The Save the Mountain story in the last chapter is the perfect segue to one of our favorite parts of the marketing toolbox: affinity marketing that benefits both you and a worthy cause.
In our other marketing books, we demonstrate that working with a charity allows you to take advantage of free media publicity and many other marketing opportunities that are denied to strictly-for-profit enterprises. Newspapers promote your event, radio stations have you on the air to talk about it, and store owners let you put posters in their windows. Bloggers and Twitterers spread your message in cyberspace; libraries make space for your flier on their bulletin boards. Lots of people show up, you have a great event, and present the charity with a large check.
The reason why this works so well, of course, is that when you give back to the community, the community is eager to work with you as a partner. You gain valuable credibility and PR as a socially minded company, and attract that segment of the market that puts a high value on social responsibility. Combine this approach with superior products and services, and the combination is almost unbeatable.
Think about companies like Ben & Jerry's. Yes, the ice cream is delicious. But the company's willingness to donate 7.5 percent of pretax profits to social causes, its socially conscious purchasing and employment practices, environmentally friendly manufacturing methods, and counterculture ...