Red Cross Used SMS Raising $32M for Haiti


The American Red Cross received donations for its Haiti earthquake relief campaign via SMS from 3 million unique donors, of which 20,000 opted in to receive ongoing email communications from the nonprofit organization. Thanks to SMS-savvy consumers and support from partners, the Red Cross raised more than $32 million to help victims and survivors of the earthquakes that devastated this Caribbean nation. In addition to fundraising, SMS is invaluable as a communications channel that nonprofit organizations can use for outreach and CRM, to issue calls for volunteers and to collect data about their supporters.

Of the 3 million donors who contributed money to the American Red Cross via text message, 1.5 million got a call-to-action to follow the Red Cross on Twitter, while the other half got a text message asking them to opt-in to receive email updates. Ms. McAndrew said that approximately 20,000 donors responded to the call-to-action by sending a text message with their email address, giving the Red Cross the go-ahead to contact them via that channel as well.

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