When it comes to a company’s image, perception is everything. Your business could be the most generous on the planet, donating and volunteering left and right, but if no one realizes it, the public would never know. Of course, doling out good deeds is not purely motivated by a desire to earn credit for them, but it’s important to show your community that you care and are actively working on their behalf. This goes double for small businesses.
Community sponsorships and partnerships not only allow you to support the people who support your business but also increase brand recognition. When you sponsor the local softball team or partner with the local library to run a summer reading program, your name will likely be included in promotional materials. If tchotchkes (free stress balls, pens, flash drives, lanyards, cups, etc. that are printed with your logo) are involved, word of your business will spread even wider. After all, who doesn’t love free stuff?
Community sponsor/partnerships also assist with word of mouth advertising, especially if you have a way of directly involving your business with the sponsored event. For example, an ice cream shop might bring samples to a local fundraiser it participates in, supporting the efforts, spreading the word about their product, and giving everyone a free tasty treat in the process.
You don’t have to throw money around to make a difference! Find local causes that align with your company’s values and promote opportunities to volunteer. Organize groups of your employees to take part at the same time and capture the moment on social media, showing your support for the cause and spreading word about the opportunity to volunteer. You can even manufacture t-shirts for your employees to wear as they work, letting everyone know where they came from. There’s no better way to give back than with your own two hands, and your community is sure to appreciate that.
The simplest way to show your community you care is through top-notch customer service! Reach out through surveys in person and online to ask customers about their experience with your business and what you can do to improve. Have a dedicated response to customer service requests (such as on your social media account(s), website, or through your phone line) and take each situation seriously. Your customers will appreciate the one-on-one attention you give them, and remember, this is one of the greatest advantages of working with a small business– unlike large corporations, you have the ability to give every customer the dedication they deserve. When that customer writes a review or speaks about your company to friends and family, they’ll be much more likely to recommend you to others– and to remember how you took the time to help them.
Need a Business Advisor?
At Lodestar Advisors, we chart a custom growth path for each of our clients because we understand each individual, each business, has their own path. Ultimately, our success is driven by your success– we want to see your business flourish. If you’re interested in working with a top-notch business advisor, give us a call at 443-280-0890 or send us a message through the online form at the bottom of our webpage. We can’t wait to start this journey with you!