Being officially affiliated with a cause that matters to you and your business is a great way to support the things you care about, and an important part of telling your story. This is related to, but different from, receiving certifications, in which an unbiased third party is able to evaluate your business process.
An affiliation could refer to a vegan business supporting a farm sanctuary with a portion of their proceeds, a reusable water bottle company supporting a project for cleaner oceans, or maybe a company that makes stationary who donates product to schools in rural areas. Find affiliations that share your values and develop long lasting mutually beneficial relationships to do + create even more good for all.
Contact the organization and ask how you can support them. They might be looking for donations, or your arrangement may be more creative, like providing your service or product to local members at a discount.
Show off your badges. Some organizations have strict regulations over how much you contribute to their cause before you can include their logo on your packaging. Respect their processes. Then, ask for their assets so you can display them proudly on your packaging and your website.
Reach out and personally introduce yourself to their Executive Director or Director of Marketing. Just as you are eager to share your relationship with them, they might be interested in sharing their relationship with you – especially if it gives people the opportunity to support their organization when they buy your product or service.
Follow them on social media. Share what they post (not only the stuff that involves you, but also the important cause-related posts that matter).
Be in touch, often. Continue to have conversations about what they are doing and how you can support them. An authentic affiliation shouldn’t be a one-time deal.
Market yourself to other members (respectfully). You may provide a service that they need, and they will be relieved to know that they can support someone that cares.
Look for opportunities to collaborate. Look for businesses that support the same causes as you and discover ways you can support each other.
Write a blog post (or many). Say why you’re proud of the affiliation and share it well.
Pay attention to their community. Find ways to participate in their efforts such as events, fundraisers, and petitions.
Share the good that they do. It will help raise awareness for the organization, and it will make your customers feel better knowing that by supporting you, they can help affect change too. Sharing is caring!
Being able to work alongside a cause that you care about will be one of the most rewarding things about doing what you do. Bring meaning into your company culture. Wear it proudly, and feel good knowing you’re making a difference.
This post is a resource from The Borden Workbook, our comprehensive guide to help entrepreneurs organize and grow their small businesses. The Borden Workbook is used in conjunction with consultation with Borden Communications, or as an organized guide you can used on your own to launch, develop, and nurture your small business (starting now!). We take pride in creating a clear and humble approach to good business tactics that everyone can understand and execute.