Friday, 6 November 2015

The DMO Club: Five mobile fundraising campaigns you need on your radar

You check emails on it, take photos, shop, plan journeys, check your bank balance, wake up to it and occasionally you might even use it to call your mum - we are glued to our phones.

But which charities are making best use of mobile for fundraising? At October's Direct Marketing Officers (DMO) Club * we started a list. Here are five of our favourites:

1. Touch Look Check (TLC) - Breakthrough Breast Cancer/Breast Cancer Now

We had to mention this - partly because we work on it, but partly because it really was one of the trailblazers of value exchange. You want to know the five signs of breast cancer right? Send us a text, and we will call you back to get your address to send out your free guide... Now, while we've got you on the phone...

Simple but effective, TLC hits two objectives: get health information out to the public, and bring on board new regular givers.

Initially the campaign was tested out of home (trains and washrooms). It smashed targets, and rolled out as part of business as usual activity, adding in DRTV. Three years, one merger, a new brand and a summer of discontent later and TLC is still going strong. In fact, response is better than ever before! 

It's a great combination - information people want, and a cause people care about. 

2. Mobile Membership - Diabetes UK. One to watch! 

Why have a one-off value exchange when you can have one a month? Diabetes UK have reinvigorated their existing membership product for a younger audience, rolling out a mobile version using Mobilise (regular giving by SMS).

Content from the members' magazine is going mobile, with supporters able to sign up to receive monthly updates with tips, recipes and support specific to their condition, in return for a £3 monthly donation by SMS. As standard with Mobilise, users can skip a month or stop at any time.

The product launched a few months ago and so far recruitment has been through warm lists, mainly email. But this winter the product is rolling out through GPs surgeries, to reach new audiences. Watch this space...

3. Send a net, Save a life - Christian Aid

Is this the grand daddy of text to donate? Christian Aid paired a simple, tangible ask with then-new technology of premium SMS. The charity sector has never looked back.

4. The Bee Cause - Friends of the Earth

Another pioneer of text to get fundraising, the wildflower seeds campaign showed value exchange could work not only for health charities but for other causes too.

5. Straight to Mobilise DRTV - Cancer Research UK

Cancer Research UK found a new way to put donors in the driving seat with their straight-to-mobolise DRTV advert. Cutting out the callback is an attractive proposition for donors, refreshing response rates and cutting acquisition costs. 

Do you agree or disagree? Or is there another mobile fundraising campaign that has caught your eye? Let us know in the comments, or head over to the DMO (Direct Marketing Officers) Club on LinkedIn and join in the discussion. You can find us here

Ruth Stokes & Emily Pond, DMO Club.

* The DMO (Direct Marketing Officers) Club is an informal group for direct marketing fundraisers working at officer level. As well as our LinkedIn group we meet in London every other month. 

Our next meeting will be in the evening of 25th November when we’ll be hearing from Daniel Fluskey, Head of Policy and Research at the Institute of Fundraising. Come and join us!


  1. I always believe that people in need must be treated well and we should help them.
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