Try to do good in this world not out of fear of hell or reward of heaven but because it feels better not to be a jackass.
No doubt we all agree that the world needs more kindness right now. And every one of us should do our part to help. It’s a lot easier to do so when we acknowledge that even the simplest acts of humanity do matter. A compliment can make someone’s day and even reverberate into more compliments or even higher productivity. And donating even a dollar, can ripple in positive ways that will instill a spirit of generosity in strangers you may never meet.
I believe we should activate ways to unveil generosity at both the individual and the corporate level that are contagious. From a business standpoint, the statistics connected to purposeful and meaningful brands are worthy of changing your strategic plan.
- Meaningful brands outperformed the stock market by 206% over the past 10 years.
- Meaningfulness in brand marketing can increase wallet share by up to 9x.
- 75% of consumers expect brands to make more of a contribution to our wellbeing and quality of life, yet only 40% believe brands are doing so.
As our friend, Stan Phelps, says: “PURPOSE” should be the 5th “P” of marketing.
Alternatively, I think it is important to come to grips with the notion that it’s ok if ROI is divorced from giving back initiatives. Giving back for the sake of giving is what is most pure.
And while I am a true believer, supporter and activator of cause-marketing, I want to share Brand Fuel’s latest venture into the world of experience-marketing, which was devoid of trying to gain market share. [We even told our team that it was ok if we did not get a return.]
It’s called, “The Kindness Container Experience.”
Essentially, we branded a cash-blowing machine as our gateway for giving. We set the cash blowing Kindness Container up at The High Five Marketing Conference where we attracted attendees to an experience that allowed them to grab as much cash as they could, and then – distribute the cash in a way that they deemed “generous.” There were no rules or timelines. No conversations around selling our products and services. No data capture. No quid pro quo.
The goal? Brand Fuel to operate as a force for good.
And while we are not in the business of donating $2500 every day, we did feature great promotional products near the container for those who asked. We also provided branded giveaways to reinforce who we are and what we do:
- “Kindness Sprinkler” buttons for participants who let us mess up their hairdos in the cash blowing machine.
- Post-it Notes on every dollar bill with messaging that reminded participants to honor the cash in a selfless manner – by sprinkling kindness in the community.
- “Kindness Container” branded Mason jar mugs, that also serve as a giveaway change banks. We stuffed them with inspiring quotes and community calls-to-action.
The buttons, Post-its and Mason jars will hopefully serve as a lasting physical connection to the uplifting experience participants had.
And while the Kindness Container event experience was incredibly engaging and our staff had a blast, we measure success in the stories that we heard about how the money was “sprinkled.”
- The lady who was at the front of the Chick-fil-A line who turned around to yell, “I’m buying everyone in my line lunch today – just because!” I was told this was met with cheers from everyone, including those not in her line.
- A waitress who received an extra $7 tip.
- A street busker’s guitar case that was filled with dollar bills with “pay it forward” Post-it Notes.
- The gentleman who said the $22 he got out of the machine was burning a hole in his pocket and that he hoped he would run into someone who needed the money. Moments after which, a homeless man approached him asking for help. It turned out to be both of their lucky days. You can watch his story here.
Watch his video story: https://www.brandfuel.com/experiences/kindness-container/
The feel-good personal anecdotes we heard go on and on. All of this is to say that nonprofits do not have a monopoly on meaning or community-giving. One of the greatest untapped sources of motivation is a sense of service to others. And companies, not just individuals and nonprofits, have the responsibility and privilege to get in the driver’s seat in this corporate social responsibility regard.
So, I challenge you to share this with your staff and devise a giving strategy connected to your business. Inspire and empower your staff to come up with a plan. And then share it with the world. Because the world needs your kindness right now.
Danny Rosin is a tireless connector, community leader and entrepreneur. He is Co-President of Brand Fuel a free-spirited, full-service merchandising agency. He is also the active Co-Founder of Band Together, a volunteer-driven nonprofit that uses live music as a platform for social change that has donated $8.5 million to community causes. Danny proudly serves on the boards of PPAI, The American Marketing Association, Triangle Chapter and PromoKitchen.