Today I’m live blogging parts of the 2011 Millennial Donor Summit, a virtual conference. So you’ll see a few posts from me today.

This session is called When Mobile Delivers Millennial Donors with Tonia Zampieri (Iheartcharity on Twitter)

Smart phone sales have surpassed PC sales — two years before it was projected to happen. Mobile is growing faster than anyone has predicted — even those who are supposed to know.

Smart phone adoption is also very prevalent in lower income brackets, because you can basically get all you need in your hand, and avoid phone and broadband charges at home.

90% of mobile subscribers in the US have an Internet-ready phone.

So . . . how to engage millennials and use mobile, given its prevalence?

Think about these four elements:

Mobile Websites: If they can’t find you where they are looking, millennials will go elsewhere. So if they can’t get your website on their phone, that’s a problem.  They want basic info and tools for action. Look at your own website on a mobile phone. Are the basic info and calls to action right there? Probably not, which means you need a mobile version of your site that is really stripped down. Same goes for email — make sure that your emails look good on mobile phones (and yes, millennials do still use email for some purposes.)

You can’t take everything to your mobile site, so boil it down to essentials.

SMS/Text: Every device now can send a text, so this is really available to everyone. Millennials really like seeing immediate impact. So when they reply Yes to an advocacy message, and as a result you send their name to an executive or decisionmaker (like PETA did to Donna Karan to ask her to stop using fur), they love that. Really think about how you can use texting and mobile apps for advocacy in particular.

Mobile Giving: Start segmenting your channels — know where to talk to your supporters and use those for communications, including the asks and feedback on how those gifts are being used. Make sure your donation pages are mobile optimized. The form needs to be super simple and easy. 82% of millennials also prefer to donate to specific projects, so along with a mobile donation page, think about doing this project by project. It’s all about making it really simple and convenient.

Mobile Apps: An app for volunteers would be a great way to engage millennials — very action oriented, where they can volunteer in real-time, push messages like “We need 10 more people today . . .”  Fun activities that are game-like where you compete against others could also work. Think scavenger hunts. It’s all about activism. Mobile apps can run $10K-30K, however.

Bottom Line: Make progress on mobile by starting with a mobile website. Think about specific educational and activism opportunities that make sense for mobile. What do you really want millennials to do (volunteer, share with friends, get educated)? What information is most important for real-time delivery? What updates can you provide in real-time?

More session updates after the lunch break.

Here are some other MDS 11 Live Blogger posts . . .

Exploring the Latest Millennial Donor Research – summary by Amy Sample Ward

Notes from Livestrong and Mr. Youth – summary by Nonprofit Nate

7 things I learned about Millennial Engagement from Mr. Youth — by Katya Andresen

Published On: June 22, 2011|Categories: Fundraising, Nonprofit Communications|

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