Marketing a Good Cause
From the Printing For Less blog: May 17th, 2010, Author: Jared, Categories: Business, Growing your business, Small to Medium Businesses
While we print and mail a ton of postcards for our customers, we typically don’t get to see the results our customers generate from their marketing efforts. So it was especially good to hear back from one of our local print customers – The Community Closet – about a campaign they recently ran.
But first, a little context. The Community Closet is a non-profit thrift store serving Park County in Livingston, Montana. Since 2005, they have been providing low-cost, pre-owned, clothing and household items to those in need in the local community.
In addition to donating merchandise to schools and other non-profit organizations, the Community Closet board of directors distributes store profits to Park County non-profits, civic organizations, and individuals in crisis. One of these non-profits includes the Livingston and Park County Food Pantry – and Community Closet typically donates $1000 each year. But due to the poor economy of late, and the increase in demand at the food pantry, they wanted to give even more. The store set aside this past January as Food Pantry Month, and committed to donate 10% of revenues to the food pantry.
To promote their Food Pantry efforts, they came to PrintingForLess for help in designing both a postcard mailer and a print ad for the local newspaper. They spent just over $1,000 on their marketing campaign (postcards, postage and newspaper ads combined) and shared the following results with us:
An average daily revenue increase by 20% compared to January of 2009;
Total, January 2010 donations to the Food Pantry were $2,184.00 with a cash donation increase of 114%;
Many donors commented on the Food Pantry program when they came into the store with their thrift donations; and
The Community Closet was able to build positive awareness in the local community.
Caron Cooper – the Executive Director of the Community Closet – was ecstatic with the results they generated from their advertising campaign, and made the comment that she had never before seen such a direct correlation between their advertising efforts and results (increased revenues – and in this case, an increased donation to the food pantry).
Kudos to the Community Closet for a job well done and for being such a positive influence in our community!
Continue reading. . .
A Livingston nonprofit thrift store has found a way to sweeten the deal for Montanans interested in tapping the financial incentives of the Montana Energy Efficient Appliance Rebate Program, which kicks off Monday.
The state program will offer consumers $50 to $100 to invest in Energy Star-certified appliance products.
The Community Closet in Livingston announced Thursday that it will take donations of any used, 2001 or later-model refrigerators from customers who buy their new ‘fridges at Truex Furniture and Appliances in Livingston. The icing on the cake is a $50 to $100 contribution to a local charity of their choice, said executive director Caron Cooper.
The store’s Refrigerator Reinvestment Program has two goals, Cooper said. It allows the thrift store to remarket still-efficient used appliances. And it gives Community Closet customers a chance to replace their older, more energy-intensive units. [Read the article. . .]
Continue reading. . .
PRESS RELEASE: May 20, 2010
Refrigerator Reinvestment Program Launches May 24th in conjunction with Montana Appliance Rebates
Starting Monday May 24th the Montana Energy Efficient Appliance Rebate Program will offer financial incentives, from $50 to $100, for Montanans to invest in Energy Star-certified appliance products.
The Community Closet, a Livingston nonprofit thrift store, wants to sweeten the deal to encourage the donation of newer (2001 and later) refrigerators so they can remarket these still-efficient appliances so older energy-intensive units can be removed from the grid. According to Executive Director Caron Cooper, “Consumers with older refrigerator models should see a savings of $100 to $200 per year, something quite remarkable in these challenging economic times.”
The Refrigerator Re-Investment Program will partner with Truex Furniture and Appliances in Livingston. The Community Closet will offer new refrigerator purchasers a “reinvestment” bonus of between $50 – $100 to the local nonprofit of the buyer’s choice ($100 if you donate an Energy Star model, $50 for any regular model manufactured in 2001 or later).
Cooper, who holds a PhD in Energy and Resources, noted this is the first time the Community Closet has entered the efficiency market. “I’m stepping in because these federal stimulus incentives ignore most of my shoppers. Rebates aren’t affective for low and moderate-income families because these folks don’t have the cash or credit to purchase major appliances. In Montana a double-whammy is that most folks in this income category are on budget billing, so it could take up to 2 years to start seeing any payback on your utility bill.”
Community Closet hopes to provide up to 20 low-cost refrigerators to consumers. Executive Director of the Community Closet, Caron Cooper stated, “It’s unfortunate that this federally-funded ‘cash for clunkers’ program has one glaring error– you don’t have to own a clunker to qualify for a rebate. The latest refrigerator standards were implemented in 2001, so there might be a lot of good, efficient stock being replaced for aesthetic reasons like upgrading to stainless steel. We anticipate our units will still be 3 to 4 times more efficient than refrigerators made in the 70s, 80s or 90s, and we want to get that sort of savings out of the dump into the community.”
The potential for energy savings is significant, and by offering thrift-store prices, the consumer saves twice. Cooper estimates that the cost per kilowatt-hour [...]
Continue reading. . .