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How can small, local charities get more out of Christmas?

StrategySarah ThomComment

Christmas is the season of goodwill and can be a successful time of the year for charity fundraising. But how do small, local charities make the most out of Christmas? 

What is Corporate Social Responsibility and how can it benefit your business?

StrategyEmma Cottle

More than ever, organisations are becoming aware of the importance of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), and growing more confident in vocalising their own commitments that they have made to society – whether that is in the form of charity donations, changes they are making to help the environment or offering services free of charge. This has come after a shift in marketing which has evolved from product-based to consumer-based to value-based marketing.

First of all, what exactly is Corporate Social Responsibility?

It aims to ensure that companies conduct their business in a way that is ethical. This means taking account of their social, economic and environmental impact, and consideration of human rights. There has been increased pressure from employees, customers and government bodies for businesses to be more transparent about their activities and maintain acceptable standards in their business practice.

Communicating your CSR commitments improves brand trust and loyalty both internally and externally, as discovered by this study by Nielsen in 2014 – who found that 55% of global online consumers across 60 countries would be willing to pay more for products and services provided by companies that are committed to positive social and environmental impact.

There have been a couple of excellent examples of this recently. Dell have outlined their Legacy of Good Plan, which details 21 ambitious CSR goals that they intend to achieve by 2020. These include designing out waste and creating a more sustainable supply chain. By highlighting their strategy, Dell are evidencing their long term commitment to society and the environment at large – giving them an advantage over their competitors in a market that is increasingly aware of ethical credentials.

Another example of a great CSR strategy comes from L’Oreal Paris, who have partnered with Prince’s Trust to improve confidence among young people. L’Oreal Paris have evolved from their ‘Because I’m Worth It’ strapline, to ‘All Worth It’, echoing their commitment to boosting young people’s self worth. L’Oréal Paris will run confidence courses quarterly at each of the 18 Prince’s Trust centres, addressing issues such as body language, communication and employability.

These are examples from large organisations, but any commitment – however small – is valuable. Emailing receipts to cut down on paper use and raising funds for a nominated charity are a couple of easy examples of making a commitment to CSR. At McQueenie Mulholland, we have made a commitment to offer marketing support to charities and local organisations and participate in fundraising events.

If you’re struggling for inspiration on what you could do to make a difference to society, we can help. Give us a call today on 01392 423 060.

Pitching the value of your local authority grant application

StrategyRob Mulholland

McQueenie Mulholland helps charities raise funds to continue the great work they do in communities around the UK. A significant part of this income comes from grants; often from local authorities due to the support these organisations provide to the public.

This got us thinking: Are there any trends in how local authority funds are allocated to voluntary, community and social enterprises? And could these trends be helpful in informing the tactics these organisations use in the targeting grants from local authorities?

Using our local County Council (Devon), an authority committed to transparency and that publishes data related to grant distribution under the Open Government License, we analysed data on grants to the voluntary, community and social enterprise sector over 2014 to see what trends exist.

These are our key findings:

  • Most grants were between £1 and £1,000. This accounted for 431 grants - over  55% of all grants. 
  • Grants of £1 to £1000 only however account for 6% of the value of all money awarded. 
  • If we look at grants between £1 and £6,000, They represent nearly 90% of the total number of grants awarded but only account for 24% of the total value. 
  •  +£100,000 grants account for just 0.51% of the total number but makes up 27% of the total value. 
  • The data showed distribution peaks at £10,000, £15,000 and £20,000 award levels - this shows  more interest in larger projects with round numbers. 

To summarise the data: If your organisation is thinking of making a bid for a local authority grant it would be wise to aim low in the value you’re seeking (between £1 and £6,000). It was awards of this level that made up the majority of successful bids.

If your project requires more support you may want to consider aiming for a round number of £10,000, £15,000 or £20,000, as there were definite peaks in the number of grants awarded at these very specific higher levels.

Written by: Rob Mulholland
Data Analysis by: Anthoney Strowger