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Give a little, gain a lot

Over the last decade we’ve seen the rise of trends such as learning-by-doing, the desire for greater purpose in work, and the popularity of the ‘side hustle’, which all show that marketers want to use their free time in more meaningful and useful ways. Anna Mullenneaux reflects on the popularity and vast benefits of volunteering your marketing skills.

We have witnessed charities and social enterprises needing marketing capabilities more than ever, as they seek to maintain relevance in a digital age and diversify their funding streams in the light of government funding constraints. Marketers seeking to foster greater purpose also have a lot to learn from working with causes in terms of how to create the kinds of social and environmental benefits that are becoming increasingly relevant to their day jobs.

Therefore, we believe that pro bono marketing can be as valuable for the marketing professional donating their time as it is for the cause gaining their support, which is why Paul Skinner and I created Pimp My Cause almost eight years ago. We knew from personal experience that it could be hugely rewarding to use our marketing expertise to help a good cause and we also understood it could be a useful way to diversify experience to support career development.

So we created a free online matchmaking platform to make it quicker and easier for marketers and good causes to find each other.

Since launching the platform we’ve helped over 2,200 marketers connect with over 2,500 causes, so they could find a cause with a mission that inspires them and that needs the skills they would like to offer.

While over the last decade there has been a decline in the overall number of volunteering hours contributed in the UK, we have seen an increase in the number of hours contributed by volunteers using their skills, either in their own time or through employer-supported volunteering schemes. And I believe this is because of the value that is created for the volunteers and their employers, as well as the causes supported.

An Accenture report showed that Employer-Supported Volunteering (ESV) is growing in the UK with 70% of FTSE 100 companies and 20% of SMEs offering ESV.
89% of volunteers reported increased job satisfaction; 87% of volunteers reported greater pride in the company; 76% of volunteers said they developed core work skills.

The hundreds of case studies on our website include the story of Catherine’s work for a youth development charity that helped her make the transition from marketing director for a global mobile company to a leadership role at the NSPCC. And another fantastic example is Kavita’s digital marketing work with a theatre social enterprise that allowed her to build up her online marketing credentials while on a career break caring for an elderly relative.

Everything we do at Pimp My Cause is about connecting marketers and causes in useful and interesting ways.

1. Individual marketers can use our free platform to connect with causes and offer them pro bono support.
2. Marketing teams can take on a Challenge talent development programme to tackle live charity briefs that are customised around their learning and development priorities.
3. Experienced marketers can attend our NED events with EMR to be matched up with causes looking for board trustees

Every marketer has their own reasons for getting involved. For junior marketers it can be an opportunity to enhance their skills, while promoting a cause mission that inspires them. For more experienced marketers it can be about gaining more advisory or board experience or working on tactical problems that they’re no longer involved with in their day jobs. And for marketing teams it can be an opportunity to develop creativity, team work and leaderships skills while building marketing solutions for great causes.

If you’re interested in exploring how you or your team can give a little of your time to a good cause and gain a rewarding experience that can build confidence, creativity and leadership capabilities, we would love to hear from you.

Pimp My Cause has partnered with EMR to support the development of marketers’ careers by providing volunteering and team talent development opportunities. Marketers interested in getting involved can find out more by contacting us here 

Pimp My Cause offers cause related marketing Challenges that enhance the marketing capabilities of individual marketers and marketing teams and supports over 2,500 charities and social enterprises with access to pro bono marketing in the process.

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