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What is a Home Inspection?
All Checkout Charity should be eradicated.  XML
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Nathan
King
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Joined: 06/17/2014 09:32 PM EDT
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Location: Carmel, IN
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Businesses should give back, but they shouldn't ask their clients to...at least not without an incentive. Certainly don't make it awkward. So many do it wrong, only a few get it right.

Let me give you two great examples. First, the good.

"Buy a lady a drink"

Stella Artois is selling a chalice (fancy beer glass) that supports clean drinking water in developing countries. It's a brilliant way to involve customers in giving...Mophie did the same thing with a (RED) case that supported AIDS work in Africa. You get cool thing X to satisfy your need for frivolous consumerism, plus you get to feel good about it. Win-Win.

Neither asked their clients to give. They gave them an incentive to participate in something charitable, and in the process made a healthy profit. Stella gets bonus point for taking advantage of the branding opportunity- Mophie may have done so as well if they weren't in the brutally competitive market of cell phone accessories.


Now let's go to the bad example. It's everywhere... "Checkout Charity".

Whether it's the grocery store, The toy store, the gas station, the drug store, the pet store, or even a fast food chain I happened to witness this at last week- it's pathetic and awkward.

"Oh Nathan, that's harsh."

No, it's not. Let's go with the awkward part first. Let's say you called me today for some customer service issue or to order a warranty. At the end of the call, after I've already received your credit card info and before I press the button, I say to you, "Would you like to donate a dollar to help someone less fortunate than you break the cycle of homelessness?" How would that make you feel? If you say "Yes", you're not a responsible philanthropist because you don't really know what you're supporting. If you say "No", then you're personally condemning a single mom and her shivering cold child to living on a sidewalk.

Now take that experience times hundreds of thousands working registers at thousands of retail brands across the country. Yes, awkward for both them and the customer. Doesn't help that most of the time you have others all around you to witness this moral question of whether you want to end homelessness, cure cancer, or save kittens from euthenization...and it's coming from someone who likely has no idea what the organization is about or what percentage of donation make it to those in need.

It's pathetic as well. These offers basically give the customer the responsibility to be charitable. It puts nothing on the company- no matching, no education about the opportunity, no percentage of sales...basically just the statement to the customer that "we're so committed to this charity that we'll let you give to it and they should be thanking us (as should you) for allowing this opportunity at the register or point of sale.


All Checkout Charity should be eradicated.

I'm not saying Charity should be eradicated, just the irresponsible and lame brand of charity I described above. Charity is good, and if you get asked for $1 at the checkout today, go home and give $2 to something you're passionate about- but don't give at the register. Avoid shopping there if possible.


What a business owner should do.

Make giving fun and effective. It can be good for the community and good for your business.

Let's put this in terms of a home inspection business. I'll give you three scenarios, "bad" "better" and "best";


Bad-

Tell the client at the home inspection that at your company you care about ending homelessness and wonder if they do too. Offer the opportunity to add $1 to the inspection fee to end homelessness.

You'll alienate your clients and you've given nothing. Definitely bad!


Better-

Name a specific charity- perhaps a well-known homeless shelter in your area- and suggest in advertising that you give a percentage of proceeds to that shelter, perhaps during the winter months.

You've patted yourself on the back, yes, but you did so with integrity as you are a giver!


Best-

Offer a $10 discount on your home inspection when the client brings a lightly used coat or jacket to the inspection, and encourage them to bring up to 3. Make sure they are notified of this on every call, and get corresponding fliers out the door as well. Make sure to let everyone know that you donate these coats and jackets to a well-known homeless shelter in the area.

Now you've involved the client in giving, in a way they can get excited about, you've put coats on kids and adults that needed them desperately, and the agents & clients see you as a true giver- giving not only up to $30 of your hard earned inspection fees, but also the time to drop those coats off in an area they wouldn't even drive through.



I'd love to take credit for brilliant scenario #3 there but I can't. Patty Thornberry thought of it and has delivered thousands of coats over the years personally to a homeless shelter in Indy.

P. Nathan Thornberry
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Juan Jimenez
Seal Team 6
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Joined: 06/18/2014 08:53 PM EDT
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They don't even let you put your name on a card for the wall display anymore.

http://www.ahouseonarock.com
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Nathan
King
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Joined: 06/17/2014 09:32 PM EDT
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Location: Carmel, IN
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Juan Jimenez wrote:They don't even let you put your name on a card for the wall display anymore.


When they do that, at least they make it fun. I always give the $1 when they offer that, and then I write real big on it "Nathan.TV"

P. Nathan Thornberry
www.Nathan.tv
Take Your Career to the Next Level > https://youtu.be/hdBCJbl5byo
The #1 Vendor in Real Estate & Home Inspection
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gfricke
The Big Lebowski
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Joined: 06/19/2014 09:51 PM EDT
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Location: St Petersburg, FL
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The other part of that equation is, YOU don't get a charity receipt for taxes, the big corporations get to deduct that from THEIR statements.

Glenn Fricke
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Pete Campbell
Jedi
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Joined: 06/18/2014 10:55 PM EDT
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Location: Fort Pierce, SE Florida
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I was 'axked' this same question at a fast food place the other day, in front of other customers.

I politefully 'deklined' and said my 'fambly' has certain charities that we donate to.

And yes, glenn fricke, I always get a tax deduction for my charitable donations. Excellent point, sir!

Pete Campbell
Guaranteed Inspections
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Cameron Anderson
P. Diddy
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Joined: 09/27/2014 09:37 AM EDT
Messages: 602
Location: Peoria, IL
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You all are too insecure. Say yes if you feel like it, or say "No thank you" if you don't. Move on with your day.

You can be certain everyone else in line is worried about their own answer to the solicitation and not paying much attention to yours.
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sreid71
Liger
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Joined: 06/22/2014 09:24 PM EDT
Messages: 15
Location: Yucaipa, ca
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I really like the #3 senerio! I do alot of charity work so anything fresh and new that I can do to get more interest for my organization is worth looking at, in my opinion. Coming up with the best presentation is the key to making it become successful is the challenge. I'll let you know when I do it.

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