Customized Girl has raised more than $7,000 for the Stefanie Spielman Fund for Breast Cancer Research.
Customized Girl is just one of several custom apparel websites run by eRetailing, whose proprietary design center allows customers to add their own text, art, and images to apparel and accessories.
“Customized Girl is obviously a female-oriented business and we think raising funds for breast cancer research is a perfect fit,” says Jeff Benzenberg, director of new development for eRetailing. “Our business and our employees are all located here in Columbus, and the name Stefanie Spielman means a lot to us.”
During the month of October, customers were given a code to use during checkout that offered them free shipping and donated ten percent of their order to the Spielman Fund. The company promoted the fundraising program via its website and email and through Facebook and Twitter campaigns.
The program was developed in-house and the company approached the Spielman Fund after raising the funds. While this was Customized Girl’s first major fundraising event, the company plans on making it an annual event each October and may adjust the discount customers receive for entering the code.
The inspiration for developing the program came from a customer whose baby brother was diagnosed with liver cancer. Customized Girl gave her a gift card to help her make custom shirts to help raise awareness The success of her efforts encouraged Customized Girl to step up its philanthropic efforts.
“After that, we decided we needed to be more active in fundraising and organized our breast cancer fundraiser this October,” Benzenberg says.
Though Customized Girl raises funds for the Spielman Fund and offers gift cards to nonprofits so they can create custom apparel, the company is looking to create new opportunities to work with female-oriented nonprofits.
Customized Girl is currently exploring the ability for nonprofits to create storefronts on its website. Customized Girl would handle customer service, print the order on demand, and provide shipping.
“The nonprofit would simply need to sign up and add a few designs to their storefront. If they like, we’d be happy to help add a few designs, too,” Benzenberg says.
Customized Girl hopes to have storefronts available this year. The company also plans to begin working with the Spielman Fund earlier in the year to gain additional input on how they can work together.
For businesses looking to be philanthropic, Benzenberg recommends companies just go for it.
“If you’re an online retail store like we are, it’s super simple,” he says. “There are many ways to make it work. A special promo code just happened to be the right way for us.”
Philanthropic Pursuit is a monthly feature on The Metropreneur, powered by Community Shares of Mid Ohio. Is your business giving back to the community or partnering with a local nonprofit in a unique way? We want to hear about it. Contact Ryan Kovalaske at [email protected].