The Top 4 Text-to-Give Trends That Came Out of 2022
Mobile accessibility has become increasingly more important to user experience in recent years, especially during and after the COVID-19 pandemic. In 2020, online donations increased dramatically with a significant number of those donations coming from mobile devices. Today, people continue to do everything from their phones, including making donations.
Text-to-give is a fundraising method where supporters can donate by sending a text to an organization’s shortened phone number with the keyword of the campaign. The donation amount is added to the donor’s phone bill and their carrier transfers 100% of the donations to the nonprofit.
When you’re offering this donation option to supporters, consider these trendy ways to incorporate it in your existing operations:
- Giving at events
- Text-to-give marketing
- Matching gifts
- Pledge campaigns
Text-to-give is still evolving and a convenient form of mobile giving. Let’s look at the popular ways to incorporate and promote text donations.
1. Giving at events
In-person events are back, and their importance is recognized now more than ever. Nonprofit events have the power to cultivate a strong community for the organization, its supporters, and local vendors and community members who are also involved in the event.
However, virtual features are still largely important for engaging your guests at a nonprofit event after the pandemic emphasized the convenience of digital tools. Text-to-give specifically makes the donation process at in-person events easier for your supporters in the following ways:
- Availability of software: Most likely, 100% of your attendees will have a cell phone that already has a text messaging app installed. There’s no need to wait for them to download something separate or learn a new donation technique.
- Familiarity with the software: Most people use their smartphones to text daily, so there are very few instructions that have to be given to explain text-to-give.
- Efficiency: Instead of having supporters physically write a check or wait at a booth to swipe their card, text-to-give allows donors to give from their phones in seconds.
- Privacy: Phone screens can easily be kept private, even in public. Donors can contribute through a text message without anyone seeing sensitive details of their donation, like the amount or their payment method.
By offering a text-to-give option for supporters at your event, the donation process can be easier and more comfortable for your supporters. Once you’ve set up a text-to-give shortcode, promote the information before and during your event.
You can also give verbal reminders throughout the event so people don’t forget to send their text. You could briefly explain how to give, which will help you emphasize how easy it is since the instructions will be so short and straightforward.
2. Text-to-give marketing
Aside from explaining text-to-give in-person, you can also use your marketing channels to promote your text-to-give campaigns. Especially if your nonprofit is leveraging its marketing channels to raise donations, it can be beneficial to offer text-to-give as a donation method.
Consider sharing it on these channels:
- Social media: Post information and instructions frequently about text-to-give campaigns. Your supporters might contribute when they’re reminded since it’s so easy to switch between apps on their phones. Plus, sending the text would take only seconds, so your supporters could get right back to scrolling.
- Website: Highlight text-to-give information on your website for people who are looking for more information about your cause. For example, a small call-to-action at the top of your homepage could read: “Text ‘donate’ to [your nonprofit’s number] to give now!”
- Email: If your nonprofit sends out email newsletters regularly, include a section that highlights ways to give and suggests text-to-give as an easy option.
- Direct mail: Making note of text-to-give options in physical mail can bridge the gap between traditional marketing and digital tools for any of your supporters who enjoy both.
Continuous marketing encourages donor retention and recurring giving, since the message will be repeated to your donors over and over again. Plus, text-to-give can be great for giving small gifts. Your supporters are less likely to mind regularly texting to give than writing a check for a major donation.
When you retain donors and encourage recurring giving, you’ll create a community of loyal supporters. If they’re dedicated to your cause, your supporters might want to raise money on your behalf, namely by getting their friends involved with your cause.
Nearly 40% of Americans have donated to a charity because of a fundraising request from their peers or family members. Potential donors are more likely to follow their friend’s advice than your nonprofit’s marketing, so your supporters can reach people who otherwise wouldn’t have been a responsive audience to your fundraiser.
Peer-to-peer giving is a popular trend in text-to-give campaigning because it’s such an easy way to give. Your supporters don’t have to create a donation page just to ask their friends to donate. Instead, they can share your nonprofit’s shortcode by word-of-mouth or in a social media post and interested donors will take care of the rest.
4. Pledge campaigns
Virtual donor management can be difficult, but the main incentive of text-to-give is convenience. It might not be convenient for your supporters to give when you initially ask them to send the text, so you’ll need to leverage this convenience in a way that benefits your nonprofit and your donors.
Instead of giving your supporters the feeling that donating should happen either now or never, give them the option to text-to-pledge. By offering the same convenience to donors who want to commit now and give later, you’re giving your donors the flexibility they need to contribute on their own terms.
This isn’t to say that your fundraiser’s deadline should be ignored, but offer your donors plenty of ways and time to give so that your nonprofit doesn’t come across as pushy.
As text-to-give continues to grow, think about the ways it can apply to your nonprofit’s existing fundraising and marketing efforts. While convenience and familiarity are major selling points, you should still be just as committed to promoting text-to-give as you would be with any other campaign.
Find a text-to-give platform that works for your nonprofit, give your supporters basic instructions, and let the marketing do the rest of the work.
John Killoran is an inventor, entrepreneur, and the Chairman of Clover Leaf Solutions, a national lab services company. He currently leads Clover Leaf’s investment in Snowball Fundraising, an online fundraising platform for nonprofit organizations.
Snowball was one of John’s first public innovations; it’s a fundraising platform that offers text-to-give, online giving, events, and peer-to-peer fundraising tools for nonprofits. By making giving simple, Snowball increases the donations that these organizations can raise online. The Snowball effect is real! John founded Snowball in 2011. Now, it serves over 7,000 nonprofits and is the #1 nonprofit fundraising platform.