Ever since the election in November, there seems to be an awakening of political activism. As a business owner, you may wonder what you can do without alienating customers or clients.
First thing I want to tell you is this: there is always a chance to alienate customers and clients since no one thinks the same. So the risk is definitely there.
This article breaks down just a few ways business owners can use their influence to have an impact on a political issue. You will learn things that you can take action on immediately.
1. Donate To A Charity
Granted, this isn’t the most “radical” option. However, what could be radical is the issue that you are standing for and whether you make the donation public. Let’s talk about making it radical in a hypothetical situation. You could be a business owner that is absolutely opposed to Donald Trump’s Muslim ban. As a result, you could post a sign in your store, on your website, office, etc., that lets clients, customers, and staff know that a portion of the revenue will be donated to ACLU’s efforts to combat the ban in court.
2. Announcing The Charity or Cause You Support
This piggy backs off of #1. Once you make this decision, you cane take it public in a much bigger way via a social media. You can go live on a number of platforms to announce that a portion of your revenue will go to X organization and way. Some of the platforms you can use to do this are Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. As you go live, people will post comments and you can address them while you are live. Answer their questions and interact with your users.
3. Be A Mentor
As a business owner, you are an expert in your field and others want to learn from you. You can mentor someone who is interested in entrepreneurship – especially if they are interested in the same industry that you reside in. The person you are mentoring could be a worker or volunteer for the organization you are supporting.
4. Hold A “Call Your Congressman” Session
Right now, people are very active in contacting their government representative and letting their feelings be known. You can make an event of this by allowing the use of your space for a group of people to come together and call their representatives.
5. Participate In Community Actions
Yes, you can march, you can protest – that is absolutely awesome. Taking it another level and making it radical would be to wear a your company’s branded t-shirt while you participate, thus, linking it to the stance.
6. Create A Political Action Committee (PAC)
This can also going with #2. You can use a portion of your profits to fund the PAC and it’s campaigns.
7. Inform Your Followers
Post news and information to your social media profiles about an issue. In the earlier Muslim ban example, you could post news articles about the ACLU’s actions. You could also post articles showing the effect the ban is having on people. Also, keep your followers informed of anything you are doing in regards to the issue.
Now, keep in mind, wading into politics or a controversial issue absolutely has its risks. These include:
- Strangers who were never clients or customers leaving negative Yelp reviews
- Actual clients or customers taking their business elsewhere
- Bad publicity
So, definitely think this through before taking action. If you want to play it safe, choose an issue that is less controversial like supporting an orphanage or an after school program.
If you have any other suggestions on how business owners can take action, feel free to share in the comments!
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