Archive | January, 2015

Experimentation is not a four-letter word

28 Jan

lab

Back in the early 2000s I was the TV guy at Sprint.

If you recall, the early 2000s there was no Facebook, no smartphones and really not much of a mobile internet. Data speeds were woeful at 144kbps.

But there I was working (with skeptics all around me) on getting mobile phones to play video and live TV. Experimentation was required. No one had really any idea how the wireless networks would behave, how consumers would use TV and video on their phones or if anyone even wanted video on their phone. We had to, and did, try everything and watched what happened.

We had 4 TV products in market and were trying all kinds of content to see what resonated with our customers. On a daily basis, I analyzed the market and refined the business of TV on phones. In 2005 I was rewarded for my experimentation with an Emmy Award in engineering for putting live TV on phones.

Fast forward to the current day and TV and video on phones is so, well, early 2000s.

The point that I am making is that the mobile internet has figuratively turned the world upside down and many smart people and large brands are having trouble adjusting. To survive and thrive the unfolding mobile computing wave, experimentation must be embraced.

I know this is hard for the nonprofit space to embrace. Failure can lead to ridicule and mis-spent funds. Donors, supporters and staff alike may revolt. And yet experimentation must be embraced.

Think of it in terms of what’s ahead. The phone is replacing the PC as the primary internet access device. This trend will not end. Older donors (aka Boomers) are soon to be replaced by the largest cohort of younger donors (aka 80 million Millennials). But the fact remains-all generations love easy, frictionless giving.

So before it really matters now is the time to experiment and learn. Don’t say “our donors are older and won’t give on their phones”. That dear reader is a total cop-out. If the Chronicle of Philanthropy says that BILLIONS OF DOLLARS are being left untapped without mobile giving options TODAY, one cannot say that it’s the donors age causing it.

Moreover, the biggest reason people haven’t given via their phone is THEY HAVEN”T BEEN ASKED!

All nonprofits need to start asking so that they can learn what works.

And they need to start asking themselves these kinds of questions:

  • What’s the best way to enable mobile giving at an event?
  • How many people give on their phone after reading our appeal email?
  • What mobile giving options can we add to our direct mail?
  • Can our board benefit from having a link to share with prospective givers via their phone?
  • Are there businesses and organizations that we can empower to make the ask on our behalf via social media?

There are dozens more questions in addition to the few above that need to be answered at all nonprofits and just as it was when I launched TV at Sprint-the only way to get answers is to experiment.

Failing is not failure if in the process you learn something new. Mobile is new and taking the place of the PC. Mastering what works could make a world of difference to your nonprofit sooner than you think.

Dale Knoop is part of a great team working to make RAZ Mobile a great platform for any cause engaged in fundraising. Any cause can create an content-rich mobile presence, share it through text messages, social media, QR codes, advertising and more and best of all-quickly and securely process donations from motivated supporters. Dale holds multiple patents and applications for patent in the mobile space including advertising, content optimization, geo-targeting, negative QOS and a mnemonic device QR code alternative.

Report: Mobile Traffic Has Increased 112% in the Past Year as Desktop Continues to Decline

21 Jan

skava

The great folks over at Skava reported in the fourth quarter via their blog something that we’ve blogged about here and it’s a finding that should come as no surprise to anyone who’s been paying attention to internet trends: the internet is fast becoming a mobile landscape.

Here’s a great quote from their report:

Mobile web accounts for 85% of total traffic for retailers, dominating mobile apps’ 15% share. Revenue numbers reflected this pattern, with 90% generated from online purchases made via mobile web and 10% made through apps.

This is not the first time anyone has reported on this topic-the mobile web taking over the PC as the main traffic driver on the internet. And yet in the for-profit world and especially the nonprofit world, even if a course to mobile has been charted, the engines are set to “Dawdle” speed.

Why is this? Confusion in the market place? Sure. There will be always be confusion in the early stages of a market shift and there is a lack of knowledge available without an expert’s price tag required to get the knowledge. (Here at RAZ Mobile, we dispense mobile internet knowledge for free on a daily basis. Give us a call or send us an email.)

But even with the confusion in the marketplace, there is a BIG incentive to change your pace from “Dawdle” to something more accelerated. How about accelerating to “Brisk”?

The singular reason I see for moving faster with your nonprofit’s mobile plan is what we are seeing firsthand at RAZ Mobile.

Things like:

  • $100 average donation per donor
  • 1 in 4 donors storing their credit card info for repeat gifts in seconds
  • Easy and effective event giving

With data like this from Skava an argument can be easily made to say that while consumers are racing to move their internet lives to their phone and away from the PC, the same pace is not present in the nonprofit world or in reality even the for-profit world. Both are unfortunately Dawdling in embracing great, optimized mobile experiences. The effects are measured in negative financial outcomes.

The reality is that “Dawdle” is costing you donations for each and every day you go without a frictionless giving experience on any screen. Accelerating your mobile plan to “Brisk” means stopping the losses and embracing what Skava reported above. The mobile phone is taking over the internet.

The mobile phone, each day, week, month, grows in its trend of replacing the PC. Just as direct mail is melting away, so will the PC as the primary online giving channel.

The good news is everyone’s got a phone and the giving results we’re seeing for our customers means accelerating your efforts to brisk and delivering a frictionless giving experience on an phone, tablet or PC will pay off big time.

Dale Knoop is part of a great team working to make RAZ Mobile a great platform for any cause engaged in fundraising. Any cause can create an content-rich mobile presence, share it through text messages, social media, QR codes, advertising and more and best of all-quickly and securely process donations from motivated supporters. Dale holds multiple patents and applications for patent in the mobile space including advertising, content optimization, geo-targeting, negative QOS and a mnemonic device QR code alternative.

Here’s a great way to serve mobile searchers

14 Jan

We’ve written here in our blog many times about the rise of mobile traffic on the internet, how mobile is becoming the preferred internet access device and how Google is now scrutinizing how your website/domain treats mobile visitors. The Google mobile-bot is always looking to see what kind of experience you offer mobile searchers and visitors. Is it a PC site or is it mobile-optimized?

(Notice I did not say “mobile-friendly”. That term is so broad in its implementation from what I have seen that you could park an aircraft carrier in it! LOL!)

So here at RAZ Mobile we are always on the lookout for great ways our customers are serving mobile searchers and visitors. Before the holiday we found one.

Look at the prominent mobile site link that Alphapointe.org has placed on their home page.

alpha

This is a great example of serving mobile searchers and one that all nonprofits could use. It’s one way among many ways nonprofits can choose from to serve mobile searchers and visitors. Serving them is no longer an option. If you don’t they may not come back or connect with you ever.

Throughout 2015 more data will be shared by many sources pointing to the need to serve mobile searchers with a great experience. Mobile is becoming the internet.

Add to this an easy way to give in seconds on any screen (like we offer) and you have a strategy for your nonprofit that is fully optimized for today and well into the future.

Dale Knoop is part of a great team working to make RAZ Mobile a great platform for any cause engaged in fundraising. Any cause can create an content-rich mobile presence, share it through text messages, social media, QR codes, advertising and more and best of all-quickly and securely process donations from motivated supporters. Dale holds multiple patents and applications for patent in the mobile space including advertising, content optimization, geo-targeting, negative QOS and a mnemonic device QR code alternative.

3 easy, powerful things for your nonprofit to launch in 2015

7 Jan

Hello! And Happy New Year!

I hope you are like us-very excited about what 2015 holds for nonprofits, mobile engagement and fundraising and excited to be helping all those in need, whatever their need may be.

2015 promises to be like 2014 with regard to mobile phones becoming the first and increasingly, only device used to go on the internet.

Look at it this way. If the online channel is the only one growing in terms of giving and its being “taken over” by the mobile phone, then you have to ask yourself: “Is 2015 the year we give our mobile supporters and mobile visitors to our website a great mobile experience or are we just going to keep using a site designed for a PC?”

So, (drum roll not required LOL) without further delay, we give you the:

3 easy, powerful things for your nonprofit to launch in 2015!!

NUMBER 1 – Add mobile giving options to your business card

We’ve written about this one before and it’s worth repeating at the start of a new year since it’s SO EASY and SO EFFECTIVE!

UW card

Look at this card and now envision your own business card that you hand out all the time having an easy way for the person(s) you’re with to give right then and there.

Even better as the United Way card shows, create event-specific cards for each of your events. Hand them out, place them in chairs and then have the event presider suggest throughout the event to take the card you have and make a gift now with their phone.

The United Way did an amazing job with this card and ALL nonprofits should follow their thought leadership with this future-proof tactic.

NUMBER 2 – Add mobile giving options to your email template(s)

If I had a dollar for every email from a nonprofit that I read over the 2014 holiday season that I opened and that had a teeny tiny “Donate” link that led me to a giving experience designed for a PC I’d have too much money to stuff in my mattress!!!

Seriously, 2015 will be a continuation of the trend of email being opened first on a mobile device. Give your supporters that open your email on their phone the ability to make a gift immediately while they are “in the moment”. This means no PC giving experiences allowed for mobile phones.

PC giving experiences on mobile phones are costing your nonprofit donations.

NUMBER 3 – Launch on RAZ Mobile. There’s NO contract so what do you have to lose?

Okay, I saved the sales “pitch” to last but we feel compelled to share the fact that we have customers raising tens of thousands each month (in some cases in a day) via our (AWESOME!) frictionless giving on any phone, tablet or PC.

And the average donation per donor is about $100! What’s not to love about that?

And, as mentioned above, with no contract you can try RAZ Mobile and not break the bank like you would with building an app or paying a developer to re-create all the wonderful features we have to offer.

I’ve been “doing” mobile and building mobile services for 15 years now. Mobile was a big topic in the nonprofit space in 2014 and 2015 will be even more of the same.

Please reach out to us and let us help you have a mobile-licious 2015!

Dale Knoop is part of a great team working to make RAZ Mobile a great platform for any cause engaged in fundraising. Any cause can create an content-rich mobile presence, share it through text messages, social media, QR codes, advertising and more and best of all-quickly and securely process donations from motivated supporters. Dale holds multiple patents and applications for patent in the mobile space including advertising, content optimization, geo-targeting, negative QOS and a mnemonic device QR code alternative.