As a business owner, you may think your job is only to provide a product or service to your customers. While keeping customers satisfied is crucial for business success, the most profitable and sustainable businesses actually go much deeper to keep customers happy. They also look for ways to give back to their communities.
Giving back is a great way for business professionals to dig some deeper roots with their community. As a way to become involve, spread awareness and create lasting relationships, getting involved in community service can be beneficial in many ways.
Not only can it make you more attractive to employees and business partners, it can also help you attract the attention of new audience members.
Let’s take a look at a few of the major reasons why you should be giving back as a business and some examples of companies who are getting involved.
1. Help Your Community Grow
A strong community can create a strong business. When the members of your audience are successful, able to stand on their own two feet and remember that you helped them get there, they’re likely to remember you for years and years to come.
Helping your community grow and develop means you can create lifelong customers.
Target is an excellent example of a company that has helped their community develop into stronger individuals. Through donating $1 billion to education Target has helped children all over the world create a better life for themselves.
While those kids may not be shopping now, they’re likely to remember how Target helped them get through school and want to return the favor when the time comes to shop on their own.
2. Break the Greedy Business Owner Stereotype
When many people think of business owners, they imagine someone only looking to make money. While this may not be an accurate representation of who you are as a professional, breaking out of that stereotype and showing you want to be a business owner to help others can actually bring you more business.
Eye Buy Direct is a great example of a company that goes out of its way to help the less fortunate. Not only do they eliminate retail costs to make eyeglasses more cost-friendly to traditional customers, they also donate time, products and resources to organizations all over the world. They’ve made it their mission to help as many people get access to affordable eyeglasses as possible.
3. Get Your Employees Involved
Employees who feel satisfied with their job and company are higher performers and more likely to stay in the position long-term.
Getting your employees out of the office and involved in some community service can help them feel better about themselves and feel more connected with the company. It can also give them an opportunity to bond with other co-workers or their managers in a less formal space.
Xerox provides community service opportunities to employees periodically throughout the year. By allowing them to pick and choose projects that they may be interested in, employees are able to get involved with things they genuinely care about. This improves their morale, encouraging them to maintain a better work-life balance.
4. Create Strong Customer Relationships
In order to develop a strong base of loyal customers, you need to connect with them on a deeper level than just selling products or services.
You need to create a bond that fosters a strong relationship with your customers. One of the best ways to do that is to show that you care about something your customers also care about, such as a particular charity or cause.
Many companies choose to go green to not only contribute to saving the health of the world, but to also attract the attention of customers interested in helping the Earth however they can.
Coyuchi, a linen company, is one example of a company who has created a sustainability program to help their customers recycle products. Through their Coyuchi for Life program, customers can mail back old linens to the company, who will then refresh them to donate.
There are many different ways a company can give back to their customers and their community. From donating money, to giving their time, getting involved as a business can not only improve your employee’s happiness with your company but improve the image your business puts out into your community.
When looking for ways to get involved, consider what ideas might align with your business mission or vision. Think about what you’d like to help accomplish and what you may be capable of doing.
Talk with your employees, your target audience, and your community to see what is needed and where you can help. When you put the needs of your community over your own business needs, you can see the many benefits from corporate responsibility.
How do you plan on giving back as a Business/Entrepreneur?