One of the old sayings in the pubic relations field is “Do good and then take credit for it.” HVACR contractors should take this to heart. When you do something good for the community, make sure they know about it.

If you donate your company’s time and materials to repair or replace the furnace for the family of an Iraq or Afghanistan soldier that needs assistance, write a press release and send it to your city’s local newspaper. Or if you are located in a big city, send it to your community newspaper.

If you make a sizable contribution to a charity such as Habitat for Humanity, and better yet have employees that are involved in building homes, send a news release to your local TV station or stations highlighting your company’s contribution.

If you hold a golf outing and donate the proceeds to a community food bank or to the Salvation Army, take a photo of your staff members handing over a check to one of the organization’s representatives and send it to your newspaper.

Want some examples of doing good?

Aladdin Air Conditioning & Heating Inc., a local Carrier Southern California Sales and Distribution (CSD Southern California) dealer, sponsored its local Habitat for Humanity chapter in Ventura County. The sponsorship, which included labor by Aladdin and units by CSD Southern California, helped build three homes for families in need.

Hobaica Services Inc. launched the Business Entities Getting Involved in our Neighborhood (BEGIN) Campaign. The company took its remaining advertising budget for October-December 2008 and used it to give away free home comfort systems, including installation, to deserving families.

Get involved in existing charitable programs like the Air Conditioning Contractors of America’s (ACCA’s) Heat the Country program, or Oilheat Cares, or Habitat for Humanity as Aladdin did above. Or help an elderly lady who desperately needs a new furnace, or servicemen who are employees or relatives of employees. Or start a local initiative to help poor families like Hobaica. Then be sure to send a press release to your local newspapers and local TV stations. (And don’t forget to send that press release toThe NEWSas well to publish on our “HVAC Charity Work” page.)

It’s not bad to take credit for charitable activities. It shows that you are a caring and responsible company. It doesn’t diminish what you’ve done. Also, your employees will feel good about your company’s involvement, especially if they assist in selecting, or they participate in, the causes your firm supports. In addition, promoting your company’s charitable efforts will build good will with the community-at-large and it can help you in attracting new hires.

You deserve credit for the good deeds you do. HVACR contractors as a whole deserve credit for all that they do for their communities. Generate positive media attention for your company (and for all good contractors) and help overcome the negativity created by the fly-by-night contractors who get caught in media stings.

When you do something good for your community, make sure you get the word out and take credit for it.

Before joining the editorial staff ofThe NEWSover 12 years ago, Greg Mazurkiewicz worked in public relations and advertising for more than 20 years. In this periodic series of articles, he will share some of his expertise in the field of marketing communications.

Publication date:02/02/2009