Heart of Giving Blog: What is Mobile Giving?

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calendar icon Sep 14, 2021

In recent years, technological innovation has become an integral aspect of philanthropy. Simple and efficient methods of giving—especially through text message—have energized donors and fundraising campaigns alike. An instrumental force behind this era of mobile generosity, Jim Manis pioneered text-to-give, an instant process allowing supporters to donate to charities, nonprofits, and other organizations via text. As founder of the Mobile Giving Foundation, Manis has applied his considerable experience in the telecom industry to new mobile solutions for social good. This Heart of Giving episode explores the three key advantages of mobile donations:

Facilitating Impulse Giving: The text-to-give strategy has empowered organizations to grow their donor base, especially during times of crisis or disaster. Jim Manis first envisioned a text-to-give campaign in the tragic aftermath of the 2004 Indonesian tsunami. Since then, the text-to-give solution has helped fueled the charitable response to the COVID-19 pandemic, as when Boys & Girls Clubs of America raised hundreds of thousands of dollars to continue funding school lunch programs. These results provide a call to action to many nonprofits. How can your charitable initiatives align with current social issues?

Ensuring Mobile Security: Trustworthy standards are essential for mobile giving. Donors need to feel confident that their personal information is safe and that their contribution will reach the intended source. Manis’s Mobile Giving Foundation, a third-party service that facilitates donations through users’ phone bills, follows stringent compliance rules. No personal data is transmitted during the process, and individuals must give charities permission to provide further content. How can nonprofits communicate high standards of transparency and accountability during text-to-give campaigns?

Advocating for Innovation: Mobile communications is a competitive and rapidly changing industry. Since the lifespan of this technology can be short, Mobile Giving Foundation keeps pace with new messaging platforms and how they change user preferences. As messaging and transactional capabilities expand, priorities may change for donors in different age groups. This shift not only drives Mobile Giving Foundation’s efforts to prepare for technological change as it occurs, but also offers an exciting new challenge to thought leaders in the philanthropic space. Are your fundraising efforts tailored to the technological needs of a broad audience? Who are your partners for achieving this objective? To learn more about mobile donations, listen to this episode of the Heart of Giving podcast here.

This article was composed by Emily Hershman. 

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