How to Set Up Donations Through Text

When it comes to raising money, you might be tempted to focus mostly on large contributions from foundations or corporations because you think these organizations give the most to charity. But they don't (in our previous post, we explode some myths surrounding the large corporate donor).

The truth is, it is more likely that most of your donations will come from ordinary people who cannot give a lot but want to help with that they can. Nevertheless, those little donations add up. Think about it: Do you want 3 large corporate donors that make you jump through hoops and take months to close? Or would you prefer 1,000 Average Joes giving $10 or $20/mo and who will be your brand evangelists to their friends and family?

Donating through text messages is an easy way for the average Joe to help out an organization or cause of their choice. Learning how to set up donations through text for your own cause is easy, too!

Why is the ability to donate through a text message so popular? As money gets increasingly more digital, most people aren’t carrying around cash on them. Plus, just about everyone in the U.S. who is at least 14 years of age has a cell phone. Donating by sending a single text is also quick, doesn’t require any confusing steps, and can be done immediately. Gaining the ability to receive text donations gives fundraising a huge boost.

Setting Up Your Text Donation Service

So, you’re sold. It’s time to set up a text-to-donate service. Do you know how to set up donations through text? It seems confusing. And in part, it is. That’s why it’s best to go through an organization that sets everything up for you. That's where we come in. We help non-profits raise more money with less effort by providing them with mobile giving technology. 

After selecting a service to help you set your donation line up, you need to actually register your short code (5-digit phone number) with a mobile service provider. We do this for you and lease out our short code to you. You'll also need a keyword to trigger the donation sequence, make the keyword something short, easy to spell, and easy to remember. For example, if you’re raising money to help spotted owls, make the code something like: BIRDS or OWLS. Your keyword must be at least 4 characters long.

Promoting Your Text to Give Campaign

Finally, once everything is all set up and ready to be released to the world, you need a strategy to rock at promoting it. Social media, posters, or any existing advertising methods you already use for your charity will work perfectly. Make sure it’s also listed on the home page of your website for easy access. Typically, charities will advertise at functions or events alongside with appealing to larger contributors. However, you don’t need to spend a lot of money to get your campaign donation code out there. Be creative!