Can You Give to Me Now?
First, let me say it's great to see global fundraising rocker Tony Elischer posting more frequently on his Facebook page.
One of his recent posts really caught my eye and made me go "hmmmmm."
He posted a photo of a billboard promoting a Save the Children text-to-give campaign that he saw recently on London public transit. The copy on the billboard urged riders to "text BREAD to 70090 now."
The comment: "This one from the London Tube, always dubious about text to give on the Tube, there's no signal, so more steps/effort needed."
Great point, Tony!
Sure, folks on the subway are a bored, captive audience, and reading that poster then spending a few seconds texting a donation might be a more interesting distraction than, say, watching someone clip his toenails or having an argument with an imaginary friend.
But … the beauty of text-to-give is its immediacy. If you place the ads in an area with little to no signal (thus no way to act on the giving impulse), are you wasting your money? You have to wonder how many people try to text when they see the message and can't ... and of those, how many remember to do it once they get above ground. I bet the drop-off rate is high.
Reactions to Tony's comments were mixed, with some folks pointing out that 55 percent of the London Underground runs above ground, to Tony himself clarifying that "London is just now finishing tests to put wifi in the stations, never mind on the trains themselves."
I don't know if I would have made this astute observation on my own had I seen this billboard (which is why Tony does what he does and I just write about it), but now that it's been pointed out, it makes perfect sense. Seems like a little thing at first but, much like those Facebook memes that you see once in a while, "once you see it … ."