Although the incorporation of digital technology is yet to enter its blooming phase, the organizations which have embraced digitization are definitely receiving impressive results. A recent survey has shown that charities which are digitally focused have increased their productivity, donations, and efficiency with the incorporation of digital technology. It can be affirmed that the charity sector is thoroughly influenced by digital technology. To be specific, the effects are mostly positive.
1. Increased fundraising – Digital fundraising has led to an increase in donations. According to reports, some charities have seen a 600% increase in donations by incorporating digital fundraising procedures. The advancement of technology has made it much easier for people to donate. The World Food Programme of the UN released a user friendly mobile app named ‘Share the meal’. Using this app, $0.50 payment can be made by the donor in order to feed a child for a day. To date, the number of shared meals has crossed 31 million. A trial conducted by Barclaycard revealed that with the help of contactless payments, people are likely to donate three times more than a regular cash donor. With the use of digital technology, reasons like not having cash on hand can no longer be a barrier to making donations.
2. Better rate of engagement – Digital technology has made it easier to reach out to an increasing number of people. Apart from this, it also helps in engaging existing beneficiaries, volunteers, and supporters. Through mediums like social media, you can reach out to the people from different nations and various age groups. You can also directly interact with your supporters.
Moreover, communicating through digital mediums is way cheaper than through traditional mediums. Apart from this, digital technology also lets you build more trust among people. Digitalization also fosters clarity. With the enhanced application of digital technology, organizations belonging to the charity sector are forced to display the ways in which donations are being used.
3. Use of apps to facilitate donations – The charity sector has started using applications which are targeted at making the process of donating a lot easier than before. There are mainly three types of apps:
Fundraising apps– These apps are specifically designed to make the process of receiving and giving donations easier. A simple webpage layout facilitates the process of making a donation.
Apps that are made especially for the beneficiaries– The apps that fall into this category are aimed at the beneficiaries and are developed by charity organizations. One example can be of an engaging learning portal that can provide online training to the user.
Common apps used by both for-profit and not-for-profit organizations– There are applications which are used by both for-profit organizations and charities. Some examples of such applications are file sharing apps, cloud-based accounting software, ideas sharing apps, etc.
4. Creating more awareness – The advancement of digital technology has given rise to many tools that promote awareness. Social media can definitely be regarded as one of the most powerful mediums for promotional purposes. In today’s world, many people are spending most of their time with their phone. They depend on digital services to take care of most of their daily chores. Digital technology has changed the way charities do their campaigning. For example, the “ice bucket challenge” which was initiated to raise awareness and funding for fighting ALS (the motor neuron disease) was recognized by people on a global scale.
Social media has made it possible to constantly educate and convince people. Now, instead of waiting all year round to create an awareness program, charities can work on building awareness every day. Apart from this, social media has also introduced the opportunity to bring in social changes and deal with the issues that fail to receive sufficient attention.
5. Ushering in innovation in the charity sector- Digital technology is helping the charity sector by ushering in innovations. By incorporating technologies like Artificial Intelligence, charities can improve their operations. According to James, a Social Science assignment help provider, “Chatbots and AI assistance are two great ways of incorporating AI in a charity.” The natural language processing feature of AI can help charities to reach out to people who speak different languages. Apart from this, AI can also help to make the research process more efficient, by helping to search through academic data.
As mentioned earlier, digital technology has changed the way organizations promote or market themselves. This brings us to evaluate the impact of digital technology on the marketing practices of organizations that engage in charity. Provided below are some of the ways in which digital technology is revolutionizing the marketing initiatives adopted by the charity sector:
- Personalization- Digital innovation has made it possible to provide consumers with a completely personalized experience. This can help business management to enhance their connection with customers. With the help of augmented reality apps, it is possible to showcase to a donor how a donation will help to make lives better.
- Cost effective- Traditional marketing techniques require a lot of money, something which most charitable organizations do not have. On the other hand, digital marketing or the use of digital technology in marketing requires less money. Marketers involved in the charity sector can save a lot of money using digital marketing.
- Measurable- Digital marketing provides the opportunity to measure the results of an ad campaign. Unlike traditional marketing, digital marketing enables individuals to see if marketing efforts are working or not. Based on results, they can take new initiatives and or make changes in their campaigns.
- Improved reach- It was mentioned earlier that digital innovation has made it possible for organizations to reach out to a large number of potential donors. It also allows for targeting the individuals you want to reach and enables direct interaction with donors as well as enhanced engagement.
The positive impact of digital technology on any sector is quite apparent and that is certainly the case in the charity sector. Although the sector is marked by a lack of confidence, skill, capacity and funding, digital technology will definitely change things for the better.