You and your medical practice staff care for your patients day in and day out, but you also care about giving back to your local community! Giving back to causes your care about help your patients, referral sources and the public see your generous spirit and increase your medical practice’s brand exposure. Whether it’s participating in a cancer walk, sponsoring a gala for a nonprofit that helps kids suffering with illness or hosting a family wellness festival, this great community work needs to be planned out so that you maximize the opportunity.

  1. As a team, develop a community outreach strategy for the year.  What organizations are you or your partners already passionate about?  Do they align with your specialty?  Does your office staff already do some volunteering together or participate in a run or walk for charity?  Do you want to do something quarterly, or sponsor one big signature event?  Mapping out a plan is a great way to budget and it makes it easier to decline all the asks that you may get that just don’t fit with your plan.
  2. Contact the charity that interests you and your medical practice.  Executive Directors or Development Directors are your key contacts. See what events they have coming up and what aligns with your calendar and interests. They will have sponsorship packages that you can review at different price points. You may want to ask whether any of your competitors are already in this space so that you stand out. Remember, these packages are negotiable so you can ask for additional benefits that may help you stand out.  Examples include having them tag you 5 times on social media leading up to the event and putting your practice logo on their website, tickets, banners at the event or an ad in the program. Make sure your practice name is included in any press releases or media outreach. If it’s an event, make sure your medical practice is mentioned at the podium with an explanation about why this charity matters to you and your practice.
  3. Get the word out. You will want to include your participation in any e-newsletters or newsletters you do to your patients, referral sources or potential referral sources.  You also need to share your involvement on your own social media channels leading up to the event and post pictures afterwards of you and your team in attendance. The nonprofit will likely do a press release, but it’s always good to ask them to do it and encourage it.  Smaller towns and cities are always looking to cover “feel good” events to help the charities even gain more exposure and money.  Ask them if they would include a quote from you in it. You may also want to add a tab to your website called “Community Matters” and list out the charities that you sponsor or provide volunteers too.  Ask the nonprofit if you can include their logo too.  Pictures of you and your team on this page help patients and referral sources see you care and work to make a difference in your local community.

Charitable acts are performed without the expectation of direct financial gain, but they certainly are not without their own rewards.  When medical practices give back to causes in the community, people involved in those causes tend to want to support the medical practice in return. Serving with purpose goes far in increasing your brand awareness.  Building a reserve of goodwill in your community means cultivating relationships with potential referral sources and patients and helping to build a pipeline for your medical practice. It’s also a great way to involve your team and increase employee engagement and fun for your team!  Nothing fills the spirit like helping others and fostering positive teamwork!