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Mobile giving gains momentum

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Mobile giving is becoming more popular among younger generation and may reached a turning point with a flood of giving by text message in the wake of the Haiti earthquake, a new survey says.

Conducted the week after the quake and released by Convio, Edge Research and Sea Change Strategies, the survey says nearly $50 million has been raised through mobile texting in the aftermath of the quake, compared to just over $1 million before the quake.

“Mobile technology presents a huge opportunity for nonprofits that want to reach specific groups of people – likely to be younger – and provide them with information in a convenient and immediate format,” says Pam Loeb, principal at Edge Research.

The survey says 77 percent of U.S. donors who responded were aware of the Haiti text-to-donate efforts, and that 17 percent of Generation Y respondents and 14 percent of Generation X respondents gave to Haiti relief efforts through text-messing, compared to 3 percent of boomer and Mature respondents.

Twenty-eight percent of respondents with a mobile Facebook application texted a gift.

In general, the survey says, 36 percent of all respondents are willing to donate by text message after an emergency occurs, and 31 percent are willing to donate by text message if a friend is raising money.

Three percent of donors say they received a text or SMS message from their top charities this year, and 71 percent of those receiving those messages say it is an important way to stay in touch with the charities they care about.

Text giving “represents another way for charities to engage with current and prospective donors, advocates and volunteers,” Vinay Bhagat, founder and chief strategy officer at Convio, says in the statement.

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