Millennials are so focused on engaging with brands doing good in the world that if you’re not talking about the good your brand is doing in the world, millennials will buy from your competitor who IS talking about the meaningful work they’re doing.

-Amy Kauffman

How To Talk About Your Corporate Charitable Giving In A Way That’s Not Braggadocios And IS Brand Appropriate

By Amy Kauffman

I have engaged in countless conversations with companies wondering if they should/should not share their charitable giving impact stories. What follows is typically the reason for their hesitation. The biggest reason I’ve heard for not sharing these amazing stories is for fear of sounding braggadocios.

This is a healthy fear. Words are powerful and they can bring people closer to our brand or drive them away.

I’m going to assume we all want to draw people closer to our brand.

3 Reasons You Should Talk About Your Charitable Giving Stories and “Accomplishments”
  1. People love great stories. We are inundated with heavy news daily from the media and are desperately hoping that there’s something lovely still going on in the world. When we read a beautiful and touching story in the midst of our day it rejuvenates the hope we have inside. If we have the stories that will make people’s lives more enjoyable, shouldn’t we share them?
  2. Being humble and quiet might cost you. Especially with the millennials entering the market by storm. Millennials are so focused on engaging with brands doing good in the world that if you’re not talking about the good your brand is doing in the world, millennials will buy from your competitor who IS talking about the meaningful work they’re doing.
  3. Goodwill stories reveal the true nature of your brand. When we share stories about our engagement with community organizations or individuals it helps the market see that we’re not just a machine producing products and services, but rather that we are a living breathing brand held together by people with souls and brains just like them. It allows people to connect with our brand in a very personal way.

After considering these three points, you’re probably more convinced than ever about sharing amazing stories around the charitable giving work you’re doing in the world, but how?

How can you share these amazing stories and accomplishments without sounding like you’re bragging?

6 Ways to Share Your Brand’s Accomplishments Without Bragging

Here are 6 ways you can share your most interesting charitable stories without sounding like you’re bragging:

1. Express Gratitude

Share a story of your charitable giving efforts and their impact and couch it in gratefulness. Simple as that. Start with appreciation, share the story of your work and what was accomplished and end with another statement of appreciation.

Here’s how that looks:

  • We had the privilege of sponsoring __________ last week.
  • We were grateful to partner with such a great community organization and provide manpower to their already potent team. Share appreciation for being part of the work, working with great people, having willing volunteers from the company with great attitudes show up to do hard work etc. This automatically seems like you’re sharing a story on behalf of more than just your brand. You’re telling the story as an appreciative partner in the work you were invited to join.
2. Express A Sense Of Wonder

In the case of sharing of sharing a huge accomplishment by your charitable giving efforts, pretend you are hearing the story yourself for the first time. What would you say in response? “Wow!” “I can’t believe so much was accomplished!” Here’s how that looks:

  • We were able to donate $$___, which was twice our initial goal. Our team was so responsive to the needs. We are still in shock ourselves!
  • We had no idea the outcome would be this amazing! Only use a sense of wonder if it’s genuine, but it can be a strong statement of humility and relatability.
3. Use Humor

Humor is a great way to share an amazing story without being perceived as braggadocios. People love humor! Here’s how that looks:

  • We supplied XYZ Non-profit with 10 workers for two days to accomplish the painting of the entire [nonprofit] facility. If we were smart we would have sent 20 employees over and tackled it in one day, but we didn’t catch on quick enough!
  • We were excited to support the [nonprofit] 5k race over the weekend! We’d like to say that our staff are shining running studs. Not so much. Good thing our money supported the work instead!!
4. Keep It Brief

Keep a running list of happy charitable impact stories that are bite-sized. Little sound bites and social media posts that you can use at random without coming off as overly polished with a huge strategic agenda. It’s relatable. That’s how people post about their own life… Little sound bites about goings on. Mirror that concept with your brand’s goodwill stories. Here’s how that looks:

  • 6 of our employees volunteered Friday with our favorite local animal shelter, [Shelter name]! We may or may not have a few new pet owners too. 😉
  • At a team meeting the other day, we decided to support the most recent hurricane victims with XYZ. Our deepest care goes out to you!
5. Allow It To Be Personal

It’s great to tell stories from your corporate brand, but sneak in personally written employee stories now and then. Let an employee carry your brand through a story. People want to know the people who work for your brand and this is a great way for that to happen. Your employees can share first person accounts of their volunteer experiences with so much more passion! Here’s how that looks:

  • Hi, this is Jane, from [Brand]. I hijacked our social media today because I had an amazing experience last week I want to share…..Jane shares story of how your brand’s giving impacted her – whether it was volunteering at an event, being an event sponsor, dropping off a donation on site to a nonprofit etc.

Brands are ultimately made of people. Let them shine through the corporate face.

6. Get A Talking Partner

Some of the best PR can come from a complimentary peer brand who spotted you doing great work in the community. You can do the same for them. Instead of bragging about your own charitable giving work, you boast about another brand’s work. And they brag about yours. Third party bragging is totally acceptable and relatable.

Here’s how that looks:

● Make an arrangement with another brand sponsoring the same event that you’re going to talk up the other brand on social media…and then you can post it on your social media with a note that says, “we’re blushing at what [partner brand] says about us!”

I hope the reasons, tactics and examples given were enough to inspire you to create your own versions of ways to talk about your charitable giving. We need your stories in the world! We want to love your brand even more. Please tell us why we should through the stories of your amazing charitable giving work!

Amy Kauffman

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