Marketing Your Business by Hosting a Charity Event

American Cancer Society Relay for Life in Modesto, CA. June 21, 2008. Johansen High School.

American Cancer Society Relay for Life in Modesto, CA. June 21, 2008. Johansen High School.

There are many reasons why businesses should host charity events—they can encourage your employees to work together as well as build morale. However, while the primary goal is to raise money for cancer treatments, families in need, or another worthy cause, charity events also provide you with an excellent opportunity to market your business. The following are different types of charity events you can host and how you can work a marketing strategy into the plan.

Golf Tournaments

Out of all the different charity events I have helped organize, I can tell you that hosting golf tournaments require the most time and effort. From setting a date and advertising the event to spending hours going door to door in search of players, prizes, sponsors, and donations, charity golf tournaments require several months of planning. In the end, the hard work is worth it when you see everyone laughing and having fun. Golf tournaments are also a great way to raise a lot of money for your cause.

During the months of planning, it is a wise idea to order promotional products with your business logo printed on them. Some ideas include water bottles, coffee mugs, bottle openers, tote bags, pens, note pads, and shirts. Not only do promotional products make excellent door prizes, but they will also remind everyone of who hosted such an enjoyable event.

Events for Kids

From the 2nd Annual Case Relay for LifeNext to golf tournaments, hosting a charity event especially for kids is the second timeliest to organize, and there are several fun idea from which you can choose. Some include a movie night at a local theatre, family day with games, build your own pizza, cake, or other type of fun food, or hiring an entertainer to create balloon animals and paint faces. Also, keep in mind the time of year when hosting an event for kids. You can throw a holiday party with a Halloween or Christmas theme where children can dress up for prizes or sit on Santa’s lap.

Although you spend money to coordinate the event, you can also raise money for your charity by requesting donations at the door. Sometimes, parents need a little encouragement to attend an event for their kids, so come up with ways to get adults there too. You can raffle prizes for $1 a ticket as another way to raise money for your charity as well as entice adults to come.

Similar to the golf tournament, you can order promotional products to hand out as door prizes. However, you would want to order products that kids would enjoy, as well as some for the adults too. Door prizes for kids could include piggy banks, footballs, coloring books, Rubik’s cubes, and beach buckets.

Breakfast, Lunch, or Dinner Fundraisers

Summertime is notorious for cookouts and picnics, but this type of charity event is great for any time of year. Host a fundraising event with free food and ask for donations toward your charity. You can organize the fundraiser at your business’s office, a park, a rental party room, or a restaurant.

This type of event is another excellent opportunity to distribute door prizes with your company logo imprinted on them. Hosting a memorable breakfast, lunch, or dinner party will undoubtedly bring new and returning customers to your business.


The three events I described above can all lead to this one, final moment. Although you may not actually host a charity telethon, your company can participate in one if the opportunity arises. Contact the director or coordinator of the telethon and establish that you and a few of your employees would like to answer phone calls and accept donations.

You may be wondering how you can market your business during a telethon if you will only be sitting in the background answering calls. However, there is a reason why you spent several months fundraising for this one charity. Well, all of your hard work will pay off when you receive your fifteen minutes of fame.

Arrange a segment on the show so you can present your donation to the host of the telethon. In my experience, the host will take about 10 to 15 minutes talking with you about your business and the different events you organized to raise the money for the charity. You can even have a giant check printed specially for telethon and then deliver the actual check off air.

Unparalleled Exposure

The type of exposure your business can receive from hosting a charity event is like no other. People will see that you are not only about your business, but you enjoy giving back to your community and see it as a responsibility too. Consumers love working with selfless companies that give back, and, if you market your business the right way, you will see your profits and customer loyalty rise.

2 Comments on "Marketing Your Business by Hosting a Charity Event"

  1. Meghan – Great advice. Small business owners have a great tool at their disposal to compete with their large competitors by getting involved in the community. Charity events is a great way to do it. The small business owners should also look into participating in fund raising, school involvement and others.

    I wrote a similar article on community involvement that you might be interested in reading too –

  2. Meghan Faye Wolff | October 16, 2012 at 12:54 pm | Reply

    Thanks, Harry. I'm glad you liked it! Your article had some really great tips too, especially the one about contributing a certain percentage of sales to the charity. Being a young adult, I began participating in charities and fundraising at a young age, and it is one of the most fulfilling experiences!

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