5 Reasons Your Business Should Engage with Other Community Organizations

By Scout Will, Assistant Brand Manager

In today’s market, many companies are in a head-down, focus-on-the-bottom-line approach to doing business, with everyone from top execs to new employees reeling from the challenges of the past few years. At Alpha Dog Advertising, we’ve maintained the perspective that good business — and goodwill — happens when companies engage with the community and connect with its people.

Because our agency is located in downtown Lancaster, we have the perfect opportunity to establish a strong presence, build relationships, and create new opportunities in our city. We love being part of what’s happening in our community, and we think all businesses should get involved with other organizations in their area.

Let’s take a closer look at five great reasons for businesses to engage with companies and nonprofits in their community.

1. Build Relationships

Partnering with other organizations in the community can help businesses develop meaningful relationships and establish trust with potential customers and allies. Building connections can open doors to new opportunities, such as partnerships, collaborations, and referrals.

At Alpha Dog, we especially love promoting restaurants, cafés, and other local eateries. Lancaster has incredible food options, so several times a month, we find a reason to celebrate as an agency, whether it’s a birthday, holiday, new hire, promotion, or happy hour event. Our social committee does a fantastic job organizing activities with foods from some of our favorite local spots, with a few recent picks being Café One Eight, Two Poodles Bagels, and our neighbor Southern Market.

On a personal level, we love getting to know the employees and staff at places we regularly visit, and from a business perspective, we love promoting the good things other companies are doing. We make a point to share our experiences on social media by giving them a shout-out so our followers know about the delicious food and amazing people in our community. As a small business ourselves, we love supporting other small, local companies.

2. Promote Brand Awareness

Sometimes businesses can quietly live in a community for decades without anyone noticing or realizing the benefits they offer. Partnering with other organizations can help your business raise its profile and increase brand awareness. By networking and engaging with other businesses, you can reach new audiences and increase your brand’s visibility.

For several years, Alpha Dog has been a sponsor of the Lancaster YWCA’s Race Against Racism, a 5K race through the city to support the YWCA’s Center for Racial and Gender Equity. In 2023, our brand was featured on the race day website, packet information, and promotional materials. We also had several team members participate in the event, and we shared their experience on our social media platforms. Not only were we able to support and promote the good things a local organization was doing in the city, but we gained some brand awareness as well.

3. Generate Leads

Businesses are always looking for fresh ways to find new clients and connect with their ideal customers, and engaging with other organizations in the community can help your brand generate leads and find new opportunities. Collaborating with other respected businesses helps to establish yours as a reputable and trustworthy organization, and can increase your credibility in the eyes of potential customers and clients.

Over the years, we’ve had the privilege of connecting with other local businesses because we’ve engaged with them in the community. There’s something special about creating organic relationships with other brands because you believe in the good work they’re doing. Start by walking down your block and stopping by your neighbors’ stores. You can grow aspects of your business simply by forming natural relationships with the people in your community.

4. Access Resources & Expertise

Partnering with other organizations in the area can help you access a wealth of resources and expertise that you might not have otherwise. Your business, those you collaborate with, and the community as a whole can benefit when you share best practices and insights based on years of experience.

At Alpha Dog, we rely on local businesses for a variety of needs, from construction crews to painters and tree trimmers to caterers. We have a mutual relationship with several of our clients, trusting in their expertise for our business and sharing ours with them. Forming genuine relationships with local resources has allowed us to learn and grow as a company while supporting local businesses as well.

5. Support the Community

Engaging with other organizations allows your business to support and give back to the community. Not only does this make a positive impact locally, but it also builds goodwill and can help enhance your reputation.

Last fall, our Alpha Dog team volunteered with the Lancaster Conservancy [link to: https://www.lancasterconservancy.org/] to help clean up one of the preserves in the county by cutting down and removing multiflora rose, an invasive species. The purpose of removing the overgrown and non-native plant was to protect other wildlife in the ecosystem and allow room for future walking trails and recreational spaces.

This project was a fantastic team-bonding activity and opportunity to be in nature, but we thoroughly enjoyed supporting the Lancaster Conservancy too. They were incredibly grateful for our help and shared a photo of our group in their newsletter. We also shared our experience on social media platforms and promoted the good work the conservancy does for our community.

A few other ways Alpha Dog has supported the Lancaster community include:

ExtraGive – This annual event is Lancaster’s biggest day of philanthropic giving. Every year, each of our team members chooses a favorite local organization, and Alpha Dog makes a financial donation to support their work in the community.

Pennsylvania SPCA – We held a supply drive to support dogs in the Lancaster shelter.

Power Packs Project – Our team helped their staff sort food and pack boxes to be delivered to local students and families experiencing food scarcity.

What we’ve discovered is that connecting with local organizations isn’t just good on a business level, but it’s also good for morale. Sharing experiences outside of work-related tasks has a tendency to bring us closer together because along the way, we have meaningful conversations about life, family, friendships, and what’s happening in the world. We know we can make a difference when we engage with the people in our office and our community.

Let’s Get Connected!

One of the best ways to connect with your community is to choose a service project you’re passionate about, whether that’s supporting an animal shelter, local park, social service group, or other volunteer opportunity. At Alpha Dog, we commit to supporting a local organization twice a year through volunteering, and we support local businesses several times a month. We’re proud to be part of what Lancaster’s doing for the community, and we’re looking forward to what’s ahead. If you’d like to learn more about our agency and how we’re connecting with the local community, check out our Facebook and Instagram.

How can your business get involved in your community this year?