How Charitable Partnerships Can Boost a Brand’s Profile

We’ve talked before about the importance of community impact for businesses both large and small. In any community, there are a wide array of ways to get involved and help improve that community for those living and working in it.

Forming charitable partnerships is another way to get involved and improve the community around a business. Of course, businesses can provide support in ways that individuals cannot to a nonprofit or charity. But these partnerships should always be done with tact and taste — the opposite effect can easily happen if a move is done for seemingly ulterior motives.

Finding the Right Charitable Partnership

When selecting a charitable partnership for a business, there are many things to consider. One of these factors is what charity or nonprofit to partner with. Here are some considerations for this decision:

  •     Core values and mission of the business
  •     Nonprofits that align with these core values naturally
  •     Reputation of nonprofit and of the supporting business
  •     Required budget to support a charitable partnership
  •     End goal of charitable partnership

Core values lie at the heart of a business’ purpose. These values are important. They give consumers a look at the belief and value systems of those in executive positions, and they provide a roadmap of how a business conducts itself in public dealings.

With that in mind, it’s equally important for a business to align itself with a nonprofit that also values the same ideas. The purpose and mission of the nonprofit must also make sense. For example, a leather goods company may not look the best if it were to support PETA, nor would PETA be likely to accept their partnership proposal. This is, of course, an extreme example, but it shows that a partnership should be genuine, not self-serving or just “for looks”.

Forming a Charitable Partnership

Once a business has selected a nonprofit to enter into a partnership with, it’s time to figure out exactly what that partnership is going to look like.

Not every partnership has to look the same. Remember, this has to be a beneficial arrangement for both the business and, more importantly, for the nonprofit. Whether the support is financial, in the form of volunteer help, or other services provided, it’s important to set clear expectations and guidelines for the new partnership. Contracts are helpful in this situation, to protect all parties involved.

Before jumping in, take the time to form a strategy about how a business can best assist a nonprofit. Perhaps a marketing agency can offer its services to a local animal shelter each month. Or maybe an event planning portal can donate a portion of the proceeds to local community programs in an effort to create a safer neighborhood in which to host events. Maybe a local consultant can jump on board to help plan a fundraiser for a nonprofit. The possibilities are endless!

Finding creative ways to help out is important too — it doesn’t always have to just be about writing a big check. In fact, finding other ways to get involved is often even more helpful, especially for under-staffed nonprofits.

Aligning business with a nonprofit is a smart move for many reasons, but the biggest motivator should always be the betterment of community or the helping of others. From this motivation can come a great, fulfilling partnership on both sides.

FIFA Bans Brazilian Official Accused of Bribery

Yet another big name on the international soccer scene has seen their reputation destroyed. The Associated Press is reporting that Brazilian soccer official Marco Polo del Nero has been banned for life after being accused of “bribery and corruption” by a FIFA ethics committee. According to a FIFA statement, Del Nero, who has been both a FIFA executive committee member and a Brazilian Football Confederation president, was fined about $1 million, even as the US Department of Justice handed down an indictment alleging Del Nero played a key role in a massive bribery scandal that rocked FIFA. It’s not expected that Del Nero will be extradited to the United States to face trial on the bribery and racketeering charges, but he had other serious issues to deal with at home.

After other Brazilian colleagues were arrested on similar charges in Zurich during an international FIFA meeting, Del Nero fled in order to avoid arrest. One of those colleagues, Jose Maria Marin, has already been adjudicated guilty.

Del Nero had resigned from the FIFA ruling committee, hoping to avoid further consequences. He was initially suspended by the ethics committee pending an investigation, even as a growing number of fellow officials faced convictions and now await sentencing.

The lifetime ban handed down to Del Nero came after the ethics committed completed its investigation and found credible evidence that he had engaged in “bribery and corruption” by “offering and accepting gifts and other benefits…” in conjunction with several major tournaments including the Copa America and Brazil Cup. Meanwhile, even though Del Nero would not come to the United States, several witnesses were testifying to his deeds in open court. One such witness, Brazilian sports marketing leader, Jose Hawilla, said Del Nero was one of several top soccer officials who expected bribes to allow media to cover tournaments.

Meanwhile, Marin’s attorneys had classified their client as a figurehead, putting all the blame for the bribes and other illegal activity squarely on Del Nero’s shoulders. Del Nero’s attorneys allege there is absolutely no evidence against him, and they are considering filing a challenge appeal related to the FIFA ban. Regardless of what happens from a legal standpoint, Del Nero’s reputation in both Brazil and in the international soccer community has taken a huge hit. While it may be possible for him to extricate himself from this multi-layered PR crisis, it will take time, as well as excellent messaging to walk back the sting of the investigation and the subsequent ban.

Ronn Torossian is the CEO of 5W Public Relations

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