Gadgets and Widgets and Tech, Oh My!

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With fall appeal and Giving Tuesday season upon us, does your nonprofit dream of finding a technology platform that:

  • Designs your fundraising plan for you?
  • Writes terrific donor-centered communications?
  • Makes sure you exceed your goals on Giving Tuesday?
  • Makes coffee or tea for you?

Sorry, we don’t have any of those. However, we do know of some gadgets and widgets that might give your nonprofit a small edge in the fundraising tech department – or at least add a little fun to your program.

DAF Direct

The DAF Direct widget is easily integrated onto a page of your nonprofit’s website. It allows existing DAF (donor advised fund) clients of Fidelity Charitable, Schwab Charitable, or BNY Mellon to easily recommend a grant to your nonprofit with just a few keystrokes. Learn more about DAF Direct and see some examples of it in action. (Free.)

DipJar

DipJarDipJar is a futuristic-looking gadget, branded with your own logo, that allows your nonprofit to collect donations. You plug it in, set a specific amount for gifts, and each donor simply “dips” their credit card – et voilà, donation accomplished! While the downside is that limited donor contact information is collected, some nonprofits have created workarounds, such as matching up the credit card holder’s name to the guest list at the event where the device is used. Also handy at events is setting up multiple DipJars with varying donation amounts, which increases your up-front investment but stimulates some donors to give more while preserving that critical “frictionless” experience. Add-ons are available, such as the “DipCast” display that projects a running total of how much has been raised. Visit the DipJar website for information, success stories, and videos that show how it’s done. (Pricing: $399 for the first year, $99/year after that, plus 6%+17¢ per transaction.) 

Cryptocurrency Donation WidgetsCryptocurrency

Maybe cryptocurrency such as Bitcoin is a bubble akin to 17th-century European tulip mania, or maybe it’s the digital gold of the future. In either case, some of your donors are holding crypto, and some of it is a highly appreciated asset comparable to securities or real estate. Why not invest a little time to make it super-easy for donors to give Bitcoin or other crypto? Services such as Coinbase and bitpay make it convenient for the blockchain-unhip, and there’s no fee to your nonprofit up to a certain (large) amount. Here’s a good discussion of the tax implications for donors that includes this solid advice for nonprofits: “Extreme fluctuations in cryptocurrency valuations makes it a risky investment for nonprofit organizations to hold onto cryptocurrency. Most organizations that want to avoid the up-and-downs of accepting cryptocurrency donations use a third-party processor to immediately convert cryptocurrency donations to cash.” (Free up to a very large donation.)

GolfStatus

Not every nonprofit runs a fundraising golf tournament, but if yours does, you might want to check out this platform. It automates tasks like player registration, event promotion, sponsorship management, hole assignments, and live scoring. And for now, there’s no upfront cost for nonprofits – your nonprofit has the opportunity to sell a leaderboard “technology sponsorship” and if it sells, GolfStatus assesses a flat fee; if it doesn’t sell, your nonprofit pays nothing. How can this be? Well, GolfStatus also directly serves golf courses and golfers. These additional revenue sources are essentially subsidizing costs for nonprofits. Go to the main GolfStatus website and click “for nonprofits” for more info. (No up-front cost; flat fee of $1,500 if the technology sponsorship sells.)

Finally, surprise! We did find some cool technology that makes tea. If you’re a tea-drinker who travels in the U.S., and you’re tired of drinking coffee-flavored tea in your hotel room, we know you’ll appreciate it! No one can properly do mission-related work fueled by coffee-flavored tea. ($34.99.)

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