AIME mobile giving eventHow can the charitable sector can leverage mobile to connect with the public and collect donations on a massive scale? We talk with Andrew Darling, Associate Director of Market Development at OpenMarket, a company providing payment and messaging services to mobile retail and commerce clients worldwide. OpenMarket is also a driving force in efforts to help charities put together the approaches and platforms that will allow them to take donations and connect with the people who give to relief efforts and causes around the world.

The benefits and the business models around mobile are the topic of Empowering the Charitable Sector with Interactive Technology II (September 15, London). The all-day knowledge seminar organized by AIME (the Association for Interactive media & Entertainment) is already standing room only (!), an unexpectedly high attendance that tells us the topic strikes a chord with charities, advertising & marketing agencies, service providers, broadcasters, industry bodies and mobile operators–all the players that need to come together and work together to maximize the potential for all kinds of charities to use mobile.

The event is a follow up to the tremendously successful inaugural event that took place in May 2010. (You can read the 2010 Empowering the Charitable Sector with Interactive Charities Event overview here.)

Mobile for good

Andrew Darling OpenMarketAndrew Darling –esteemed colleague, OpenMarket executive and Chair of the AIME event provides us with an update of the mobile/cross-media campaign by DEC (Disasters Emergency Committee) to help the millions of people in the horn of Africa suffering from the worst drought in human history. OpenMarket provides the platform and connectivity for the effort, which uses the company’s payments and CRM (Customer Relationship Management) solutions to improve the outreach by allowing the charity to connect with donors (and ultimately continue the interaction) using text messaging.

DEC kicked off the call for donations on June 7 with a massive media and advertising campaign that promoted the mobile channel for the first time, using ads on posters, TV and elsewhere to promote a shortcode. The cross-media effort paid dividends, allowing DEC to raise over GBP1 million in July alone.

But that is just the start of something bigger: ongoing relationships with donors via mobile.

“We added considerable value through our innovative use of our CRM and content management platform, which we call OpenMarket CMX2.  This is a platform which really handles the interactive messaging and adds some quite critical core intelligence functions, allowing a campaign manager a way of recognizing when a donor had made a GBP5 donation [using mobile] and sending a text message back to them thanking them for their donation and requesting them if they wanted to opt into the UK HMRC tax regulations around Gift Aid to forego the tax relief….Our response mechanism simply asked the donor to text back their full name and their postcode and this guaranteed that an extra 24 percent would be added to their donation.”

Andrew notes that other fundraising channels, including telephone and email, report responses to the Gift Aid opt-in are generally around the “25-30 percent range.” With mobile – and the addition of CRM — charities can “get this up to 60 percent, providing a very significant uplift in funds raised.”

Multi-channel matters

Integration with mobile is just part of the picture. Charities must also be aware of the central role social networks play — both in our behavior as donors and in charities’ campaigns as they embrace interactive technologies. With this in mind, OpenMarket has taken the wraps off of Mobile & Web Checkout, a custom mobile checkout solution that allows charities (and companies and merchants in all verticals to integrate mobile purchasing into a mobile app or website, allowing people to complete a mobile purchase using their web-enabled mobile devices.

“Charities have to understand that the cause is not longer insulated from the donors,” Andrew observes. The opportunity (even the requirement) for people to interact with the causes and organizers that matter to them most, turns up the pressure on charities to use interactive media and take donations via mobile, social and apps – to name a few.

Knowledge & networking Seminar

How do companies drive awareness of their SMS donation channels? How do they integrate with the likes of Facebook? How can mobile drive positive results for time-sensitive campaigns?

MobileGroove is proud to be a media partner with Charitable Sector with Interactive Technology II, and event that will look at what charities need to do and have in place to manage campaigns effectively, across multiple platforms – web, mobile, email, social media, apps.

Speakers include:

  • Michael Newsome, Director of Individual Giving, UNICEF
  • Tim Longfoot, Managing Director, Open Fundraising
  • Richard Dutton, Head of Commercial, Charities Trust
  • Angela Morris, Marketing and Commercial Manager, Jamie Oliver Foundation
  • Marcus East, CIO, Comic Relief
  • Max St John, Lead consultant, Non-profit and Public Sector, NixonMcInnes
  • Adrian Cockle, Head of Online, WWF UK
  • Linda Minnis, CEO, Charities TrustAndrew Jackson, Director, Cork and Leather
  • Oisin Lunny, Senior Market Development Manager, OpenMarket
  • Elizabeth Kessick, Head of Insight, JustGiving
  • Paul Swaddle, CEO and Founder, Pocket App
  • David Erasmus, Founder, Givey
  • Andy Burnett, Head of Operations – Interactive and ITL, ITV
  • Patrick Nash, Chief Executive, Connect Assist
  • Rob Mansell, Finance Director, Retail Trust
  • Iain Ainslie, IT Underwriter, ACE Europe
  • Paul Whiteing, CEO, PhonepayPlus
  • Erica Crump, Solicitor, Bates Wells & Braithwaite
  • Damian Collins, MP. Member of Culture, Media, Sport and the Olympics Committee
  • Rupert Lowery, CEO, Cardsave Online
  • Iain Ainslie, IT Underwriter, ACE Europe
  • Jason Cross, Marketing Director, Incentivated
  • Gareth Jones, Brand Engagement Director, LBi
  • Rosalie Kurton, Business Development Director, LBi

The event is already sold out, but the positive attendee response indicates a high level interest and activity in mobile giving — a topic that we will revisit in follow-up coverage here at MobileGroove and over at the official AIME website. You can follow on-the-spot coverage via Twitter, and the hashtag is #Techgiving. You can (and should!) also follow Andrew Darling (@darlingbuds).

With its industry reach, AIME is well positioned to be the bridge between charities, third sector representative organizations and technology providers, providing information on the value of interactive technology and how companies can move their charities from analog to digital and mobile. For more information, please visit AIME.

Listen to the podcast with Andrew Darling [16:00] here.