Charity Fundraising: The Vital Role of Digital Technology
When we think of auctions and fundraising events, images of dusty old halls, village fetes and old men with auction hammers spring to mind. But, the way in which we fundraise has slowly but surely embraced digital technology, with sophisticated tech now playing a vital role in the way in which both small and well-established charities raise funds.
Today, we take a look at the best software and hardware helping charity fundraising evolve, giving our blog readers an insight into the tools and services out there for them to utilise.
Social media has completely changed the way in which we promote charity events such as silent auctions. As covered in our previous blog about the power of social media in charity fundraising, social networking sites now sit at the centre of campaigns and charity work in general.
From listing events on Facebook and sharing Instagram stories live at silent auctions to creating a unique event hashtag to create social hype of Twitter, social media just makes connecting with people and locating opportunities possible.
This is especially the case when it comes to silent auctions, makes promoting unique items and generally planning online auctioning events a breeze.
We have seen a sharp rise in mobile phone usage in the last five years, being a nation that is obsessed with being connected on the go. With the humble mobile phone now being our digital companion, we pretty much do everything via our devices. From connecting with friends on social media platforms to booking restaurants and carrying out many of our professional day-to-day duties, the smartphone is used for much more than just calling a cab.
Now, mobile phones are peoples’ first port of call when looking to donate to charity or organise fundraising campaigns. This is why many auction brands are now looking to make mobile bidding an option.
Blockchain technology and Bitcoins at auctions
Blockchain technology now has a prominent place in auctioning. While an incredibly complex technology to decode and unpick, on a basic level, blockchain is the technology that underpins the cryptocurrency, Bitcoin. Now, we are seeing more and more auction houses and sites taking payments for auction items in Bitcoin and other cryptocurrency formats. As well as giving events and fundraisers a competitive edge, taking payments for merchandise and memorabilia via Bitcoin has its financial benefits, offering lower transaction costs than many other payment methods. Platforms such as Coinbase or Bitpay require no fees for transactions whatsoever!
Charities using VR to demonstrate impact
Consumed by the industry, the Bid-Aid team are constantly attending events and testing new technologies that will improve and enhance our silent auctioning products and services. In recent months, we have seen the growing demand for VR technology, with more and more people in the third sector starting to make use of virtual reality at charity fundraising events.
One of the most impactful uses of such technology we have seen is the Alzheimer's Research UK’s ‘A walk through dementia project’. This offered a glimpse into what life is like as someone with dementia through their innovative virtual reality smartphone app. Working in partnership with VISYON, the charity gained international acclaim for this campaign, harnessing new technology to engage people with Donors on a new level.
Pere Perez, CEO at VISYON, said:
“We were pleased to develop A Walk Through Dementia, which showcases how emerging technologies such as virtual reality can help charities communicate in new and engaging ways. Immersive content formats encourages us to re-think how we tell stories and allows us to place users at the centre of the experience, rather than just watching from the sidelines. With a condition as misunderstood as dementia, the power of this technology to inform and connect with people could really change attitudes.”
iPad bidding at silent auctions
Silent auctioning is a fundraising format that has been around for centuries. But, over the last decade, the introduction of the iPad and other mobile tablets has shaken the industry right up. Streamlining the whole bidding process, bidding via a tablet is quick, fun and more importantly; kind to the environment. What’s more, using tablets at auction events means you rid of the costs involved in designing and printing bidding booklets; with cutting costs being something all Event Planners will be interested in doing.
Here at BidAid, we offer both tablet bidding technology as well as traditional sheet-bidding services, ensuring we can cater to our customers’ needs and wants; no matter how demanding they are!
So, from social media and smartphone bidding to blockchain payments and VR events and campaigns, it is safe to say that technology is opening up doors for charity fundraising internationally.
Are you planning a silent auction?
If you are in the process of planning a charity fundraising event then we at BidAid would love to discuss our services and solutions with you. Working with some of the best tablet bidding technology in the business, we help our customers exceed those all-important targets, adding a fun strand to all of the events in which we are involved with.
So, whether you are looking to partner with a silent auction provider that can deliver sheet bidding, tablet bidding or a mix of the two, we are the company for you. Having worked with an extensive list of Event Planners and high-profile charities, we are well equipped when it comes to supporting you in meeting your charitable goals. What’s more is that we can take many of the responsibilities connected to charity event planning from you. This includes sourcing auctioneers and even transferring your funds to your charity at the end of the night.
For more information on us and the way we work, get in touch today. From here, we can discuss the many options on offer.