I've been straddling the worlds of business and philanthropy. First as a corporate executive and now as a consultant helping companies leverage social impact.This has made me a believer that business engagement is the key to solving social problems in ways that are sustainable, scalable and replicable.
One reason checkout charity is so common is because it's easy and because companies can end up looking generous -- sometimes without even investing a dime of their own money. So, I get the appeal. But does it really drive your brand if the shopper is turned off or simply confused as to why this store is working with this charity?
The increasing difficulty in differentiating a brand based on price, quality or convenience has actually created a new opportunity -- or dare I say a new imperative -- for all marketers to seek out new ways to make their products matter. One of the most promising new sets of benefits are intrinsic social benefits
Today's funders and many other social-sector stakeholders represent a new generation of "value-seekers." Rather than investing in social programs that meet some arbitrary effectiveness threshold or proffer anecdotal success stories, they want to see real changes in the outcomes they care most about, and at a reasonable cost.