‘Tis the Season for Giving: How to Use Text-to-Give Programs for Effective Mobile Fundraising

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Donating your hard-earned money is a highly personal and emotional decision, and nonprofits developing fundraising programs should be cognizant of this. Instead of spamming potential or past donors with cold donation requests, they should focus instead on telling a story and building a relationship.

Although this strategy can apply across all marketing channels, it’s especially important with texts. Soliciting donations in the same place people chat with their friends and loved ones can feel invasive if your message and strategy aren’t carefully crafted.

Here’s our advice on how to effectively start a text-to-give campaign and begin raising money anytime, anywhere.

1.Choose the best texting software provider. The software you choose can make or break your text donation strategy. If you opt for a short-code, you eliminate the possibility of two-way conversations and could even miss out on donations. If you choose a mass-texting platform, you run the risk of being punished for spam. Activating your existing phone number has tremendous brand value. Your donors can text you using the number they already know.

2.Build an opt-in list. There’s nothing worse for your fundraising efforts than spamming people asking for money. Not only is it illegal, but it’s ineffective. In order to effectively (and legally) reach your audience, you need to create a list of people who have agreed to receive texts from you. In order to get people to opt-in, you should be offering them something in return – like a donation match – it’s all about building a valuable, lasting relationship with donors.

3.Promote your fundraising campaign. We have good news: If you text enable your existing phone number, you don’t have to spend hundreds of dollars advertising a new number or educating your audience on the difference between the two. All you have to do is tell your donors that they can now text the same number they already call. Use your other marketing channels to encourage people to text in a keyword like “GIVE” to receive a donation link. With Zipwhip, you can set up Keywords and write Auto Replies that trigger any time someone texts them.

4.Continue the dialogue after the donation. This is perhaps the most crucial piece of a successful text-to-donate campaign. Your interaction with donors shouldn’t end as soon as they give money. You should always work on fostering these relationships because people who donate once are highly likely to donate again. In fact, recurring donation campaigns are very popular among younger demographics – roughly 40 percent of millennial donors are enrolled in a monthly giving program. As your nonprofit grows and compelling stories sprout from your efforts, share those with your donors. Let them know the impact of every dollar they donate.

For donors, giving through text is easy, convenient and fast. For nonprofits, it’s affordable, efficient and effective. Contact us today to learn more about how you can start using text donations to boost your mobile fundraising efforts.

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