By James V. D’Ambrosio

A study recently commissioned by the mGive Foundation — an organization making it make easier for nonprofits to execute effective mobile-giving campaigns — and researched and written by CCS Fund-Raising, an agency providing fund-raising consulting and management services to nonprofits worldwide, concluded that mobile giving is a growing, viable fund-raising strategy, especially among the 16-33 age group.

The Text Giving Donor Survey Report surveyed 23,500 donors by text messaging donor mailing lists from 200+ nonprofits with ‘opt-in’ mobile number records. Over a two-week period — December 16-29, 2010 — 235 responses were generated, a one (1) percent response rate. Some key findings were:

♦ 56 percent of respondents described their text-giving experience as ‘excellent’ or ‘good.’

62 percent of respondents donate to two or more organizations via text; 12 percent contributed to four or more organizations.

79 percent of survey respondents giving to an organization via text also contributed by e-mail, Web site, or direct mail.

86 percent of survey respondents donating to an agency via text would consider giving larger amounts through other channels.

Text donors would like to have the option of a $25 text-gift minimum. In terms of a maximum text gift, 73 percent indicated a $25 limit; 15 percent said $50; and 9 percent indicated a top gift of $100.

The top three calls to action were: a) e-mail; b) public event; and c) television.


These numbers are impressive, but they should be considered contextually. The majority of respondents were Millenials (ages 16-33) followed by Generation X (34-44) and Boomers2 (45-55) — early adopters more connected with mobile communication. Since technology is evolving rapidly, the authors note uncertainty over whether such trends will continue. The study also emphasizes that text-giving represents just one facet of a comprehensive fund-raising strategy, not a substitute for other giving venues.

Still, given the economic challenges facing nonprofits for the foreseeable future, this growing channel of giving should not be ignored; in fact, some agencies can greatly benefit.

Request a copy of the full report here:

QUESTION TO READERS: What has been your agency’s experience with text-giving?

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