Mobile marketing strategies used for commercial purposes can be equally effective in the non-profit and charity sector. Natural disasters and other emergency situations call for precisely the sort of instant response facilitated by texting, which is why charities and aid organizations all over the world are leveraging the power of SMS to generate awareness as well as monetary donations.
Earlier this year, World Vision used a typical mobile advertising strategy in the run-up to the Chicago marathon. They implemented a text program to inspire athletes preparing for the race, and found that those who got involved ultimately raised 50% more money than those who didn't. The informal messages allowed runners and spectators alike to share their experiences of participating in the fundraiser. In one instance, World Vision issued a message asking trainees to tell them how many runs they had completed that week. Those that hadn't run at all received the following message:
“Training is tough, but you can do it. Jump back into the training plan, and take it one day at a time.”
Another great application of common mobile marketing trends for charitable purposes was achieved by the Red Cross, during the 2010 Haiti earthquake. The organization launched a donate-by-text program, heavily promoted by the US government and on social media. According to a Pew internet report conducted in the aftermath of the appeal, half of all donors went on to encourage their friends and family to donate, and 76% of those people ultimately contributed money via text message. It was a classic mobile advertising strategy: get an informal message out to x amount of people, and rely on word-of-mouth to do the rest. The same happened after Hurricane Sandy. Nearly a million dollars was donated to the fund solely by text message
But why are mobile marketing solutions so effective for fundraising? In part, it's the payment process itself that appeals to people. By donating money via text instead of credit card, the transaction is made significantly easier, with less of the attendant stress regarding fraud, and just a lot less hassle. People tend to regard text costs as money already spent, so if they can put it towards a good cause, all the better. The convenience of the medium is perfect for generous people who feel they don't have time to fill in online forms, or send checks through the mail.
Finding the right time to ask for money is crucial to the success of such campaigns. According to recent statistics, Fridays and Mondays are the most rewarding times of the week. It's also important to stay in touch with users; give them regular updates about your charity's work so they can stay informed. By looking at successful mobile strategies for small business ventures, and adapting them to your fundraising appeal, you can achieve better results than for-profit companies can dream of. Look into starting your own mobile marketing strategies for charity fundraisers, and start making a real difference.