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Lakewood, COLO. - As one of the fastest growing and greenest carpet cleaning franchises, Oxi Fresh Carpet Cleaning has prided itself on standing out from the pack. The company does this through environmentally friendly cleaning practices, fast dry times, and by giving back to the world.
This last of those is why the brand was recently featured in the article “Community Connection: Giving to Get and Getting to Give” in Franchise Update Magazine. This publication, which focuses on entrepreneurship and leadership in the world of franchisors, highlighted the efforts of several different brands and their cause marketing campaigns.
But what is cause marketing? According to the Financial Times Lexicon, it’s “a form of marketing in which a company and a charity team up together to tackle a social or environmental problem and create business value for the company at the same time.”
It that sounds open ended, it certainly is. Cause marketing can take on a plethora of forms. It can be as simple as volunteering services as a school fundraiser to making donations for every product sold. The efforts can also be grand, as was American Express’s in 1983 when they helped restore the Statue of Liberty – in fact, they were the ones who coined the term “cause related marketing.”
The article by Helen Bond is, of course, talks about more than just efforts of brands like Kona Ice, Oxi Fresh, Tropical Smoothie Cafe, Freshii, Pearle Vision, and others. A big focus of the piece is about how entrepreneurs and franchisors should choose their partners for cause marketing.
Former Tropical Smoothie Cafe CEO Mike Rotondo had excellent advice: “You don’t want to do cause marketing for the sake of doing it,” he says, “You want to do your due diligence and make sure it is a match for you, your team, your values, and your culture. It is a partnership. You want to work with an organization that has a lot of the same beliefs and culture that you have. It is what will make the bond so powerful. It really does magic for both sides of the equation.”
Jonathan Barnett, Oxi Fresh’s founder and CEO, identified three different factors a brand should consider before choosing a charitable organization.
First among these was choosing an organization with a mission that connects to your brand. For Oxi Fresh’s carpet cleaning franchises, that was Water.org because, “we want to make the world a better place for everyone, and so does Water.org. That’s our ‘deep-level’ connection. Our ‘surface’ connection is water. It’s an important part of both our brands, making it a natural connection.”
As explained later in the article, Water.org works to help families in need around the world get access to safe water. Oxi Fresh prides itself on water conserving cleaning system that saves 95% of the water that other cleaners often waste.
Mr. Barnett’s second point was that it is extremely important for franchisors to choose partners who have an outstanding reputation. He recommends using online tools like CharityNavigator.org to find an organization that has outstanding record of transparency and financial accountability.
Last but not lest, Mr. Barnett said that one should never, “sign up to support a charity, brag about it online, and then send them next to nothing. Make a real contribution—not one that will endanger your business of course, but one that will enable the charity to make a real difference around the world.”
If you want to learn how other franchisors are supporting others through cause marketing while also developing their brands, click here for the original article.