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The Facebook ‘On this Day’ feature reminded me last week of this blog from July 2012, where James announced the launch of Mobilise – our regular giving by PSMS platform.

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I can’t believe that it’s five years since we launched! In that time nearly 350,000 donors have been recruited and they’ve given close to £15 million pounds.

 

In its first month we paid out £9 to the first charity on board. That was Tim, Fiona and me signing up for £3 a month! I’m still giving. Can’t speak for the other two :).

 

Last month we paid out close to £500,000 to the 30+ active Mobilise clients.

 

I’m really proud of the growth of Mobilise as a fundraising tool. Every year since we launched Mobilise the charities that use it have between them recruited more Mobilise donors than the previous year. The most donors recruited in a single month was close to 19,000 and 1,700 is the most donors we’ve ever seen recruited in a single day.

 

When we first launched Mobilise it’s fair to say that telemarketing was the place where most donors were recruited as a ‘drop ask’ in a conversion call. But as our sector has changed, so has the way in which Mobilise donors have been recruited, with clients recruiting direct to Mobilise rather than converting PSMS donors. 2016 was the first year in which more donors were recruited on TV than all other channels combined. And 2017 is seeing the continued importance of TV, with digital recruitment sources fast becoming important to our Mobilise clients.

 

We have worked with our clients to do so much with the platform, whether that’s trialling regular giving for the DEC, creating products for Diabetes UK or integrating a Mobilise offer into Stand Up to Cancer activity for CRUK.

 

And we’ve learnt so much along the way about how donors interact with content. I think it’s fair to say that in the beginning we got it wrong and tried to reflect offline/print communications in the content we sent donors – which is the entirely the wrong thing to do. Donors want light, bite-sized bits of content with clear signposting to more information if they want it. It’s no more complicated than that.

 

Mobilise is all about the power of fusing payment, control and content into your mobile phone. Which is why we’ve been working so hard recently with our colleagues at Open Mobile Global to add in additional payment options all controlled via your mobile: credit & debit cards, PayPal, Apple Pay and, coming soon, Direct Debit.

 

The future is far more exciting that the past. We continue to be obsessed by the potential of the mobile phone for fundraising, activism and campaigning. And our ambition for Mobilise has always been for it to be more than an SMS and PSMS platform.

 

We can’t wait to see where the next five years take us.

 

Paul de Gregorio

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One of the best gifts I’ve ever received wasn’t diamonds, a puppy, or even a teenage mutant ninja turtle playset. It was a humble tote bag. This one’s real special though. It’s huge, I mean, really big. And it was designed especially for me.

 

It has a distillation of my cliched brand essence emblazoned across it. The things I love. Hackney. Politics. Progress. And cats. (And it’s all in Helvetica. Swoon)

 

I wear my heart on my shoulder, and carry it with pride. And it starts conversations, with like-minded folks, and with those more sceptical wherever I go.

 

Full disclaimer: my love of a good tote goes beyond this one present. To me, they could be the fundraising future – or at least an exciting experiment. They occupy a unique place smack bang in the centre of a virtuous Venn diagram that we in fundraising should really be paying attention to.

 

  1. They help save the world (because carrying plastic means you hate, well everyone).
  2. They’re cheap enough to come by – even eco, organic, ethically made ones.
  3. In a world where ‘personal branding’ is actually a thing, they’re a hands-free protest placard.

 

In fact if a brand or organisation gives me one for free – and it connects with who I am, and who I want to be – they’ve got a walking bill-board for at least six months.

 

So what happens if you do this? Distill your charity’s essence, its core rallying cry into a message on a tote. And you offer it as a gift for people to carry around.

 

The people who take you up on your offer – they’re the ones who are ready to wave your placard high. So you start a conversation with them. And chances are, if they like you enough to shoulder your message, they’re going to care enough to get closer to you (maybe even cough up some cash).

 

In the months ahead, looking at GDPR and listening to supporters, we’re going to be talking a lot more about creating content that people *really* want to read, to watch, to share.

 

But before then – how about we start with creating something that people really want to wear, and take it from there?

 

(And in case my impassioned reasoning hasn’t inspired you to get in touch, we’re building an exciting case study to back it all up. In fact, the results we’ve seen so far are *totes* amazing…)

 

Ali

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We found out last night that Stand For Rights, the Facebook Live event we were involved in earlier this year has been nominated for an Emmy. The first time a Facebook Live event has been nominated for one.

 

Congratulations to everyone involved for receiving this nomination and for braving to try new things. We couldn’t be prouder to have been involved in this project.

 

All the details are here.

 

Ali, Fiona, James, Paul & Nick