using video for charitable causes

“Cause marketing” is defined by Wikipedia as any type of marketing relationship for social and other charitable causes. It sometimes incorporates fundraising because it can be a win-win for a brand and a great cause.

Some of the possible benefits include improved public relations and customer relationships, and additional marketing opportunities. The very best benefits, of course, are investing in your community and simply giving something back.

Quite simply, authentic cause marketing is a good thing. Today, we bring you eight ways to leverage your online hosted videos to further your charitable impact. These ideas can be used by companies and non-profit organizations alike.

1. Testimonials

Positive customer reviews, also known as testimonials, are well-known to most of you as a way to boost business. However, they are also powerful tools when it comes to making a difference.

Ask a recipient of the good work you are doing to speak on camera about the difference your support has had in his or her life. Chances are, they will be happy to assist you. In turn, your audience will be happy to see that you are more than just a company trying to make money.

2. A “Day in the Life”

People always want to see what goes on behind-the-scenes of a business because it lets them get to know you on a more personal level. Give them what they want by following an employee, volunteer, or even recipient of the charitable cause you support.

Incorporating high levels of transparency into your cause marketing efforts is important because of the trust it engenders with your audience. This also serves to show them that you put your money where your mouth is. Importantly, they’ll know that their donated money or time will be used efficiently.

3. Education

Spread awareness by educating your audience on the charitable cause you support. If your cause has a designated day or month associated with it, such as “Earth Day” or “World AIDS Day”, use these times of the year as an opportunity to bring it up and show you care year-round.

4. Celebrity Support

You’re especially lucky if you have a renowned celeb involved with your cause. In order to leverage their star power, ask them to film a short clip sharing their thoughts on the cause. They’ll be able to generate a lot of interest online, which will help get viewers excited about supporting it.

5. Annual Event Coverage

Is there an annual event you throw, or participate in? Maybe you host a special celebration for the recipients of your chosen charitable cause. Either way, gather footage of it and share it.

People who were at the event will love reliving the day, especially if they happen to be featured in the video. Those who were not there, but support the cause, will delight in seeing the impact you have made together.

6. Sneak Peeks and Previews

Planning on holding a fundraising event that incorporates an auction? Provide a preview of the auction items interspersed with clips of the preparation process. Try to include donors sharing the reasons they support the cause and are excited for the event. This will help build anticipation among attendees. It will also provide maximum exposure when you and those other event participants share it online.

7. Showcase Your Impact

Many companies have been supporting the same cause for years and years. Usually, long before video marketing was the norm and even before social media and online marketing took off.

Showcase your support by including shots of great pictures from past charity-related events. Work your company’s history into your online video! It will serve to show your audience that you have been invested in your community in the past. This will help inspire trust in viewers because they’ll be able to see you’ve been involved for a long time.

8. Ensure Compliance with Local Law

In certain areas, co-marketing initiatives for charitable causes are heavily regulated. If fundraising is involved, it can get even more complex.

You’ll need to check local laws and regulations to ensure you’re covered from a compliance standpoint.

Additional Tips:

  1. Be authentic. Do not just pay lip-service to supporting a particular cause. Demonstrate your commitment to the community by showing the actual work you do.
  2. Make it relatable to your audience. In your videos, always aim to answer this question for them, “Why should I care?”
  3. Do not be afraid to share your story. If you have chosen to support a particular cause for personal reasons, relay that story to your audience.
  4. The cause you support might be compelling enough to draw viewers to your video. However, you can’t use that as an excuse to offer subpar video content. There are many ways to approach cause-related videos, so you should always keep your content interesting!
  5. Include sharing options so your viewers can easily post the video to their social media platforms. If it is in your budget, consider offering to donate $1.00 for every share.
  6. People want to help, and they want to see that you are about more than just making money, so just do it!

Do you regularly incorporate charitable causes into your online video presence? Be sure to leave your tips, experiences, and questions with us on Facebook and Twitter.

Written by Laci Texter

SproutVideo blog contributor. You can follow her on Twitter and Google+.

Posted June 5, 2013

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