Can mobile giving mesh with matching gifts?

Posted on September 22, 2011


Text-to-give programs are growing, but anonymity makes it tough to match.

We’ve come a long way with employee giving programs. 10 years ago, we filled out United Way pledge cards and paper matching gift forms. Today many companies offer online payroll, matching gift and volunteer programs.

But what should companies do about the latest trend – mobile giving? Text-to-give campaigns, where donors give via mobile phones, are on the rise. Can we match those gifts?

Here are some challenges:

  • Gifts are small. Most matching gift programs have a minimum. The typical $5 or $10 mobile gifts fall below those limits.
  • Gifts are anonymous. Subscriber names, locations and phone numbers are not transmitted along with donations. Makes it difficult for companies to verify employee gifts.
  • Too many steps. The beauty of text-to-give is its simplicity. Requesting a match by entering a second online (or paper) company process is cumbersome.

Matching gift vendors may be in the best position to help. If they can add mobile options to corporate giving programs, donors can still give on the go and get the match.

What suggestions do you have?