We’re down to the final week of this 941 tax resolution marketing challenge. We’ve covered a lot of ground over the past three weeks, and you’ve laid the foundation for ongoing marketing campaigns that you may otherwise never have considered.
I’m sure that, by now, you’ve noticed that marketing isn’t always sexy or fun. Some marketing tasks, especially the ones that require manual labor or spending a lot of time on the phone, aren’t necessarily fun, depending upon your personality type. But, that’s the nature of being in business for yourself.
But today, I want to focus on something that might be a bit more fun. Or, at the very least, a marketing task that will give you warm fuzzies.
Most of us have causes, organizations, or events that we care about. I have several causes that I support regularly, including animal shelters, scholarship funds, and figure skating. These are very disparate causes, but each of them provides unique marketing opportunities if I were inclined to take advantage of them.
What cause or organization are you most passionate about?
Most people have an automatic answer to that question. What was the first thing that popped into your head?
That’s what we’re going to focus on today.
With your cause or organization in mind, start asking some questions and doing some online reasearch:
- Does this organization do fundraising mailers that I can sponsor/piggyback on?
- Are there online, print, or public display advertising/sponsorship opportunities they offer?
- Are there events, mixers, fundraisers, etc. that I can attend? Volunteer at? Exhibit? Sponsor?
- Is there some way I can get involved that will further the cause, but also allow me to “rub elbows” with my target market?
I would never recommend volunteering as treasurer of any organization (that’s always what they want us to do, but don’t, for liability reasons), but there are definitely ways that we can get involved and mix business with our interest in the cause.
I’ll give some quick examples from my own interests:
- Due to recent humane society donations, I now find myself on the regular fundraising direct mail lists for a few different puppy/kitty shelters. These organizations send fairly elaborate fundraising mailers, and the big fundraising organizations are very good marketers (keep their marketing materials, btw, many lessons can be learned). Since these mailings are going out to other above-average donors, I might start to wonder how many of those donors are business owners. I might also start to ask myself if I could directly sponsor a mailing. If I cover the cost of a mailing, can I get an insert added to the mailing that thanks my tax resolution firm for doing so? I’m sure something could be worked out.
- Scholarship funds. Hmmm. No B2B exposure there for doing 941 marketing, right? Wrong! Do any of the scholarship funds I donate to hold an annual fundraising gala? Can I rub elbows with business people there? What about a silent auction? Can I donate a $5,000 representation package to be auctioned off, thus automatically telling that small world that I do representation? Indeed!
- Figure skating (and hockey) are expensive sports. Like, really expensive sports. People that put their kids into such sports are either high income earners, or they’re working multiple jobs and exhaustive overtime to pay ice time, gear, and coaches. It’s an excellent demographic to target. I would estimate that roughly 1/4 of all figure skating parents I’ve ever met are small business owners. I already know I could put advertising up on the boards at an ice rink. That’s the obvious one. Gotta make sure it’s a short, compelling call to action, though. With a real offer. Not just a name and number. But what else is there? How about banner ads on the rink, team, or club website? Can I sponsor the figure skating club’s monthly email blast? Can I throw a small service package into the annual fundraiser? This would be something unique and different, compared to the standard assortment of used gear that kids have outgrown that is getting auctioned off.
These are just some ideas off the top of my head. What does your cause or organization of choice do that you can piggyback off of?
Give that some thought today, and then this afternoon or evening, make that phone call to the right board member or other volunteer and get the ball rolling. Not only will you be supporting the cause you care about, you’ll also be doing something different to help grow your business.
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