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UNICEF ties donations, games together via mobile app

October 13, 2010

unicef-copyUNICEF is rolling out an iPhone application in conjunction with the 60th anniversary of its Trick-or-Treat campaign, letting users donate directly via their mobile device.

The organization partnered with Studiocom to develop the with applications for Apple devices and Facebook. The application is available for free download in Apple’s App Store.

“Our strategy was to create a UNICEF-branded iPhone and Facebook application in order to engage, raise awareness, and educate parents and children about U.S. Fund for UNICEF’s 60th Anniversary Trick-or-Treat for UNICEF campaign,” said Tom Spicer, senior vice president and managing director at Studiocom, Boston.

“U.S. Fund for UNICEF and Studiocom are partnering on PR initiatives to promote the apps,” he said. “UNICEF is incorporating as many mentions as possible during their anniversary for UNICEF media tour, and relying on Selena Gomez and other U.S. Fund for UNICEF spokespeople to promote it in social media.”

The United Nations Children’s Fund – UNICEF – works for children’s rights, their survival, development and protection.

Studiocom is a full-service digital agency creating renowned integrated campaigns, CRM, loyalty programs, social media strategies, virtual worlds and more for clients that include The U.S. Fund for UNICEF, Dunkin’ Donuts, Baskin-Robbins, Kimberly Clark, The Coca-Cola Co., McCormick and Nestle. 

Text for Halloween
Users send a trick-or-treat message to friends and ask them to make a $5 donation.

They can also browse information about ways to participate and how they can help fundraise on behalf of UNICEF.

Additionally, users can set up alerts to be notified as global emergencies happen.

“Mobile devices are as personal and protected as wallets, and enable higher levels of productivity and convenience every day,” Mr. Spicer said. “Parents are increasingly using their mobile devices to entertain their children. 

“Mobile provides an engaging, sharable opportunity for UNICEF to enable parents to connect with their kids, have fun with the Trick-or-Treat for UNICEF presents Jack-O-Lantern application, and potentially use the moment to teach their kids about the importance of giving back,” he said.

“Because giving can also be driven by very personal and individual factors, we also wanted to offer potential donors an immediate opportunity and resource to give through before the inspiration gets lost in the daily soup of life’s priorities.”

In addition to being able to make donations, users can virtually carve and decorate their Jack-o-Lantern with different tolls and light up and share their finished design with friends via email.

“Because Android is on pace to eclipse the iPhone, we are also considering a version for this universe,” Mr. Spicer said. “In addition, we are considering other content designed to keep potential donors engaged beyond Trick-or-Treat for UNICEF presents Jack-O-Lantern’s relevance to Halloween.”

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Rimma Kats is associate editor on Mobile Commerce Daily and Mobile Marketer. Reach her at

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