Hope you had a great Halloween!  This morning as I removed my Denver Post newspaper from the plastic bag it was delivered in, I noticed that instead of the usual orange bag, today it was white.  As I smoothed out the bag, I saw the Season to Share logo as seen to the left and the website address so I looked closer.

Season to Share is the giving program of the Denver Post and the McCormick Education Fund.   The bad said in bold letters across the top, “Giving more together.  Every dollar donated is matched with 50 cents.  Look for the special Season to Share section in today’s paper or visit www.SeasontoShare.com.”

On the front page of the Denver Post main section, in the prime space above the crease, there was a small block “teaser” article “A Way That You Can Help.”  “Season to Share, The Denver Post’s annual campaign to help children and those who are hungry, homeless or in need of medical care, kicks off today.  Learn more about the program and how to donate in our 12-page special section.”

The Season to Share special section had articles about various nonprofit beneficiaries and the work they do in the community, as well as a list of each of the 74 organizations they supported through Season to Share.  In 2008, the “Denver Post Season to Share distributed a record $3,341,500 to 74 local nonprofit organizations.”  The list included the amount each organization received as well as 1-2 sentences about the primary focus of the nonprofit.  I really liked that they did not just list the names of the organization.  Offering the brief summaries of each organization allows readers to learn about organizations they might not be familiar with – perhaps helping generate additional community support in the future for each organization.  At the bottom of the list it said, “ Learn about Season to Share, find stories about and links to agencies applying for funding, and donate denverpost.com/seasontoshare.”

I appreciate the way the newspaper kicked off this campaign.  By giving it a very high profile in their Sunday edition of the newspaper, the Denver Post accomplished several things simultaneously.  First, they offered their customers a way to join forces with them to jointly make a larger difference and “made the ask” for their support.  Second, while asking for customer support, they are also educating the community at large about their efforts and support of nonprofits, thus strengthening their reputation and cementing reader loyalty. Third, because of how they constructed their special section, they also leveraged their unique business expertise to support the nonprofits they funded last year that could prove to be of even greater long-term value than just the actual dollar amounts awarded — they helped increase the visibility and awareness of the mission/programming of each the 74 nonprofits they selected to fund in the community among their readership – hopefully synergizing a snowball effect of future support of each of the organizations from individuals and other businesses.

Nicely done!