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Charities using digital - why isn't it happening?

Charities using digital – why isn’t it happening?

Why aren’t charities using digital?

The charity sector has, and will likely continue to, play a huge part of Britain. This is reflected through British values and backed up by facts such as:

  • The UK being the most generous country in Europe.
  • The UK’s position in the top 10 for most generous countries.

Charities need to take a digital leap of faith, as the majority do not utilise digital tools within their marketing strategies to help them grow.

As it stands, the average adult in the U.K spends between 8 to 9 hours on social media a day, this alone shows the importance of social media.

To you and I, the process of setting up and running social media accounts may sound simple. However, for numerous charities, this is something they are anxious to explore.

This is the case for almost 50% of charities in the U.K, who have no forms of digital strategy whatsoever. Those who do, do not have a strategy for the long term.

Charities are missing out on potential fundraising from vast communities online, which is problematic.

ALS Challenge

We have seen the success of viral social media marketing in the case of the Ice bucket challenge, raising money for ALS.

It added an element of fun into the mix, whereby people would pour a bucket of ice water on themselves, video it, then nominate friends/family to partake too. Furthermore, this medium of marketing was perfect when targeting millennials (Generation Y), with the results speaking for themselves.

Prior to the #IceBucketChallenge, the ALS foundation achieved $3 million in donations. That number increased significantly to reach $100 million the following year.

Here’s a great video showing the heights of the ALS challenge’s success:

What needs to be done

The charity sector needs to adapt to the up and coming generation to prosper. According to the Digital skills report:

by 2027, 68% of their respondents believe the charity sector will change due to digital.

However, that is 10 years away and this change needs to happen much sooner.

Generation Z (those born after 2000) need to be won with “imagination and emotions” argues Kantar Millard Brown.

Digital media can be used for storytelling, as it is easier to put across emotion through an image/video.

Syria 360

A perfect example of this is “Syria 360”, created by Amnesty International. With the help of a VR (Virtual Reality) headset it threw the user in to what the people of Syria are experiencing, which they would be able to see and hear. This campaign went on to win “Digital Innovation of the Year 2016” from Third Sector Awards and increased Amnesty International’s direct debit sign ups by 9%…

Charities still aren’t putting enough resources towards digital and social. We live in an age where we meet, buy, sell, online. Charities can’t afford to be left behind and miss out on many years’ worth of opportunity.

Qasim Majid About the author
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