Givewith Directs Social Impact with Data-Driven Authority



Welcome to our next method profile on Givewith! Our previous entry focused on using cross-promotion in social enterprise. In operating any venture, everything flows from your approach, and identifying a proper method helps you effectively fulfill your team’s initiative.

Together, we’ll be profiling interesting social enterprises to discuss an anchor method in their strive for social good. The term “anchor method” is to express the intentional and grounded nature of the approaches propelling a social enterprise forward.

This post is an outside observation of a company for inspiration in social enterprise initiative improvements.

In today’s post, we’ll look into research-backed strategist Givewith leveraging Data-Driven Authority. Givewith provides a technology platform to manage and strategize social impact into business transactions.

Knowing the Company: Givewith

Givewith is a technology platform guiding companies in their journey of integrating social impact with increased performance results. Behind the technology, a philosophy of abundance helps leverage B2B transactions. Givewith works with the idea that businesses can establish funding for social impact upfront, instead of social impact being an afterthought. Regularly, funding for social impact comes after a list of budget deductions, such as employees, taxes, and business expenses. Paul Polizzotto, founder of Givewith, proposed that funding for social impact should be handled during initial business transactions.

Polizzotto first tested his ideas in 2008 when convincing CBS that building support for social causes into the ad sales process would increase the ad time sold. Ad sales with built-in social impact support added $600 million to revenue for CBS. Separately, $100 million was added to social impact funding. This began what Polizzotto would identify as Social Value Economics, which is the leading factor of Givewith.

In Givewith, the company offers five solutions: Net Zero Now™, Sales, Procurement, Corporate Responsibility, and Executive. Clients mold their transactions and business deals around social impact  factors related to these aspects. Givewith created a system where committing to social impact early on helps secure funding for social causes, but also benefits the company. Corporate Social Responsibility metrics and ESG (environmental, social, and governance) scores are maintained through the intentional focus of social causes at the forefront.

A list of organizations is kept in the Givewith Social Impact Network. The company ensures clients are supporting organization causes that are “research-validated, data-driven programs spanning all 17 of the UN Sustainable Development Goals.”

With determination, Givewith is “creating shared value for sellers, buyers, society, and the planet”.

In the FAQ, Givewith describes their technology service purpose: “Givewith is neither a charity nor a philanthropy. Our platform enables a new business model that unlocks new funding for social impact. Givewith does not replace your company’s current philanthropic efforts. We provide more momentum for your initiatives through new funding sources that direct more dollars towards critical causes.”

Strong Data Confirmation

A clear competitive edge Givewith pushes is the ability to confirm data-driven results. The company uses data as their main persuasion tool. Think back to the CBS story mentioned earlier. Telling this story is the first attempt in establishing trust in the Givewith service, and the first point to validating value.

While browsing the site, the individual solution pages include percentages business could possibly be impressed by. Givewith’s site contains numerous metrics to becoming a more convincing case for clients. Transparency with data shows confidence, while transparency with impressive data shows authority. One clear case of Givewith emphasizing their data points is in their FAQ. A question asks about the importance of social impact in customer acquisition and retention strategy, and the response includes the following data: “Research with Boston Consulting Group has confirmed Givewith’s value as a sales asset: Procurement executives value $1 of social impact through Givewith 13x as much as they value $1 of discount.”

Stating this data gives two sources of authority. One is the actual results being confirmed by the data. The other source is the Boston Consulting Group. Having another entity, preferably well-known, confirm the data makes the results appear less refutable. The impact is similar to having an influential reference on a resume.

Givewith pushes data and facts from recorded personal experiences and confirmation of impact from high authority sources. Both strengthen the company’s perceived authority.

Lessen the Client’s Fear of Risk

Between the possibility of loss and the possibility of gain, people tend to avoid loss more than they pursue gain. Business is not much different.

To lessen the fear of risk, clients can feel even more secured with the amount of data provided on the technology platform. Givewith tracks everything for the clients, and gives a bonus by creating storytelling content for clients to share their own data-driven details.

Integrating social impact as an essential to business transactions creates an all-around incentive. Givewith‘s approach convinces clients that social causes can be an advantage, and helps eliminate the excuses for not including social impact. This priority is made clear in Givewith’s FAQ:

“Givewith turns your company’s support for social causes into a concrete competitive advantage.”

Emphasizing business benefits  to clients is not unheard of, and reading the statement above could bring Copia’s Gold Aim Marketing back to your mind. Data-Driven Authority takes a slightly different approach than Copia using the Gold Aim Marketing anchor method. Copia also targeted businesses and a direct audience by speaking to the concerns of that audience. Different from Givewith, Copia’s persuasion fed on presenting the incentives through words, not data. This doesn’t mean Copia does not have data to back their claims, but the initiative chose a separate focus. Ultimately, both approaches are meant to comfort and persuade clients.

Applicable Takeaway

An anchor based on Data-Driven Authority builds trust among potential clients. One beneficial experiment is A/B testing a landing page. One landing page should be crafted with narrative-driven copy, and the other with data-driven copy. Record your results to understand which communication style fits your audience.

Givewith’s irrefutable Data-Driven Authority completes this profile.

People Helping People Podcast is seeking methods clearly supporting an effective impact. Observations and discussions on happenings in the social enterprise community is a significant part of our contribution to social good. Continue to check-in for more conversation-starting content.

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