All posts tagged Mobile

The Best Ways to Market Your Charity on Mobile Phones

When was the last time you saw a non-profit set up at a busy intersection asking for signatures on a petition? If you don’t remember, you’re not alone. Just like the rest of the world, the face of charity has changed from a face-to-face model to a web-based one. The change has been mutually beneficial. Contributors have the opportunity to research a charity before donating, while non-profits can use the contribution to enhance the relationship between donor and recipient.

Mobile phones have become a significant part of raising money for charities. Think of the text-based donation requests that come from the Red Cross. Not every charity has the reach of the Red Cross, however, so most organizations rely on social media to spread their message. The widespread abundance of smartphones and 4G coverage means it’s easier than ever to reach people, but the message has to be sent through the proper social channels in order for it to be heard.

How to use Twitter Cards for your Charity Mobile app

Twitter have launched new functionality that will make everyone’s Twitter stream just a little bit more engaging. Taking a leaf out of Google Plus, Twitter has now expanded its “Cards” functionality to allow for iPhone, iPad and Android apps to stand out in streams with their own look and feel.

The way it works is to include meta data in one of your webpages where you talk about your Mobile app, say on your website. In that page’s meta data you add the following meta and customize it with your apps details and links to the Apple and Google stores.

To make use of Twitter Cards you first need to validate your domain with Twitter and complete the Cards sign-up process on Twitter Developers.

To enable this new feature, copy and paste this code into your <head> </head> and then customize it to suit your app. You can remove any tags that aren’t relevant. If you don’t have an iPad app remove those lines.

<meta name=”twitter:card” content=”app”>
<meta name=”twitter:description” content=”Connect with our charity on your smartphone.”>
<meta name=”twitter:app:id:iphone” content=”306934135″>
<meta name=”twitter:app:url:iphone” content=”example://action/5149e249222f9e600a7540ef”>
<meta name=”twitter:app:id:ipad” content=”45672334″>
<meta name=”twitter:app:url:ipad” content=”example://action/5149e249222f9e600a7540ef”>
<meta name=”twitter:app:url:googleplay” content=”example://action/5149e249222f9e600a7540ef”>
<meta name=”twitter:app:id:googleplay” content=”com.example.app”>

Let’s break down each Twitter Card tag and see how it works

<meta name=”twitter:card” content=”app”>
 This tag tells Twitter that the meta data below is to be used for an APP Card, if you don’t set this correctly it won’t work.

<meta name=”twitter:description” content=”My app description”>
Here we are setting the app description that will be seen by Twitter users.

<meta name=”twitter:app:id:iphone” content=”306934135″>
This is your iPhone app on the iTunes store’s unique ID code

<meta name=”twitter:app:url:iphone” content=”://iphoneAppURL”>
The url of your iPhone app on the iTunes store.

<meta name=”twitter:app:id:ipad” content=”45672334″>
This is your iPad app on the iTunes store’s unique ID code

<meta name=”twitter:app:url:ipad” content=”://ipadAppURL”>
The url of your iPad app on the iTunes store.

<meta name=”twitter:app:id:googleplay” content=”com.example.app”>
Your Google Play app ID

<meta name=”twitter:app:url:googleplay” content=”://PlayAppURL”>
The URL to your app on the Google Play Store.

Once you have all of that information included, and your tags saved into your page, any time that link is shared on Twitter your App Card will be displayed instead of just a boring link and a page title.

It will be interesting to see if Apple and Google include this new meta on their respective stores, it’s bound to increase the visibility and virality of mobile apps if they do.

Let us know in the comments if you set-up your charity’s mobile apps with a Twitter Card.

Charities losing £460 million a year on greetings cards

Registered charities are losing out on an estimated £460 million each year because they focus too much on Christmas cards – and don’t supply greeting cards all year round.

An October 2010 Mintel report revealed that 21% of people are desperate to support their favourite charity through everyday greeting cards, and a quarter of those would spend more on a charity card.

A new charity greeting cards platform is helping charities take a chunk of the annual £1.48 billion card industry – with absolutely zero risk.

Charity Greetings allows charities such as the Alzheimer’s Society and Diabetes UK to sell quality, every day, High Street greeting cards to their supporters online, raising funds from every card sold.

There is no stock to print, buy or fulfil, meaning there is no risk or increased workload for the charity.

And the cards can generate on average £155 revenue for every 100 supporters. You can learn more and get a full information pack at www.joincharitygreetings.com.

“This is about helping charities tap into a market worth £1.48 billion a year in the UK alone,” said CEO Craig Hartzel.

Introduction to mobile barcode QR technology

The mobile web has been a long held promise but finally the first wave of mobile web devices like the iPhone and Android devices allow for more advanced ways to get online. New to Europe are QR barcodes a special code that can be read by a mobile phone. Read on to learn how QR can be used to enable an entirely new form of awareness raising for businesses and charities / non-profits.

UPDATE: FACEBOOK ADDS QR

Hi Facebook users, thanks for your interest in QR technology. First up we know a lot of you are concerned that this is a scam or a hack, it’s NOT. Facebook have now enabled QR for your profiles.

What this means is users of mobile phones will be able to snap a mobile QR code and get your profile URL so they can access your Facebook page from their mobile phone. At a guess we would say expect to see a QR reader in a future iPhone / Android version of the Facebook mobile app.

At the moment the QR popup seems to be broken, also you can change a status update into a QR coded message…We’re very familiar with QR and the purpose of that feature is a bit lost on us as well :-)

Mofuse offer 20% charity discount

In our look at how Bullying UK launched a mobile website  in 24 hours we talked extensively about the Mofuse platform and how easy it is for a charity to create a mobile version of their website just by using a bit of RSS . In fact it was so easy we built two sites!

Mofuse have been in contact and would like to offer any charity a 20% discount off any of the premium Mofuse packages. You can also use Mofuse Standard for FREE but you only get a couple of RSS feed inputs which for some won’t be enough if you want to split sections down.

Kidney Research on Twitter and awareness

What is your charity’s name and mission?

Kidney Research UK, our mission is to fund life-saving research into kidney disease, to improve the quality of life of those with the kidney disorders and to increase public awareness of kidney health.

What is your name?
Helen

How long have you been using Twitter and whose idea was it?
Since mid April – so not too long although personally since August 07. I thought Twitter was something we needed to embrace, having followed a few passionate charity people on my personal account I found other charities and immediately saw the ways we could use it to promote Kidney Research UK and our cause.  I’ve also used it in the previous two companies I’ve worked for, one to spread news articles and the other as customer service.

What have you enjoyed so far while using Twitter?
That it gives me direct access to people in similar roles within other charities, early days of using it for the charity at the moment.  I think the instant connection is great – on the morning the London Marathon 2010 ballot opened the site was down for the majority of people, I used twitter search to find people that were trying to register and suggested they could always register to run for us!

Have there been instances of followers doing something wonderful for you?
I haven’t widely publicised our account to supporters yet as I want to make sure I’m using it in the right way and consistently before spreading the word and upping followers!

What has been your biggest challenge to date?

Finding the right mix between making it a charity account but still keeping the personal touch – making it almost a personal account with a cause.

Do you have a Twitter tip for other charities?
Start slow, don’t jump right in and invite supporters to follow you , test the water first, find your way round, find the right way to get your message across.

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Would your charity / Non-profit like to take part in our questions and answers? If so follow this link for instructions: Twitter charity interview questions.

Bullying UK launch cyber bullying mobile advice site

Children being bullied online can now get instant help from Bullying UK using their mobile phone.

The charity has devised a mobile version of its award-winning website with special emphasis on cyber bullying. Young people can access the site by visitinghttp://cyberbullying.co.uk from their mobile phone or by scanning a special QR mobile barcode from an anti-bullying poster that takes them directly to the site.

“The idea is that when someone sees that abuse has been uploaded to a website like Bebo, Facebook, MySpace or YouTube while they’re out and about with their mobile phone, they can immediately access our special cyber bullying help which gives practical advice on what to do about the problem,” said Bullying UK CEO John Carnell.

The charity is calling on social networking websites to act much more quickly to remove abuse and false rumours.

“We’re always hearing from young people that reporting abuse doesn’t get it removed quickly enough. It’s a very public humiliation and causes huge distress,” said John.

“There’s no excuse for it to take weeks on end before these websites remove the offensive material. They should take it down the same day.”

Half a million visitors to Bullying UK a year

Bullying UK is the UK’s most popular anti-bullying website with more than 500,000 visitors a year. The mobile QR Reader is available for more than 300 phones from http://reader.kaywa.com. Download the reader to your phone then snap the code and the reader will send you to our mobile website.

This project was built and launched in less than 24 hours using the Mofuse platform (mofuse.com), making it quick and easy to create and deploy mobile websites.

The charity is the previous winner of the Daily Mirror Pride of Britain Award, Talk Talk Innovation in the Community Award and Big Issue Big Difference Award, among many other national accolades.

 

JustGiving goes iPhone, Fundraising 2.0

This is probably the best news we’ve heard all year for digital fundraising. JustGiving, the UK‘s leading charity donation site, has just launched an iPhone app.

The app has a number of very useful features for fundraisers including the ability to get a push notification every time someone makes a donation. WOOHOO!

The app is beautiful to behold and runs fast. You can visit any of your pages and see donation total, update the news or post images directly from your phone. Basically, you get JustGiving in your pocket.

Welcome to true Fundraising 2.0, JustGiving nail it and we’re sure have many more excellent features in the works for Version 2 of the JustGiving iPhone app.

Just one question… When can we expect the Android and Blackberry apps? :-)

Download or learn more about JustGiving for iPhone V1 at iTunes

Apple donation button campaign gets coverage #AppleDonateFail

The Civil Society have picked-up on our calls for Apple to consider letting charities have direct donation buttons in their apps or passing along 100% of the app fee to the charity / non-profit.

Time as they say can bring perspective and we know many people support the campaign but also think Apple won’t change its policy. Maybe they are right but if you don’t ask you don’t get. The problem is with big companies you tend to need a big voice or lots of little voices all shouting as one to get noticed.

We know Apple can’t click their fingers and make it happen overnight, but give us an indication that they are working on it or considering a way forward that allows good causes to use the fantastic app store and get a fair deal at the same time, we don’t think that is too much to ask.

We understand that there are going to be processing fees and that’s fine, they can deduct those but we’re sure their payment partners will want to support the initiative. Apple are a huge company and sure there are lots of big charities / non-profits in the world but there are also way more smaller charities who could really benefit from a little Apple love.

Apple are well known for innovative products and services, now it’s time to come up with an innovative offer to the non-profit world that shows Apple prizes the work of all good causes not just the ones that can help them grab headlines.

We know there are bound to be reasons or problems that prevent them from going ahead with this right now, but if they involve the non-profit community and let us help them make it a reality. Maybe we’re expecting too much? OK then meet us half way or offer us all a little something extra that says Apple cares about all good causes.

A dedicated charity / non-profits section in the app store would be nice.

This isn’t an Apple Sucks Movement, it’s a ‘We respect you, but would like a new policy’ movement :-)

Why smaller charities need direct donation buttons

BullyingUK is a small charity by income and staff (there’s only one employee and an income of £50,000 a year) but because the charity has always been innovative in using the best technology it helps 500,000 people a year, that’s 10p a person supported, and we know we can use the mobile web including the iPhone to push that even lower.

We want to make the iPhone a core part of our work moving forward, alongside Android, WebOS and Blackberry but we can only do that if Apple makes it fair and gives up the profits from charity / non-profit apps to the organisations concerned.

We don’t think it’s fair we should have to push the user out onto the web to bypass iTunes to make a donation or have to incur the extra time and expense to do that. Let’s face it, a web app wont be as nice as doing it on the OS.

In some ways it harms the iPhone experience which is bad for Apple and bad for charities, just a thought!

You can catch up on the campaign so far by reading our opening call for support of #AppleDonateFail

Donations from your iPhone app? Forget it say Apple #appledonatefail

Bullying UK recently released version 1 of its iPhone app to much applause from many people. We got to work on version 2 using the excellent AppMakr. We figured for the next version we would add a donation button and a nice bit of copy to ask for a donation.

We submitted the app and waited, some time later the app was rejected by AppMakr and we have just been told why. Apparently Apple won’t allow you to include a donation button in applications.

We have created a #AppleDonateFail Poll so please take the time to read this article and vote on the poll.

AppMakr said this about the app rejection:

“Apple tends to reject apps that have content related to donations or charity. We have issued you a coupon “REMOVED” which will enable you to rebuild your App for free, minus the tab related to donations.”

As many have replied to the @BullyingUK feed, this is outrageous and here is the silly thing. We had a donation page  in the pupils’ section of the app when it was submitted the first time. It seems buttons are a no-no but a page is OK, it’s just a bit silly.

Thing is, Apple has a history of illogical decisions like this, well you know what on behalf of charities everywhere that need to get a little ROI from their mobile work we say let’s take this issue to Apple.

Thanks to appmakr for the code but we have to say…. poor show Apple having issues with donation buttons.

First we need a suitable show of support to get Apple to reconsider this odd decision and show them that this makes them look very charity / non-profit unfriendly. Sure we get that they may not want normal developers having donation buttons but charities are an exception and Apple should recognise that.

Are Apple saying they don’t want charity apps on the app store? Tell us up front and we can all skip the iPhone and just build for Android.

To get involved either tweet #AppleDonateFail and your message of support, blog about this issue or leave a comment below.

The #AppleDonateFailCampaign So Far

We have created an #AppleDonateFail Poll which ask what you think Apple should do…. either allow the donate buttons, give up their 30% cut on charity apps or not do anything at all. It would be great if you could take the time to cast your vote and tell your social streams about it.

The campaign has been covered by The Civil Society and we have over 70 retweets of this page so far. There are also many messages of support for the campaign if you take a look at the #AppleDonateFail search on Twitter.

Stuart has also added his thoughts in a blog post entitled Why can’t  I donate

Updates: Wow the campaign is off to a flying start already, 39 retweets in just a few hours many people commenting that this is just bonkers and really not fair, one person tweeted and we think this is probably on the money as far as Apple’s policy is concerned.

“Ha! Good luck. Unfortunately there is no way Apple will allow a revenue stream not via Apple payment gateway.”

You know, this does raise an interesting point. Apple seem to think that charities should “sell” their apps in the store so Apple gets its 30% cut. To say that it’s distasteful that Apple should expect a cut from charity / non-profit apps is an understatement.

So what should Apple do? In our view either remove the donation button restriction from registered non-profit / charity apps or guarantee that Apple will pass along 100% of it’s fee from any “pay” applications.

The knock on effect is simple for Apple to understand. More charities using the app store, means a lot of supporters being told about the app store. Which has to be good for Apple’s brand awareness. Seriously, what threat are the world’s non-profits to Mr Jobs’ $50 billion dollar company?

More Information

Here is a screen shot of the offending donation button. As you can see it’s not very threatening. It goes to a page pulled in via RSS that loads a small page with some words and a JustGiving graphic. Click the graphic to arrive at the JG website. Basic stuff and not something that is any threat to Apple or it’s iPhone.