Kevin Bacon sings praises of shopping local for your cause

Kevin Bacon singing gospel? In a plaid suit? In outer space?

Yeah, we were pretty excited that he would do all of that for a good cause as well. To be clear, he was doing it for EVERY good cause.

Over 200 local, independent businesses will give a portion of your purchases to any school or charity you choose when you mention Shift Your Shopping For Good at the register, from Small Business Saturday (11/30) thru #GivingTuesday (12/3). New businesses can instantly join the campaign, too!

While discount-hungry shoppers stampede into big box stores, clamoring for Black Friday deals, you and other community-minded customers can be part of the biggest small business give back ever. Benefiting your favorite charity is as simple as submitting a flyer with the name of your nonprofit when paying your bill!

New spin on “restaurant night” fundraisers removes the hassle for nonprofits and businesses

Coastal Boxer Rescue of Florida logoCoastal Boxer Rescue of Florida (CBR) is a small, volunteer-run nonprofit organization that was founded in 2005 to rescue abused, abandoned, and neglected boxers that need new homes. Within their nine-county service area, they rescue as many as 200 dogs each year from dangerous situations, giving them medical care, temporarily placing them into volunteer foster homes, and then ultimately placing them in permanent, loving homes.

The rescue process is not cheap, however. Coastal Boxer Rescue spends as much as $10,000 a month in veterinary bills, placing a constant financial strain on the organization. “Sometimes it seems like all I do is beg for donations,” said Angie Friers, the president of the organization. CBR has a huge following on Facebook, and regularly posts donation pleas for specific dogs, but that only goes so far. “The sad truth is that it’s hard to raise money for dogs that don’t have outward signs of abuse or neglect,” said Friers. “Any time we rescue a boxer that needs substantial medical care but looks perfectly fine on the outside, it can be very hard to raise enough money.”

CBR does hold traditional fundraising events throughout the year, but larger events are a huge time commitment for their all-volunteer force. They’ve also tried to raise money through business partnerships, but haven’t had much luck. “There are a million charities out there, and so we first have to find a business owner that cares specifically about our cause,” said Friers. “We’re volunteers and have full-time jobs, so it’s hard to find the time to build a partnership when our primary focus is rescuing as many dogs as possible.”

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Donate doubloons to your customer’s cause when they Talk Like A Pirate

Talk Like A Pirate Day logoTomorrow (September 19) is the 11th annual International Talk Like A Pirate Day. This year, the Pirate Guys are urgin’ their fans around the world to use their Talk Like A Pirate Day parties to pass the pirate hat for a worthy cause.

As a small business owner, you can drive sales in a fun and unique way by giving to each customer’s charity of choice when they talk like a pirate! Causetown handles all the details, including charity vetting, sales tracking, promotion, fund disbursement, and more.

Whether you want to turn your favorite holiday into a charitable sales promotion or simply bring in extra customers on your slowest day each week, Causetown enables you to attract community-minded customers with just a few clicks of the mouse. Simply by launching a free promotion, you can generate the kind of buzz and reputational benefit that simply can’t be matched by coupons and other discount schemes.

So… ARRRR ye ready to get goin’ with Causetown, or will ya be walkin’ the plank??

Cider Mill launches its first-ever “CharityFest” to support local schools & nonprofits

Louisburg Cider Mill

Founded in 1977 in the rolling hills of rural Kansas, the Louisburg Cider Mill draws visitors from all over the Kansas City area with their fresh-pressed apple cider, fruit butters, and cider donuts. They celebrate the Fall harvest each year through a community festival called “Ciderfest.”

Because the local community has been integral to their success, owners Tom and Shelly Schierman wanted to enhance this year’s Fall celebration in a unique way by giving back to the causes their customers care about. With the help of Causetown, the Schiermans launched their first-ever “CharityFest” the weekend before Ciderfest, during which 20% of sales will be donated to the school or nonprofit of the customer’s choice.

Participating in CharityFest couldn’t be simpler: Customers make a purchase on Saturday, September 21 (8am – 6pm) or Sunday, September 22 (10am – 6pm), mention the CharityFest, and provide the name of their preferred school or nonprofit. Causetown will mail 100% of the designated funds to the selected groups after the event. Organizations don’t even have to register in advance!

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Gourmet Burgers Found to be Good for Community Health

Holy Cow quarter donation programThe idea originated last year after a citywide fundraising day for nonprofits in Alexandria, Virginia. Restaurateur “Mango Mike” Anderson, the owner of Mango Mike’s, and John Porter, executive director of the community foundation ACT for Alexandria, wanted to give local charities a new way to raise funds year-round to supplement their normal fundraising activities. So when Anderson and his business partner Bill Blackburn launched a “gourmet burger joint” called Holy Cow in November 2012, they decided to donate a quarter for every burger sold to a local nonprofit of the customer’s choice.

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Do You Know What 83% of Your Customers Want?

Boutiques Give Back signAccording to leading research from Cone Communications, 4 in 5 customers want opportunities to buy products and services that benefit a cause. The vast majority of these consumers also want it to be THEIR cause. What can you do to serve this consumer interest?

Major corporations spend billions of dollars addressing this demand through “cause marketing” campaings. Macy’s helps raise millions for charity through “Shop For A Cause.” Panera sells pink bagels that support breast cancer research. And every December for the past five years, Subaru has offered to “Share The Love,” allowing customers to designate one of five major charities to receive $250 when they purchase a new car. These are just a few examples of successful campaigns run by major companies.

The good news is you don’t need a big marketing budget or a fancy PR team to partner with great nonprofits. We created Causetown so that small businesses can look like a million bucks without spending a fortune. Just take a minute to pick times during which you want to drive sales by doing good. Whether you want to donate a dollar for every craft beer purchased, or donate 20% of sales when customers talk like a pirate, you can do that and everything in between.

You can even let every customer choose their own favorite school or nonprofit to benefit! Literally all 1,000,000+ charities in the country are automatically included – they don’t even need to sign up. We’ve automated the entire process, from tracking sales to disbursing funds to providing customers and nonprofits with real-time reporting on the donations you’ve made.

Increase sales by giving customers what they want… and supporting every cause in town at the same time.

Raise $20 per person through this unique teambuilder and fundraiser!

Urban Race fundraising flyer DCLooking for a unique teambuilder and fundraiser for your nonprofit? Rally a team and enter a CitySolve Urban Adventure Race in your town! This race is like a scavenger hunt, The Amazing Race and Trivial Pursuit all mixed together. Not an athlete? No problem! You will be solving clever clues and facing fun challenges while navigating local neighborhoods by foot and public transportation. Register through Causetown to access a discounted fee ($40), and HALF of that amount will go back to your school or nonprofit organization!

Here are the upcoming CitySolve urban races:

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