Building a Company Team – Beyond Non-Profit Event Sponsorship

If your company is a proud sponsor of a non-profit organization’s special event, your business is in a great position to reap the benefits of cause marketing.  The goodwill gesture, partial tax deductions and logo inclusion in a variety of marketing materials are often the traditional benefits, but how can you go a little deeper to maximize your company’s experience?  Or, what if your company isn’t in a position to sponsor the event per se, but still wants to brand with an important cause?  Depending on the event you choose to support, there could be an opportunity to build a corporate team to participate in the function.  Building a corporate team is a wonderful thing to do, not only to support your community through charitable giving, but also to benefit your company by building team spirit among your employees and developing a positive reputation for your company.  Here are 12 helpful tips to help you launch a successful company team:

  1. Identify a team captain, or co-captains – These roles are best filled by people that are either connected to the cause on a personal level and/or have experience in managing people.
  2. Name your team – Including your company name in the team name is ideal, but keep in mind that fundraising events are fun, so don’t hesitate to get creative with it.
  3. Set your fundraising goals – Think big! It’s important to set a stretch goal that is challenging, but attainable.
  4. Customize your webpage through the organization’s fundraising portal – Larger organizations will allow you to create a vanity URL, enabling teams to include their story and photos as well as to send emails and collect online donations through their site.  If your company has a special connection to the mission of the organization, use this page to help people understand your connection.
  5. Update your company website – Ask your contact at the non-profit organization if you can use their logo on your website and promote your involvement in the event.
  6. Recruit team members – Get posters, brochures and other materials from your non-profit event manager and position them in your office or store.  Send emails and use Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn to let people know you’re actively recruiting members for your team.
  7. Involve your HR department – If the event is physical in nature (a walk, run, bike ride, etc.), your HR department might be able to help to grow your company’s involvement into a health and wellness event offered to all employees.  Some companies even offer their employees wellness points or health credits for participating in athletic fundraisers.
  8. Train as a team – Some events require training, such as bike rides, 5K runs, or triathlons.  This is a great opportunity to train as a team.  Just be sure to choose safe routes that are accessible to all of your team members.
  9. Order customized team apparel – On the day of the event, make sure your team is logo-branded in shirts or hats/headbands, etc.  This is a wonderful way to promote your brand, and show your company’s dedication to the community.
  10. Volunteer – Some of your colleagues may not be able to participate in the athletic activity, but might still want to get involved and enjoy the day.  Learn if there are volunteer opportunities at the event, and make sure all of your volunteers show their support for your company by proudly wearing your branded apparel at the event, along with the rest of the team!
  11. Take photos – Organize a time and place for a team photo and take a lot of photos throughout the day.  Use the photos for social media posts, to display in your office, and to include in thank you notes post-event.
  12. Send thank you notes – Don’t forget to thank the people who were on your team with a personal note.  It’s also a great idea to personally thank each of the folks who made personal donations to your company team’s success.

Enjoy the experience; it will be worth it!


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