Creative Giving to Build Business and Community

Personal Branding

Year-end is when many non-profits pound the phones to ask for donations. Given a tough economy, it becomes tough on all concerned; the prospects are embarrassed to say they can’t give and the hired tele-marketer becomes frustrated by all the no’s received. This is the traditional cycle of giving.

Recent conversations had me pondering how we, as entrepreneurs on a budget, may participate in giving through more creative approaches. Here are 10 suggestions based upon giving of the heart versus just the checkbook.

  1. Choose a favorite organization to showcase. This may come in many forms such as helping to promote an upcoming event online.
  2. Build community on social media to become a thought leader. By developing a page or group, you may initiate the conversation on any given topic. Gain strength through interactive dialogue and promoting members. As you are able, provide useful information via blogs and videos for community members.
  3. Sell an e-product online but have the proceeds go to a charity of your choice. Many people see higher prices paid when a charity is behind what they have to offer. In some cases, large sums have been raised.
  4. Donate product to benefit others. One special gentleman generously gives his financial based products away to youth groups for free.
  5. Orchestrate a drive asking colleagues to contribute product or services to benefit communities.
  6. Create your own non-profit with the idea of benefiting many. This idea will require money upfront to hire legal help to get your license in place. I know two women in the process of creating hospitals through their 501C enabling them to do fundraising on many levels.
  7. Organize a special event to benefit a group of your choice. This option would be more casual with good friends committed to making a difference.
  8. Team up with colleagues to benefit an organization. Create a symposium or series of workshops in alignment with the organization’s goals.
  9. Teach extra curricular classes at schools – the kind you wished you had when you were growing up. Donate a training at colleges for graduating students.
  10. Incorporate community service into your business plan. Volunteer your services throughout the year. For example, I speak to groups of job seekers teaching how to use sales techniques to land the job they desire.

Prior to getting started, consider which venue appeals to you most. Are you able to contribute the time, energy and possibly money required to make it well worthwhile? How do you see your reward?

You may wonder where does the business piece come into play? Consider whether you intend to create and sell further services, establish strong relationships with the organizers for future partnering, or are you simply looking to the fact you know you are doing a good deed? Recognizing your expectations upfront will lead you to the right path.

My personal experience of helping job seekers brought incredible notes of thanks for helping them land their desired job. As the economy tanked, the gratitude received led to the writing of the book, HIRED! Looking back, I recognize these communities were my test market. The secondary reward was the book became an instant best-seller.

Once on your best path, you will be in integrity with and strengthen your personal brand. In turn this enhances your branding effort, client attraction, and leads the way to a very Smooth Sale!



Elinor Stutz, CEO of Smooth Sale, LLC authored the International Best-Selling book, “Nice Girls DO Get the Sale: Relationship Building That Gets Results” and “HIRED! How to Use Sales Techniques to Sell Yourself On Interviews”. She provides corporate consultation, training, coaching, and Inspirational keynotes. Elinor may be reached at or call (800) 704-1499 today.