Using Technology for a Good Cause
I love my smartphone, and I bet you do, too. We use these devices for work and play, taking photos of our kids and sending emails to our customers without missing a beat. I bet some of you are reading this on your phones right now.
As much as modern consumer technology enables us to connect, it is criticized for its power to isolate. We may interact with others through text message, social media or Snapchat, but the smartphone screen divides us from any real connection.
Still, technology has the extraordinary ability to bring us together—if we use it right. And that’s no more evident than in the ways charities across the world use tech promotions to raise funds and fight for the most important causes. At Prime Line, we’ve found many great ways to connect customers to causes through technology, and you can use these same strategies in your businesses.
Many major nonprofit organizations use endurance events to drive fundraising. The National Multiple Sclerosis Society, for example, hosts a mud-run version of its popular Ride MS and Walk MS events. Often, these charities reward top event fundraisers with tech fitness products, like earbuds, wearable fitness trackers, pedometers and more.
These items not only incentivize participants to hit fundraising goals, but also remind recipients about their experiences with the charity after the event—I still use the earbuds I received from a walkathon in 2013. This increases the likelihood that a participant will return to fundraise again, helping charities turn onetime supporters into lifelong advocates.
It’s not just races and walks. Corporations are getting in on the tech-items-for-good act, too. Target recently partnered with UNICEF to sell the children’s rights organization’s Kid Power Bands—fitness trackers designed for kids. The kids earn points for walking, and UNICEF translates those points into funding from a number of corporate sponsors.
It’s up to you to put this all together. Imagine working with a nonprofit to promote a 5k run. The charity can use a tech fitness product giveaway to encourage sign-ups and boost fundraising. Then, you could provide race participants with armband smartphone holders, T-shirts, water bottles and sunglasses. And you don’t need to sell only to the nonprofits—local businesses that want to get involved are great potential clients. That’s just one way to bring several separate organizations together.
It doesn’t get more connected than that.