While futuristic technology usually conjures up images of over-the-top gadgets, users don’t always need astonishing special effects to be drawn into a brand experience. Sometimes the simplest, most familiar activities can be the most satisfying.
In the case of non-profit relief organization Misereor, based in Aachen, Germany, a simple but elegant interactive donation process netted a gratifying user experience. And by using connected technology, Misereor opened the door to creating an ongoing relationship.
The group, which relies on donated funds to fight poverty and social injustice around the world, built its “Social Swipe” idea on the insight that 40% of European payments were made by credit card. While Misereor had created successful coin-operated billboards – drop a few coins into an interactive display and see the coin roll through several aid scenarios – its leaders wondered if a credit card-enabled campaign could create even bigger returns.
The Social Swipe campaign, created along with Misereor’s agency, Kolle Rebbe in Hamburg, Germany, was a series of interactive video posters designed to generate donations of 2 euros each. As the credit card was swiped, it triggered an interactive video experience in which the credit card appeared to cut a rope binding the hands of a Filipino child or slice a loaf of bread for a family in Peru.
“All processes connected with the donation had to be synchronized,” explained Sascha Hanke, Kolle Rebbe’s executive creative director. “When the card is swiped, a secure process quickly authenticates it and, in a split second, activates a film sequence on screen.”
With installations at international airports in Hamburg and Amsterdam, the posters generated 3,000 euros in their first month. Using the connectedness of credit cards to extend the campaign, Misereor attached a small note on donors’ statements, encouraging them to turn the one-time gift into a monthly one. Misereor reports that the number of consumers who gave three or more donations jumped by 23% during the campaign, compared to the same period a year earlier.
“These things are more expensive than a normal donation box,” Kolle Rebbe’s Public Relations Manager Thomas Stritz said. “But in the end it is not only about the money collected directly with these installations, it is about awareness. Videos are shared, pictures are taken and comments and articles are written.”