As a public relations initiative, Artie Isaac’s approach to corporate Christmas cards is brilliant. His company’s “holiday cards” are $8 cheques sent to contacts who are asked to forward them to a charity of the receipient’s choice. This is personal, requires action and evidences strong social values.
The Charities Advisory Trust recently presented its Scrooge Awards highlighting how little is actually donated to good causes when you buy charity cards. Although only 53% of those receiving Issac’s cards actually forward the cheques, many add extra themselves, making this a clear and accountable donation to a cause of genuine interest to the receiver. As such, it combines social responsibility with client relationship building and therefore qualifies in my book as excellent public relations.
I wish more companies would be so imaginative and genuine rather than sending some off-the-shelf charity card design, telling me they’ve donated on my behalf to their chosen charity – or wasting money on some bizarrely creative design which is largely inappropriate in Christmas terms (witness most of the car company cards I’ve received this year).
I hope Artie doesn’t mind, but I’m going to adopt his idea myself, with £5 cheques “in the post” to a few dozen of my favourite contacts.