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Quick history of carrier billed $10 donations: $10 text to give came to prominence after the 2010 earthquake in Haiti, followed by the tsunami in Japan in 2011. People who text a keyword to a designated phone number can add $10 to their cellphone bill for the month. In theory, this was an effective way to raise money, but newer systems have emerged, specifically mobile pledging, that make it easier for organizations to raise more money faster. Carrier billed micro-donations have now become largely obsolete because of the speed at which technology evolves.

$10 carrier billed donations have become largely obsolete due to smartphone adoption.


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Carrier billed donations are limited to $10, have a long remittance timeline, and family/corporate plans are usually ineligible.


After natural disasters strike, people in the affected areas need aid as quickly as possible. $10 text to give donations allow people to make donations in a matter of seconds, but major cellphone providers need to process the donations, and remittance can take up to 90 days. Additionally, people are limited to $10 contributions. In many cases, donors would give more if they were able to.

Mobile pledging yields and average donation size of $107.

The success of text to give is also impeded by eligibility as most carrier billed donations will not go through if contributors are on a corporate or family plan, which prevents nonprofits from collecting the donations.
Due to these challenges, 41% of all contributors who attempt to make a $10 text to give donation never fulfill their gift.

Today only AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile and Verizon support carrier billed donations leaving all other carriers out in the cold.


In addition to the other issues with text to give campaigns, all of the major wireless carriers stopped supporting text billing except for political and nonprofit fundraising, Mobile Commerce Daily reported. Now only the big 4 carriers support carrier billed donations; AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile and Verizon. The move signifies the gradually dwindling support for the carrier billed fundraising channel. However, newer, more effective technology has been introduced to continue the ease of mobile donations for donors with increased fundraising revenues for organizations. Although text to give was a highly useful mode of fundraising in the past, it is time to move beyond it now and consider more effective mobile fundraising methods. But whats next?

Mobile Pledging is the future for fundraising.


Mobile pledging (see below) combines the ease of mobile fundraising with the power of smartphones. Donors 1—text a keyword, 3—click a link, 4—choose any amount they want to give, and the organization can quickly process contributions without waiting to receive funds from wireless carriers. While the maximum for text to give campaigns is $10, the average mobile pledge is $107! Not only does it take less time to access donations, but your organization can also raise more from each campaign. This is particularly beneficial immediately after a natural disaster. With text message reminders and optional voice call follow up, mobile pledging yields an 84% average fulfillment rate which is 25% higher fulfillment than traditional text to give.


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Mobile Pledging allows organizations to capture full donor data for donor care and future use


Mobile pledging has another clear advantage over $10 text to give. It’s much easier to collect donor information for future use. Through your donation form, you can gather mobile numbers and allow people to opt in for future communications. This leaves you with a more sustainable donor database for future campaigns. Text to give does not provide any donor data except mobile number.

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