7 Things Businesses Can Do Now to Support the Ice Bucket Challenge

Have you heard of the Ice Bucket Challenge? I thought so. Here are seven ways businesses can ACT NOW to support the challenge and raise money to fight ALS!

Make a Cash Donation

People claim that companies don't donate enough money. They're also complaining that the Ice Bucket Challenge is wasting a lot of water and not raising a lot of money. Companies can correct two misconceptions at once. 

Here's a challenge for when you make your donation. Donate to a local organization that supports ALS patients and caregivers. Identify and support the ones in your community.

Last week, I discovered one right here in Boston. The ALS Therapy Development Institute. I had never heard of them. But the Ice Bucket Challenge gave me the opportunity to meet and to learn more about their mission.

Resource: Visit Guidestar for a Listing of ALS Nonprofits in Your Area

Donate a Percentage of Sales

Convenience store chain Cumberland Farms is using its 600 locations to challenge customers to take the Ice Bucket Challenge. The company is donating 20 cents from every bag of ice purchased to the ALS Association from now through Labor Day. 

What do you sell that could raise money for the challenge?

Can you make your ice cream stores the official celebration post-challenge spot? You can donate 50 cents from every cone sold to an ALS organization.

If you own a car wash, can you entice drivers to give their car the ice bucket challenge?

Whatever your business is, incorporate the challenge into your products and services. But do it now!

Resource: 135 Examples of POS fundraisers

Match Employee Donations

While taking the Ice Bucket Challenge is great, raising money to fight ALS is even better. Encourage your employees to take the plunge AND donate - and offer to match their donations.

Resource: 8 Examples of Matching Donations

Raise Money at the Register

Not every business wants to ask customers to donate to a cause. Customers get confused and ask "What are you asking me to donate to?" But asking customers to give to ALS and the Ice Bucket Challenge will be the easiest ask you ever made. Customers will know what you're talking about and will be happy to give a buck or two.

Resource: The Lazy Fundraiser's Guide to Raising Six Figures This Fall

Support a Hashtag Fundraiser

All the social networks are spinning with the hashtag #IceBucketChallenge. Offer to make a donation every time a hashtag is used for a few minutes, an hour or a day or longer. Turn your customers and employees loose on their favorite social networks.

One thing. Be sure to set a limit on how much you plan to donate. You don't want to learn this lesson the hard way.

"Over the next hour, XYZ Company will donate $1 - up to $25,000 - for each time the hashtag #ALSIceBucketChallenge is used on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. "

Resources: Fundraising with Hashtags, 45 Examples of Hashtag Fundraisers

Dress-Down for the Ice Bucket Challenge

You've probably heard of dress-down days for charity. People pay to dress-down or up or to wear their favorite sports gear. Encourage employees to donate to dress as if they were taking the challenge. A dress down day could include completing the challenge at the end of the workday in the company parking lot!

Resource: 13 Examples of Dress Down/Up Fundraisers

Have Some Fun

This week, set some time aside for your employees to hit the streets to take the Ice Bucket Challenge for people who are happy to donate for a substitute to do what they haven't!

Resource: Sweet! Agency Hits the Streets to Raise Money for Food Bank

Looking for other ideas on how nonprofits and businesses can raise money for the Ice Bucket Challenge? Check out my book for 45 proven fundraising strategies.