Christmas is coming, one of the most beautiful holidays during the year full of a magic atmosphere. Since the holidays are related to presents shopping, most of the companies are competing to launch promotions and give discounts at this period. This is why the promotions tend to be very similar as well most of the holiday activities. Christmas, however, is related not only to gifts but also to family traditions and values, as well as to charity activities. This is a period of the year when we need to open our hearts for others and offer love and contribution to those who need them.
This is why to the traditional Christmas promotions, your restaurant can add a charity activity developed by your own or in which you can engage also your customers. The idea is to present to your clients another face of your brand and business, i.e. that behind them there are people who are socially engaged. An activity like this can contribute a lot to your brand awareness by creating positive associations in your customers’ minds. Moreover, a similar initiative can differentiate you from many other competitors who use mainly Christmas promotions and discounts.
How to build a Christmas charity activity?
Choose and plan your initiative
The most important thing regarding your activity is to choose who you can help! Of course, what matters here are your personal preferences because you need to believe in the cause! This will give you the energy and inspiration to realize the project and also to transmit your enthusiasm to many other people. If you make something by obligation, respectively the results won’t be satisfying. You can find thousands of charity opportunities: donate money to a foundation or institution for their causes, or make a financial contribution to a hospital for the purchase of a particular medical facilities for the children department etc. Or, to make a donation to foundations which organize charity bazars, concerts or Christmas activities for people and children in need.
Keep in mind, that it is not always necessary to donate money. There are also other ways to help. You can, for example, offer the area of your restaurant to a foundation or an organization as a space where they can hold Christmas activities. This way the benefits for your restaurant will be multiple! By attracting people to your venue, you are promoting your brand and services. Another idea could be to engage your staff to participate in an initiative organized by someone else, in case you can’t develop it by your own. Thus, you give an opportunity to your staff members to feel contrbute and express them selves out of their concrete professional duties but at the same time remaining under your brand. Also, this could be a great team building opportunity because the team members will be united by a common cause and this supports the team spirit and collaboration.
If you decide to develop a charity activity by donating a specific sum, you have two possibilities to make it directly by your own or to engage also your customers to participate in it. You can leave a fundraising box at a visible place at your restaurant or communicate to customers that some percentage of their bill will go to the fundraising activity. The options are many, what is important is to choose the best way that suits your brand and business.
Search for a charity project that you could be easily communicated in the future. The shown results will increase the campaign final effect and will allow you to get higher benefits for your brand awareness.
If yousill lack ideas, there are charity platforms plenty with announcements for initiatives in which you can participate at. You can choose between hundred of activities, organizations and foundations and join the one which is closer to your objectives.
The success and the positive effect of your charity activity depends not only on how you organize it but also on how you communicate it. In this regard you need to have a strategic plan when, on which media channels and how often, you are going to promote your campaign. Your main objective is to reach actual and potential customers, as well as to make sure that a trace of your communication will be left even after the end of the activity. This is to say that you shouldn’t focus only on communication on Instagram because it won't be long lasting as a blog article, for instance. The reason is that in the future when people search for your brand name in Google, they could find the article and see that your brand engages and develops social responsibility campaign.
It is better to choose a mix of media channels both online and offline in order to cover a larger audience. These could be Facebook, Instagram, the venue website. The communication should be present also at your restaurant in some way, for example advertising materials, posters, leaflets distributed on the tables etc.
Be creative in your communication, use different formats as social media posts, stories, blog articles, banner on your website leading to the article dedicated to the charity initiative. Don’t limit the communication in only few posts. Plan it in time and volume. It can include a pre-announcement, after that a communication related to the development of the activity and at the end the project results.
If you decided to make the campaign together with another organisations, you can negotiate cross-promotions between the two companies which can be very profitable. Thus, your brand will reach a higher audience and will get a higher brand awareness.
The project results are extremely important and it is crucial to show them out. The good intentions are wonderful but what can create a real effect and generate positive brand perception are the concrete results of the charity activities. Document all the facts with pictures, videos, stories in the social media, if this is possible. For instance, if you have contributed to the event organization with your donation, write an article in your blog telling about all the event details and publish related posts on Facebook and Instagram. Let your customers be aware that choosing your brand and restaurant they, in some way, are contributing to social causes.
The charity causes are a wonderful opportunity to connect your business activity with a social important initiative. This could be a really good combination! Try to develop every year such activities and transform them in tradition. Thus the positive effect over your brand will be much higher and the customers will perceive you as a social responsible company.