Civil Voices
NEWS  |  General, Opinion

Not for Profits Need to Embrace Mobile Technology

Wednesday, 7th November 2012 at 9:49 am
Staff Reporter
The time is right for Australian Not for Profits to develop a mobile strategy as part of their social media plan, says US Consultant, Rolfe Larson.

Wednesday, 7th November 2012
at 9:49 am
Staff Reporter



Not for Profits Need to Embrace Mobile Technology
Wednesday, 7th November 2012 at 9:49 am

BLOG: The time is right for Australian Not for Profits to develop a mobile strategy as part of their social media plan, says US Consultant, Rolfe Larson.

It's amazing how fast mobile devices have taken over our lives. I've had my smartphone for only a few months, but hardly a day goes by when I don't ask it for advice. This past week alone, I looked for child-friendly restaurants, a "green" dry cleaner, bus routes, airline tickets, and a car rental.

Sure, I have a computer, and I use it all the time. But if I'm waiting for a meeting to begin, or stuck in traffic, or eating lunch alone, or waking up in the middle of the night, or waiting in a doctor’s office, or – OK, you get the idea — you'll find me doing something on my phone. And so are a lot of other people.

Including your donors. And your funders. And the general public.

Last year, global smartphone sales grew 63%, exceeding PC sales for the first time. More than 88% of the Australian population (14+) own a mobile phone and more than half of these are smart phones that can browse the Internet. And 75% of consumers reported buying things using their phones. So now is the time for most Not for Profits to develop a mobile strategy to reach those people.

What are mobile strategies? I divide them into three categories. First, and easiest, reconfigure your emails and newsletters to be easily read on smart phones, especially iPhones and Androids.

Secondly, and a bit more expensively, create a mobile-friendly version of your website, so when people start looking for your company on their phones, they can read all about your products and services hassle-free.

You can also get your organisation listed in existing apps. For example, I led a team that recently created a new app, Social Impact, for mobile phones, which “finds” local retail social enterprises in Australia and abroad. It's for customers who want their purchasing to reflect the change they seek in the world.

Finally, and most expensively, you can create your own app. Fortunately, that’s not mandatory like having a web site or Facebook page.

Before jumping into mobile, be sure to ask a few questions. Are your target customers using smart phones? How would mobile fit into and reinforce your other marketing efforts? And finally, how will you measure results?

I know this may seem overwhelming, especially if you're a smaller Not for Profit. You might already have a newsletter, a website, social media activity. And now a mobile strategy? Really? Well, yes, I am saying that. The reality is that social networks are becoming the threads that connect us with information and with each other, and mobile devices are increasingly becoming the pipelines those threads travel on.

More than half of social media usage is already happening through mobile devices. So if your Not for Profit’s information won’t fit into those pipelines, it won’t get through to your customers.

Rolfe Larson is a US consultant and entrepreneur, the author of the book Venture Forth! and the creator of Social Impact, the award winning social enterprise app. He can contacted through his website at


Helping the helpers fund their mission…...

FrontStream Pty Ltd (FrontStream AsiaPacific)

NGO Recruitment is Australia’s not-for-profit sector recru...

NGO Recruitment

We specialise in data solutions consulting and IT profession...

DQUBE Solutions

HLB Mann Judd is a specialist Accounting and Advisory firm t...

HLB Mann Judd

More Suppliers


14 Ways in Which Blockchain Could Unleash Social Impact

Bede Hamilton

Thursday, 22nd February 2018 at 8:43 am

What Marketers Can Do to Raise the Bar for NFPs


Tuesday, 6th February 2018 at 8:42 am

Top Five Social-Media Predictions For 2018

Alecia Hancock

Wednesday, 31st January 2018 at 2:11 pm

What is on the Horizon and How it Will Change Your Life?


Wednesday, 24th January 2018 at 5:14 pm


Luke Batty Foundation to Close as Rosie Batty Steps Down

Luke Michael

Monday, 19th February 2018 at 5:37 pm

Calls to Remove ‘Blanket Religious Exemptions’ for Faith-Based Charities

Luke Michael

Friday, 16th February 2018 at 2:35 pm

Sharp Decline in People Accessing Disability Support Pension

Luke Michael

Wednesday, 21st February 2018 at 4:59 pm

Employee-Led Mutual to Deliver NDIS Services in SA

Luke Michael

Monday, 19th February 2018 at 10:54 am

One Comment

  • jeffreyt says:

    I absolutely agree with this article.

    The only way to effectively connect with GenX/GenY is through their world – and their world is the world of mobile technology.

    Mobile should be Simple, Smart. and Social.

    At GiveEasy we have developed a unique giving App that connects GenX/GenY and the Connected Generation with giving – off their credit card and through their workplace. We very much expect this App to grow the giving pie globally. We believe GiveEasy, through the use of mobile technology, is the future of giving, allowing people to give wherever and whenever they want.

    You can download GiveEasy from the AppStore. Try it to see the future of giving.

    The sentiments of this article are spot on.


Write a Reply or Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Civil Voices
pba inverse logo
Subscribe Twitter Facebook

The social sector's most essential news coverage. Delivered free to your inbox every Tuesday and Thursday morning.

You have Successfully Subscribed!