Exploring For-Profit Opportunities for Nonprofit Growth
Has your nonprofit organization considered engaging in a strategic partnership with a for-profit business? These days, it’s becoming increasingly more difficult for nonprofits to secure funds from traditional fundraising methods. If you’re scratching your head and wondering why, it’s because there is an unlimited supply of nonprofits to choose from and donors are looking for more than just a good mission to donate to. This is where nonprofits have to think creatively and outside of the box.
Exploring for-profit opportunities is one way that nonprofits can look to when looking for an additional stream of revenue. You may be asking… “Why would a for-profit business partner with a nonprofit? What can we offer them?” One of the best things about living in this generation is that everyone wants to be philanthropic, and that includes for-profit businesses. Just look at the mega-corporations that have created charitable arms — The Coca-Cola Foundation, Wells Fargo Foundation, Walmart Foundation, Intel Foundation, just to name a few.
Corporate Giving Is Growing
For-profit businesses want to be socially responsible, because it has internal and external benefits — improves public image, but also boosts employee engagement. People want to support companies that are prioritizing social good, and it shows.
In 2018, charitable giving had a grand total of $427.71 billion, a significant increase from $410 billion from 2017. While individual giving remains the biggest contributor to charitable giving, it fell 1.1% from the previous year. Interestingly enough, corporate giving increased 5.4% from the previous year, with a total of $20 billion. What we’re seeing is a slight decrease in individual giving year after year and an increase in corporate giving, which shows us that for-profit businesses are engaging in more philanthropic initiatives.
In the “Challenges, Opportunities and Insurance Buying Trends in the Nonprofit Industry” study, only 27% of nonprofits are actively exploring for-profit opportunities, while 13% are planning to explore and 60% have no plans to explore for-profit opportunities (see graph below). This presents an enormous open opportunity for nonprofits to engage in strategic partnerships with for-profit businesses.
If your nonprofit is interested in pursuing a for-profit partnership, here’s what you have to look for, according to GuideStar:
- Find a business that strongly aligns with your organization’s values.
- Find a business that is local to the community that you work with.
- By finding a business that aligns with your organization and is local, it will significantly help your outreach.
Has your nonprofit partnered with a for-profit business? We’d love to hear about it. Let us know what you think in the comments below!
Nhu Te is senior content manager at Fundraise Up, the AI-powered online donation platform for enterprise nonprofits. In her work, she focuses on helping nonprofits create more impact through personalized donor relations, digital fundraising and thoughtful use of technology.