send a singer

I found this a little late for this year, but I’m really excited about the Send-a-Singer project that Bryan Miller blogged about back at the beginning of December.


Bryan is a strategist at WWAV Rapp Collins in London, and they developed this very inventive, yet charmingly simple campaign that lets you donate your company’s holiday card budget to the UK homelessness nonprofit Crisis. And in return, you get to send a video e-card of groups of people singing carols — all people who have been helped by Crisis in the past year.

I love anything that personalizes charitable donations like this — especially in such a fun, almost whimsical (but far from flippant) way.

I also love that the donations are set high (the base “carol” is available for £3,000, or about $6,000US), so that corporations can really make an impact with their donations.

However, it does remind me how successful Beth Kanter was last fall at her experiment in micro-philanthropy that ultimately raised enough money to send two Cambodian students to college.

Having seen first-hand the power of this sort of micro-philanthropy, I wonder how a send-a-singer type of campaign could be scaled to appeal for smaller donations, so that individuals could send cards (and not just holiday cards, but birthday cards, or cards announcing the amount of the gift that somebody just made in your name).

I wonder how low you could go? How inexpensively could you produce such e-cards, but still make them compelling to a broad audience? Or does this not scale down well? Would this only work with large donations and big email lists?

I suspect that it could work well for any number of charities, and the idea could certainly be adapted to work for performing cultural organizations like symphonies and theaters.

How would you adapt this idea for your nonprofit, given the chance? What sorts of technological skills and/or hardware do you think you would need to make it happen?


One response to “send a singer

  1. Interesting idea.

    Still plugging away raising money for the Cambodian kids – there’s 1488 others that the Sharing Foundation touches ..

    But, I got some help. Someone I met on Facebook. Pretty interesting

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