Please click here if you are not redirected within a few seconds. What does this song mean to you? Cause you’ve made me that much stronger. So thanks for making me a Fighter. Song Discussions is protected by U. If you like this post, subscribe via email or RSS. Scandal in-the-making, customer-pleaser, tax write-off, nonprofit cash cow or game-changer?
Which hyphenated phrase will best describe Nordstrom’s new concept store, which will donate all net profits to charity? I was interviewed recently by American Public Media’s Marketplace on the Nordstrom concept store, set to open in Soho next fall, and on the growing appeal of retail philanthropy. Nordstrom spokeswoman Pamela Lopez: The store won’t have Nordstrom’s name on it, use its shopping bags or take Nordstrom credit cards, but will function as a wholly owned subsidiary. General spirit of philanthropy is not enough. Be obsessively transparent with employees and consumers. Invest in the causes longterm, either by continuing to support existing Nordstrom charities and partners, or committing to a new long-term investment. Long-term partnerships help define what the company stands for, enable a greater a social impact and make it easier for a company to measure this impact. It’s not enough to just give nonprofits money. Nordstrom would do well to treat these organizations as partners, not charity recipients.
There’s much more at stake with this experiment in ultimate retail philanthropy than funds raised and a branding victory for the retailer. Treating nonprofit partners as equals entails greater cooperation, satisfaction, creativity and impact. Lead with impact, not branding or splash. If all you want is a marketing campaign to attract Gen Y women, this is absolutely the wrong strategy. A quick way to turn off consumers and taint your brand is to use customers as a pawn in a high-on-glitz-low-on-impact campaign. Be transparent and proactive in your messaging, your goals and your shortcomings. Beyond being transparent with employees about the numbers, connect them to larger mission and develop opportunities for them to own and create parts of it. Connect customers to a cause beyond the purchase. Sixty-one percent of consumers take the time to learn the details of a cause-related campaign before deciding to support it. Sell the merchandise at a standard price and build the donation into the other elements of your business model.
I’m not saying this is easy, but it’s important that you don’t charge consumers for the experience of giving or for supporting your corporate philanthropy. The cause is your partner, your friend, significant of the impact you want to have. Don’t play fast and cheap with it, by which I mean no pictures of abandoned dogs and ravaged children. Find ways to communicate the urgency of their needs with dignity. How much money was raised and who did it help? This is a terrific guide for startups whose main purpose is to donate all or even some portion of profits to charity. It is easy to see how many of these guidelines are included in the founding principles of the best of these kinds of companies, such as Newman’s Own or Give Something Back. I am planning to go back through some of the other companies that I have featured on my blog to check off how many of them have been able to meet what I think are not simply guidelines but requirements of a successful philanthropic business.
I love the idea of evaluating the companies you’ve written about against these criteria. Would love to see the results of that. I really enjoyed writing this post and hope it’s as helpful to others as you found it. I’m super interested to watch this non-Nordstrom store develop and I agree with your points. Love all these new studies to back up our initial suspicions! I did hear recently that despite the assumed success the Susan G. Komen cause-related product machine, not much real value has been realized.
cause i love you is not enough