Leeds-based Diva Telecom has adopted an innovative approach to charity support inspired by the explosion in the sector of SMS viral campaigns like #icebucketchallenge and #nomakeupselfie.
The fast-growing bespoke telecoms provider has selected St Gemma’s Hospice as its first chosen charity and marked the decision by presenting them with a gifted service donation of 2500 SMS credits.
2014 was the biggest year yet for SMS text donations from mobile phones with more than £115m donated in this way and £124m forecast for 2015, according to PhonepayPlus, the regulatory body for all premium rate phone-paid services in the UK.
“We believe gifted service donations like this one have a practical role to play in helping charities and other third sector organisations make the most of text as a channel as it becomes increasingly important to effective communications strategies. The success of viral campaigns such as #icebucketchallenge has paved the way for charities to think differently about the way they generate donations and longer term support,” said Diva Telecom’s managing director, Erica Lewis.
“We are very pleased to be able to support St Gemma’s Hospice and all the work the team there do to help families dealing with life-threatening illnesses.”
Diva’s fundraising will help fund several daily costs that will help the charity operate for free, including the £24,000 per day it costs to run the service, £470 per day to care for one In-Patient in one of their wards, and the £50 for a child bereavement session for a child who is dealing with a parent or loved one’s death or illness.
St Gemma’s Hospice used the gifted SMS service to run a campaign to promote its new Little Gems store in Horsforth, which opened its doors in the summer. A discount code to use in store was sent to selected recipients on the charity’s database of local supporters.
Head of marketing communications at the charity, Nicola Woodgate said: “The SMS campaign was a new approach for us, and has proved very helpful in terms of updating our contacts database. We are grateful to Diva Telecoms for their help setting up and launching the SMS campaign and also for their on-going support.”
In addition to the gifted service donation, Diva raised an additional £320 for St Gemma’s Hospice by taking part in the Leeds Colour Run last month. “This was our very first charity activity and the 4k course through Pool Riverside Park was tough but fun,” said marketing manager Hannah O’Sullivan, who was joined by colleagues Kris Holden, Meriesha Rennalls and Ross McKane (pictured before and after the event).
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