November 18, 2017
 
Mobile-Based Fundraising Grows after Haiti Earthquake

March 8, 2010 — Mobile philanthropy, while not universally accepted, is gaining traction with younger generations and the text-to-gift efforts around Haiti could be the tipping point for greater adoption, according to a new study.

"The data presented not only shows the growing acceptance of mobile charity appeals, but also provides some interesting statistics on the contrasting habits of different generations," said Pam Loeb, Principal at Edge Research, a marketing research firm that conducted the research for Convio, which helps nonprofit organizations raise funds.

"Mobile technology presents a huge opportunity for nonprofits that want to reach specific groups of people—likely to be younger—and provide them with information in a convenient and immediate format."

The national survey of U.S. charitable donors was conducted one week after the earthquake in Haiti, and during intense fundraising efforts for emergency relief. The mobile philanthropy results are part of a larger study that will be released soon on the contrasting charitable habits of Gen Y, Gen X, Baby Boomers and Matures to provide the sector with insights on cultivating the next generation of American donors. To

Following are key findings from the survey:
  • 77% of respondents were aware of the Haiti text-to-donate efforts.
  • 17% of Gen Y respondents and 14% of Gen X said they made a donation to Haiti relief efforts via text message, and 3% of both Boomer and Mature respondents reported making a donation to Haiti relief efforts via text message.
  • 28% of respondents with a mobile Facebook application texted a gift.
  • G36% of all respondents were willing to donate via text message after an emergency occurs and 31% were willing to donate via text message if a friend is raising money.
  • 3% of donors say that they received a text/SMS message from their top charities this year.
  • 71% of those who have received information from a top charity through text/SMS, feel that it is an important way to stay in touch with the charities they care about.
"Previous to the earthquake little more than $1 million had been raised via mobile text but in the aftermath close to $50 million has now been raised through this channel, and represents another way for charities to engage with current and prospective donors, advocates and volunteers,” said Vinay Bhagat, founder and chief strategy officer at Convio.

“The nature of SMS/text messaging is instant, convenient and has a multiplier effect when used with social networking tools, and we saw all of those benefits reinforced after the earthquake struck."

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