and then work towards an agreement. And it doesn’t stop here! This should be an ongoing relationship that is nurtured, especially during these uncertain times.
- Have a community day. While the pandemic has limited us in this aspect, it can still be done with the correct social distancing procedures in place. Businesses can encourage their employees to participate collectively, whether it’s at a soup kitchen or painting a shed. This creates a feeling of camaraderie that will keep people coming back.
How is your nonprofit maximizing it’s corporate philanthropy efforts? Leave us a comment below!
At RBW Strategy, we can help you leverage other key partners’ strengths on specific engagements and can provide this support as part of our work with your organization. Learn about corporate sponsorship packages, communications support and more, and don’t hesitate to contact us today.