By: Amy Bretherton
Tis the season… for holiday fundraising campaigns. Nonprofits and their corporate partners come together to tap into the generosity of holiday shoppers by launching creative cause campaigns. They extend the reach of these campaigns by using digital and social media to connect with holiday shoppers who want the opportunity to do good while making their lists and checking them twice. This most wonderful time of year to give back features matching gifts, holiday themed products, employee engagement, and activations with local impact, all of which you should consider for your holiday fundraising campaign. Be sure to approach corporate partners with ideas tailored to their brand, keeping both their internal and external audiences in mind, and let them know exactly how their donations will be used and the overall impact of their generosity.
In the past few years we have seen the Salvation Army’s Red Kettle go mobile, while Macy’s Believe campaign benefiting Make-A-Wish now includes an online interactive snowman to help write letters to Santa. REI is still calling on Americans to reconnect with nature, but has added a research partnership with the University of Washington this year to help make the case for spending more time outdoors.
These holiday fundraising campaigns feature innovative ways nonprofits and their corporate partners engage customers and employees. Many have been built on past successes with added new twists:
Coca-Cola Shines Spotlight on ‘Unsung Heroes’ of the Holidays
Last year Coca-Cola partnered with Children’s Miracle Network (CMN Hospitals) shining a spotlight on “unsung heroes” – the special people who put in extra effort to make the holidays more special for everyone around them. Coca-Cola supported CMN Hospitals – and invited fans to do the same – through purchases of specially wrapped Coca-Cola holiday bottles on ShareaCoke.com. For every bottle sold through Dec. 31, Coca-Cola donated $1 to CMN Hospitals.
Finish Line Spreads Unstoppable Joy
Since 2012 Finish Line Youth Foundation has conducted an in-store holiday fundraising campaign for Special Olympics. Over 560 Finish Line stores across the United States participated last year. Customers were asked to make donations at check-out to help benefit Special Olympics. In addition to in-store donations, shoppers also made online donations and rounded up online purchases. Finish Line added blogger outreach, a celebrity ambassador, and an internal contest for store managers to increase employee participation. The retailer also hosted shoe giveaways, special events, and coaching for Special Olympic athletes during the campaign.
Macy’s Believe Campaign
This letter writing campaign is one of our favorites and is still going strong in its 11th year. For every letter to Santa dropped off in the big red letterbox at your local Macy’s store or sent online, Macy’s will donate $1 to Make-A-Wish, up to $ 1 million. The interactive snowman, holiday music, stationery and stickers make it fun and easy for believers of all ages to write to Santa online. Or enjoy a bit of nostalgia, print the letter and drop it in the red mailbox at your Macy’s store.
REI will once again pull the shutters on Black Friday in 2018, marking the fourth year of the retailer’s #OptOutside program. REI will close all 153 of its locations and process no online payments, encouraging more than 12,000 employees and customers to enjoy the day by spending time outdoors. RSVP online for REI and 52 Hike Challenge 2018 #OptOutsideEvents. This year REI is pledging $1 million to help launch a new research initiative at the University of Washington called “Nature for Health” which will study the link between health and the amount of time spent outdoors.
Mobile Red Kettle Fundraising for the Salvation Army
Red kettles are a staple of holiday fundraising, and crowdfunding is digitizing the movement to create a world filled with generosity. Community partners and volunteers can join an army of fundraisers raising donations over the holidays to help do the most good in local communities across the country. Mobile red kettle fundraising pages are easily shared with friends and family to amplify donations and awareness using social media, email and text messaging. Fundraisers can set up and customize their page in seconds for easy access and promotion on any device—PC, mobile, or tablet.
Subaru Share the Love Event
Subaru wants to be more than a car company, they want to make the world a better place. The annual Share the Love Event is returning in 2018 for the 11th year from November 15, 2018 to January 2, 2019. Subaru will donate $250 for every new Subaru vehicle purchased or leased at more than 628 participating Subaru retailers nationwide to the customer’s choice of the following national charities: The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, Make-A-Wish, Meals on Wheels America and National Park Foundation. Once again, Subaru retailers will have the opportunity to add a local hometown charity for their customers to support. This also marks the third consecutive year there will be no cap placed on the total donation.