Archive | May, 2013

The simple act of giving to a nonprofit on my mobile phone has not been re-imagined until now.

20 May

 

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RAZ Mobile sites make it easy to give in the moment in about 20 seconds.

 

Computing power, a high-speed internet connection and a mobile device have been used with great success to re-imagine many industries. All one has to do is look around at what they see in their own lives that’s been re-imagined. Listing them here would be extensive and boring. We all know it’s happening to pretty much every human endeavor. I for one feel that this is making things more convenient, accessible and that it’s enhancing lives.

This is an inexorable pattern and yet one notable and sizable industry seems to have been left behind. As the 3rd largest industry in the United States, the simple act of an individual giving to a nonprofit on their mobile phone has not ben re-imagined until now.

Think of it like this. You go to a charity event and at your table are forms with many blanks and lines to complete and a bunch of furnished pens.  At some point during the evening an appeal is made to complete the forms with personal and financial information like credit card numbers or information about your checking account.

For anyone that gives this way, your completed form is put in a box, then into a car, and then keyed into a database to complete your gift at some point after the event.

The opportunity for something bad to happen to your identity is rampant. And yet for less than $1 per day it doesn’t have to be this way. Why, in today’s re-imagined world, do I have to complete the same form over and over to make a donation? Why are strangers handling my personal information?

This is one of the major reasons we created RAZ Mobile. We wanted to re-imagine giving in a way that follows the example set by leading ecommerce sites-give donors the option to give quickly when they want without the hassle of filling out forms each time they want to give. At the donor’s option, after their first gift to any cause using RAZ Mobile, they can opt to have their credentials stored securely through a PIN they create so they can be used to give to the same cause or any other cause using RAZ Mobile anytime, anywhere.

I think this is the way that donors want the act of giving to be re-imagined. No forms to complete and no checks to write, No envelopes, stamps or letters I won’t read. Give me a way to make a donation quickly and securely when I want to via the device that’s pretty much an extension of me-my mobile phone.

Do you think that if you re-imagined your giving experience to be one that works on any mobile phone and lets a donor give in seconds that this would re-imagine the future of your nonprofit? What if giving was made easier for your supporters? Might they give more often? I think the answer would be yes.

Is fundraising an event?

6 May

Is fundraising still an “event”?

The two words go well together and we’ve all heard them before. “Fundraising” plus “event” means some entertainment, some refreshments and some giving. But there’s something going on with the idea of a fundraising event that the mobile phone is set to disrupt in the same way the mobile phone has changed human interaction and just about every other behavior humans engage in.

With the meteoric rise of the mobile phone, the word event has been removed from the phrase. In the era of all things mobile, fundraising is no longer just an event.

Without pointing out the sheer ubiquity of the mobile phone, no one need be reminded of the fact that in order for us to reach each other it begins and ends with connecting to each other’s mobile phone.

So if connecting to each other in our mobile age means connecting via a mobile phone, nonprofits have to ask themselves how important is an anywhere, anytime connection to new and existing supporters. From my point-of-view it could mean survival. The fundraising event is about to be overshadowed by anytime, anywhere fundraising.

Don’t get me wrong. This doesn’t mean a constant drumbeat of asking supporters for donations. Rather what it means is a constant connection with new and existing supporters through their mobile phones wherein they can decide what they do and when they do it. Maybe they’ll watch a video you have or read a success story about your mission or maybe they’re having a great day and are just feeling generous and want a frictionless giving experience.

Fundraising in the world of all things mobile highlights the need so share your mission and your stories with them in what I call “ABC”.

Always Be Cultivating.

Large brands of all kinds are racing to figure out what mobile means to cultivating new and existing customers before their competitor figures it out first and poaches their customers. I recall a report from Compuware stating that if a person has a bad experience with your site on their mobile phone they won’t come back…..ever. And they won’t visit your brick and mortar presence either.

For nonprofits this race is no different. Like it or not, nonprofits compete on donor experience and for their attention, support, time and loyalty.

Relying on a fundraising event therefore, in our mobile world of anywhere, anytime could present a mountain-sized challenge since mobile makes fundraising more cultivation than event. Available to any nonprofit is an ongoing connection to new and existing supporters through their mobile phones.

Keep the events going but don’t just add mobile to your events and then leave mobile on the shelf not working for you when it can be used all the time as your ultimate cultivation vehicle.

Our phones are with us all the time and any nonprofit can be engaging and fundraising with anyone all the time too. You just can’t do this with a fundraising event.

Go mobile. Reach new and existing supporters anywhere, anytime. Let them learn more about the good things you’re doing and give them an easy way to give in the moment.

Always Be Cultivating.

The mobile donor of today could be the next person down the road that leaves you their estate.