It’s #GivingTuesday: How Can Your Biz Help?
The Sprocket Report
Black Friday – a vacation day for many – jumpstarts the holiday shopping orgy. Cyber Monday continues the buying spree once folks are back at their desktop computers. Not-for-profit organizations look to Giving Tuesday with the hope of a share in this spending bender, but your business can give back all year long.
Giving Tuesday, created as a push-back to the commercialization of Christmas and Chanukah, has only been around since 2011, but helping less-fortunate members of the community has long been part of our human history. As extensions of ourselves, it’s only natural for our businesses to also be philanthropic.
Many of us reflect on all the reasons we have to be thankful at this time of the year, which prompts us to want to share our good fortune with others. While monetary donations are always welcome, businesses are often able to offer in-kind donations that are both logical for the company to provide as well as of great value to the recipient.
You won’t be surprised to hear that a company called “Sprocket Websites” supports several NFPs with donations of website design, maintenance and hosting services. These are skills and connections we already have and are happy to share. Since Sprocket is also well-versed in digital marketing, we often provide social media services for our chosen not-for-profits as well. And sometimes we simply man the table, run the errand or plan the event as needed!
The organizations we support mirror our personal interests, particularly in business and in the arts. In California, Jim is involved with the Greater Conejo Chamber of Commerce and Synergy Business Connections. In Illinois, Don and Kate are involved with the Naperville Area Chamber of Commerce and the Ambassadors Committee. We really appreciate the benefit of belonging to these groups and volunteer to keep them going strong.
For the same reason, Sprocket hosts the Chicago Area DNN User Group and volunteers with the DNN Summit committee. This year, Don is on the Summit convention planning team as well as serving as a speaker.
But we do have interests outside of business and we love helping them out as well. Don’s creative outlet is with Summer Place Theatre. In addition to providing web support and digital marketing, he’s the board president, produces plays and acts onstage as well. Jim’s heart is with the New West Symphony which he attends regularly. He also serves on the board, provides website and hosting services and, as chair of the Marketing Committee, advises on strategic planning. Kate assists with Summer Place, but as her interest is in writing, she serves as co-host of the Chicago Author Marketing group and manages their website and digital media marketing.
The tax advantages of business philanthropy are negligible and while we may make some business connections while volunteering, that’s not the goal. It just feels right to help and do our share. No doubt you feel the same way. We’d love to hear how you support your favorite not-for-profit – tell us in the comments below. And if your business is not currently involved with an NFP, this Giving Tuesday could be a great time to find one that fits your corporate culture.