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Text Donors Get Creative for Sandy Victims

DENVER, Nov. 16, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- No surprise that text donations flow steadily to help recovery from Super Storm Sandy.  Mobile is the fastest, easiest, most secure channel to use when donating to any cause, especially for disaster relief.  Surprising is the personalized, fervent nature with which people are donating through mobile for Sandy victims—mobile tactics never seen before in text-to-give campaigns.

Search 90999 (Red Cross's short code for text donations) or #Sandy on Twitter to see a plethora of customized calls to action from everyday philanthropists.  Those tweeting about Sandy donations aren't professional fundraisers or marketing gurus. They are doctors, or students, or utility workers who are causing a viral movement.

 "We received 20,000 voice mails during the 2009 Haiti campaign from leery donors who wanted to ensure text giving was legitimate," said Jenifer Snyder, executive director of The mGive Foundation, processing 85 percent of all text donations for many causes, not just disasters. "Back then, more savvy mobile users would simply retweet the Red Cross text messages."

"Today, no leery calls, just confidence in mobile donations," added Snyder. "Everyone knows mGive helped make the mobile philanthropy channel secure. Text contributions are so accepted, donors aren't hesitant. They're making their own emotional appeals, complete with customized graphics."

Sandy victim Kayla, developed her own photo collage of Sandy devastation in her town. https://twitter.com/LousCuppaTea/status/263794674421092352 She tweeted the poignant photos out with an appeal to text donations to the Red Cross in support of her neighbors.

Clever retailers are using give-to-get incentives through social media to increase Red Cross donations. https://twitter.com/EatDrinkCentral/status/264402791739584512 Central Bistro and Bar, in Denver, CO, is offering a free drink to any patron who shows their text donation confirmation message.  Their social media graphic is complete with terms and conditions of mobile giving.

Companies like Verizon use social media, encouraging customers to text donations to the Red Cross.  Posts from the company on Twitter and its Facebook and news center page, say the company will match text donations to the Red Cross up to $1 million.  So far, Verizon, its customers and employees have pledged more than $5.9 million to support hurricane relief efforts.  http://news.verizonwireless.com/news/2012/11/verizon-hurricane-sandy-text-donations.html]

"Surveys show text messages are opened 97 percent of the time in under 15 minutes," said Snyder.  "The Sandy campaign shows that texting isn't just prevalent, but a means to change the world, one message at a time."

Contact: Andrea Schafer, (303)981-9000

SOURCE The mGive Foundation

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