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Should your nonprofit go mobile?

guest post by Marissa Wasseluk

Will your nonprofit communications plan benefit from using a mobile platform?

You may think that you don’t need to invest in creating a mobile app for your nonprofit, but recent statistics on media consumerism show that 90% of mobile subscribers have an Internet-ready phone (source: This means if your audience is not currently mobile Internet surfing, they will be soon.

Let’s think about this – would you rather sit in front of your computer, type in a URL, possibly a login and password, wait for that little spinny rainbow wheel to stop spinning – or would you rather turn on your phone wherever you are, touch a button and instantly access content?

Yes, my communicator colleagues, perhaps it’s time to consider creating a mobile app.

A recent study from Alexa shows the gaining popularity of mobile web apps vs. Internet usage.

Currently, 64% of mobile phone time is spent using apps. Alexa Internet estimates this to be about 81 minutes a day. Some smart nonprofits are engaging this new media-saavy audience with brand-themed games, location based services, touch-to-donate apps, and more.

It seems to be the most effective apps are those that are timeless or those that are timely. You can use your app to increase awareness of your cause with general information (making it always accessible), or use it to support a specific campaign (so its reach is maximized during that time period).

The YMCA uses location-based services to find the Y closest to where you are. An example of a timeless nonprofit mobile app.

Screen shots from the app developed by the nonprofit Falling Whistles that was used to support their touring team and garnered advocates by asking them to share their image for their cause - fighting for peace in the Congo. An example of a timely nonprofit mobile app.

Mobile apps only further enlighten people of your organizational presence and make your organization more accessible. It’s an innovative way to reach out to advocates, making advocacy and philanthropy a little bit more fun.

So if you’re thinking of using or optimizing a mobile app for your organization, think about the specifics of how you’re going to use it. Understanding what you want the end user to do with your app can help you plan on how to effectively (read: cost-effectively) create your own mobile platform.

At Making Media Connections this year, we are hosting a panel of specialists to talk about how to make your digital communications mobile-ready. Join us to address all your pressing questions about mobile platforms! Click here to register for the conference!

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Category: Making Media Connections


One Response

  1. […] Nonprofits Inspiring Generosity: 18 Ways to Improve Your Website’s Landing Pages NP Communicator: Should your nonprofit go mobile? socialmediatoday: 15 Social Media Lies, Myths & Fairy […]

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