•   over 8 years ago

Viral Facebook fundraising app

I want to capitalize on technology that people already use to increase fundraising power for urgently needed disease control. The ice bucket challenge met huge success but viral fundraising success is unpredictable. I propose a facebook app which leverages and packages viral fundraising tactics. The app is currently needed to raise money for massively underfunded Ebola containment, but it could later be used to raise money for any underfunded and urgent cause.

The concept:

1. The user signs up for the app and pledges to give $x, but only if 3 friends are willing to also pledge money.
2. The app posts on the user's wall, asking for friends to sign up for the app and pledge money.
3. When 3 friends have signed up, the user is alerted that their money is due, and directed to a page with charity donation links. This notification is sent every day until the user has paid.
4. The 3 friends now each start over at step 1.
5. The app notifies you for every $100 that your friends and friends of friends (etc.) collect.

Why this would work better than other fundraising techniques:

1. It would capitalize on the virality of recruiting multiple friends from every individual recruited.
2. People are more likely to give to causes they see their friends giving to.
3. People are more likely give publicly than privately (eg. Ice bucket challenge).
4. A tracking website is a user perk and lets users see how many people their donation has spread to.
5. Continued positive feedback from notifications will cause continued user engagement and awareness.

Why Ebola right now?

1. We know how to treat people and contain this epidemic – we just need the money to buy supplies.
2. If we don't contain it, it is only a matter of time before it comes to the US on a larger scale, and breakouts will be continuing worldwide.
3. Doctors and aid workers are traveling to Africa and putting their lives on the line without proper equipment or adequate protection, causing unnecessary deaths of crucial first responders.
4. If more isn't done to contain this, the death toll is predicted to reach 11.4 million.
5. Catching the epidemic early is by far the most cost-effective way to prevent massive human suffering.
6. All the money will go directly to prevention and treatment, as opposed to research which may not help people for decades to come.

Minimum app requirements:

1. The user must be able to specify how much money to donate
2. The user must be able to donate publicly, privately (visible to friends only), or anonymously
3. The user must be able to publicize donation amount or keep it private
4. The user must be able to specify the threshold for success notifications (including no notifications)
5. The app needs good copy and eye catching images
6. The app must post without being spammy (multiple different message formats)
7. The app must keep track of who donates, how much, and which people they recruited
8. The app needs a tie-in website with (at minimum): a donation page (or a donor redirect page), a total donations counter, and an about page

Needs: back end programmer, someone with experience in Facebook's API, a designer


  •   •   over 8 years ago

    The problem with your invite system is that Facebook's Developer roadmap, (which is pretty strict, not a loose schedule) indicates they are changing the policies regarding Facebook Apps' ability to get the friends list of a user. Starting the next 90 days for newly created apps you'll have to go through a rigorous review process to be allowed to get a user's friends list. But your app seems slightly different in that it posts directly to the first user's wall, instead of posting to the user and the other friends' walls.
    Still it might be hard to configure the 3 other friends have also donated portion. Do you have thoughts on how you would technically do this?

  •   •   over 8 years ago

    I see what you mean about needing a user's friends list, but I can't find any information from facebook's roadmap. The developer wiki seems to be down, and the platform migrations page doesn't say anything about those changes. Do you know when the policy change starts, and if all apps will have to be re-approved or if older ones are grandfathered in? Regardless, an approval process probably wouldn't be a huge stumbling block. We would just need to submit it for approval after the hackathon was over, its very unlikely to be rejected. The rules of the contest don't seem to require that the app is approved/available to the public at the time of judgment, at least how I'm reading them. There are also alternate solutions to get around it. This could be a website with facebook integration instead of a full-on facebook app, or users could be prompted to provide the name or username of the person who referred them?i

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