5 Tips for Partnering with a Nonprofit

partnershipMuch like your business, nonprofit organizations look to the holidays as the optimal time to increase revenue. So, you may want to take advantage of this time to partner your pet business with a local or international nonprofit. It could help increase sales, win customer loyalty, raise brand awareness, and help a worthy cause.

But before you get started, here are 5 things to know about partnering with a nonprofit:

#1 Choose Your Charity Wisely
Before you choose your nonprofit partner, ask these questions: Are they a reputable organization? How are they viewed within the pet industry? Have they ever been involved in controversy? Are they politically biased? Do your customers have a vested interest in them?

Finding the answers requires a little research, but when it comes to affiliating your name with another, it’s well worth the time and effort. Researching a nonprofit is easy with the help of websites such as Charity Navigator, GuideStar and GrantSpace.

#2 Stay Involved
This new venture is a partnership, so stay involved in all decision making, action strategizing and event organizing.

Planning an event or sponsorship will help you be an active partner. For instance, if you own a pet store, arrange for a holiday pet photo shoot with proceeds going to the nonprofit. Or if you have a pet grooming business, sponsor a youth sporting event.

#3 Be Mission-Focused
At the onset of your partnership, determine your goals and roles. Sometimes politics and “power-plays” can get in the way of a successful campaign, so make sure you and your nonprofit partner are on the same page and keep focused on your main mission and end results.

And don’t be afraid to relinquish a little control when it comes to direct fundraising. Remember a nonprofit’s primary function is just that, so be open to their suggestions and ideas.

#4 Communicate!
Constant communication is a must when partnering with a nonprofit. Make it a point to call, email and even drop by the organization’s office from time to time. If you’re too busy, assign a staff member to be your company’s primary contact person.

#5 Publicize Your Partnership
Let your customers know that you’re affiliated with their favorite nonprofit. Not only will this help raise donations, it will help bring customers into your store, attract them to your website, or introduce them to your service or product.

One way to do this is to add the nonprofit’s logo to your marketing materials such as your website, newsletter, shipping labels, employee clothing and name badges. And make sure to have your nonprofit partner agree to recognize your brand in their marketing materials as well.

Good things can happen when you partner with a nonprofit – from benefiting your business to uniting your pet community. And if really successful, that holiday cheer can keep spreading throughout the year!