Colabs with charities

How to align your brand to a good cause.

We’ve all heard about brands supporting charitable causes, but post-COVID has seen an increase in the number of causes needing extra support due to the drop in international tourism. Increasingly, I see more and more SMEs in the food industry filling the funding gap left due to Covid. Pairing your brand with a good cause can have a powerful impact for both sides, not only for a pure business and marketing strategy but also for your soul!

Think of it like this...

Your product can do good just by being purchased. Whether it’s $1 or 5% of your sale, you can assist many people/animals/livelihoods at once. 

Someone who does this well is Zeden Cider Co. They decided to team up with Forest & Bird New Zealand, a long-standing eco-warrior NGO protecting our flora and fauna. Each sale of Zeden cider sees 10% of the profit donated to Forest & Bird.

Read on for an insight into the journey Bevan Wait, Owner of Zeden Cider Co., took to align his cider with the perfect cause.

How did you choose the charity?

Forest and Bird has been around for nearly 100 years! They are a cornerstone of environmental protection in New Zealand. Much of the amazing work they do, is done by volunteers. They are an organisation that gets results, and they are incredibly efficient with their donations. It was an easy pick. I’ve always been interested in how I could help them with one of my brands.

How did you go about asking F&B to be involved?

Forest and Bird have an excellent head office behind all their activities with a lot of people really good at organising things – you need that when you have an army of 80,000 volunteers and members. Forest and Bird have a few corporate sponsors, so they are familiar with companies approaching them. Jo Prestwood is Forest & Bird’s Corporate Relationships manager. She has been our port of call and has been great to deal with – Jo made things very easy for us in the transition by ensuring we had the right messaging and logos to use on our packaging.

Why was it important to you to go with Forest and Bird?

Forest and Bird’s core two mantras are ‘Defending Nature’ & ‘Giving Nature A Voice’. To us, these mantras were incredibly appealing. Nature is on the back foot big time at the moment, and now, more than ever, it needs a voice and a helping hand. We felt that Forest & Bird is doing some of the best environmental charity work in New Zealand, and we knew that aligning with them would match well with our kiwi-made cider.

What has been the impact for your brand having a charity linked to it?

Imagine sipping an ice-cold cider and knowing that, with every sip, you are helping defend and give nature a voice. It would be a good feeling, right? That is what it is like for us and our fans. It’s a win-win for everyone.

Tips on finding a charity for your products:

  • Thorough research is needed when you choose to align with a specific organisation.  Be sure it fits your product well. Don’t choose something big just because you think it will get you more marketing exposure! The goal here is to provide tangible support; the press you may leverage is a bonus.
  • Think of the little guys. Find a charity that isn’t so well known or may not already have many revenue streams. You may find they are more willing to do a lot with you and support you in turn.
  • Fees. Larger, well-known charities require a yearly fee of $3000+ to use their branding on your products. Make sure you factor that in and understand that NGO’s still need to pay the bills!
  • Make sure you have a clear, winning presentation and strategy of how you want to align with your chosen cause. Going in blind or casually is unlikely to net you a win.
  • If you need help to brainstorm or find a charity, let me know!