Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Chase Gives Back Through Social Networking Sites

Chase is exploring a new type of charitable giving. The company is harnessing the power of social networking to give individuals and communities a say in corporate philanthropy. The program provides over 500,000 local organizations with a national platform to attract donors, promote their missions, and gain visibility with 300 million Facebook users. Simply by friend-ing Chase Community Giving, then voting for a winner, Facebook users can take a stake in which local charities matter most to communities and expand their impact even further.

The grassroots campaign donates $1 million to the organization with the most votes, $100,000 to the top five runners up, and $25,000 to one hundred finalists, which in most cases is the largest single donation in the charities’ histories. These charities span 31 states, providing services such as supporting families and children battling diseases, providing help for the homeless, protecting the environment, helping veterans and their families, and aiding challenged communities in the U.S. and worldwide. To be eligible, the charities had to be registered as a 501 (c)(3) non-profit, have operating expenses of $10 million or less, and have missions consistent with Chase’s social responsibility guidelines.

Voters selected the winner of this year’s contest, Invisible Children, a San Diego based charity that works through U.S. high school and college student volunteers to advocate for kidnapped children in Central Africa who are forced to serve as soldiers in the civil war in Uganda. The organization, which received 123,990 votes in the final round, will use the funding to build school and microeconomic empowerment program as well as raise awareness in North America.

Chase has received a ton of feedback from Community Giving Fans on what causes they support and what issues they care about. Getting customers and stakeholders to tell you what they want is goal numero uno marketing. And Chase has accomplished that goal, not just by asking, but by involving stakeholders in the decision making process. Facebook execs are also happy to see their social network harnessed for this philanthropic cause. Sheryl Sandberg, COO of Facebook said “Chase’s creative approach puts the power of corporate giving directly in the hands of Facebook users.”

One of the benefits of crowdsourced philanthropy is that letting the masses decide where the money should go is more transparent and less biased than other forms of philanthropy But letting voters take matters into their own hands also has its own obstacles. In the final hours of the contest, one organization received an influx of votes from newly created profiles on Facebook. Although it didn’t change the final outcome, monitoring these online giving mechanisms to ensure a fair playing field for all participants will be crucial. Stakeholders must trust that their vote matters and is counted accordingly in order to buy into using technology to support corporate philanthropy.

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1 comment:

  1. According to a recent McKinsey global survey, many executives doubt that their corporate philanthropy programs fully meet their social goals or stakeholders’ expectations. But an effective philanthropy program can deliver far more than simply enhancing your company’s reputation.

    Top business leaders share their insights about proven, key strategies for ensuring an effective and sustainable corporate philanthropy program.

    Business leaders in this video include:-

    Pam Flaherty, President & CEO, Citi Foundation & Director of Corporate Citizenship, Citi Group

    Deidre Lind, Executive Director, Philanthropy, Mattel

    Adrian Lathja, CLO, Accenture

    Tim McClimon, President, AmEx Foundation

    Caroline Roan, VP of Corporate Responsibility, Pfizer & Executive Director of the Pfizer Foundation

    Watch this insightful video @ http://bit.ly/fBp2GZ