Want to help your business? Get out there and help others! While volunteering in your community offers you the opportunity for personal growth, it’s a great way to grow your profits as well. Below are a just a few of the many benefits your business will receive simply by giving back.
FREE PUBLICITY – In an altruistic sense, volunteering your time to a charitable program allows you to get the word out about a worthwhile cause. In a business sense, it also allows you to spread the word about, well … your business. Aligning yourself with a charity is a great way to create goodwill (not to mention cross-promotion) for your products/services. Remember that when you volunteer, you’re not just doing things “for free” you’re getting free publicity for your business.
INCREASED CUSTOMER LOYALTY – Consumers want to do business with entrepreneurs who truly care about the communities they serve. When those consumers see you getting involved in local charitable causes, they’ll be more inclined to frequent your business in the future.
NETWORKING OPPORTUNITIES – The boards of charities tend to be filled with powerful people from within your business community. By volunteering your time to those charities you gain access to a group of people who are uniquely positioned to help you grow your business.
TAX DEDUCTIONS – As long as you’re working with an organization that is officially recognized by the IRS, you should be able to write off many of the expenses you incur when volunteering. To maximize your charity related tax deductions, be sure to consult a tax specialist.
BRAND BUILDING – As a small business owner, your reputation in the community is everything. By engaging in volunteer work, you enhance that reputation by showing your customers, and potential customers, that you care about things beyond your bottom line. That’s good for your brand going forward.
EMPLOYEE GROWTH – Now more than ever, employees want to work for businesses they can feel good about. By offering volunteering opportunities, you’ll be able to attract better candidates. Furthermore, when you involve your employees in local causes, they’ll develop a closer connection to the community they work in, and by extension, to your customers. Long story short – volunteering can help you attract better employees, boost employee morale and improve your customer service.
PERSONAL GROWTH – Even given all the aforementioned benefits of volunteering, the most important still is simply the feeling you get from giving back. Become an advocate for a local cause and you’ll find that you aren’t just bettering your community and your business … you’re bettering yourself as well.
Ready to make a difference instead of just making a living? Your local chamber of commerce can probably point you in the right direction. Good luck!