Anthea Iva

Troy Muir

Global Director — Digital Experience and Channels, Movember

Movember’s integration of Artificial Intelligence (AI) into it’s fund-raising efforts is not a mere technological advancement; it is a game-changer that has generated significant financial returns for us but also genuinely improved the experience for our supporters.

In 2023, after a successful 2022 pilot in the Australian market, we significantly increased our AI-driven activities worldwide. The AI we employ is not a standalone autonomous system; it is a collaborative tool that augments with our human support operators (or “Oppies” as we call them). When a supporter sends a text, the AI generates a response, which is then reviewed by an Oppie. This human touch ensures that every interaction is aligned with Movember’s voice and values. Moreover, the feedback and edits from our staff continuously refine the AI’s learning process, enhancing its conversational abilities and accuracy.

Each of our global markets benefits from a specially trained AI. These systems are not generic; they are tailored to understand and replicate the language and colloquialisms specific to each region. This customisation allows authentic communication, mirroring the way we naturally converse with our community.

The impact of this AI-human partnership has been profound. We’ve been able to conduct over 50,000 unique and genuinely supportive conversations with our fundraisers around the world, all while maintaining a lean human support team. This scalability and efficiency would not be possible without AI.

Beyond fundraising, AI is also streamlining our operations across various departments. Our creative studio, legal and web engineering teams are now equipped with AI assistants. These tools take on repetitive and low-value tasks, freeing our staff to tackle complex issues and engage in creative problem-solving — areas where the human element is irreplaceable.

AI has quickly become an invaluable asset across several fronts at Movember, enhancing our user experience and expanding our toolkit for effective and efficient work. I believe the role that AI can play in accelerating not-for-profit impact and income capabilities is nothing short of profound if thoughtfully deployed. 

Maisa Lopes Gomes

Head of Digital Fundraising, Cerebral Palsy Alliance

 Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning (ML) and even Generative AI (Gen AI) are not new. Most organisations have been using different types of AI in some form for several years — from Facebook Ads targeting to customer service chatbots and data modelling for prospecting and cost-savings. 

2023 was a big year for AI with the mainstream adoption of the easy-to-use ChatGPT tool. ChatGPT is an excellent starting point for ideation and a reference for optimisation, but it’s not
a silver bullet. The precision of ChatGPT can vary depending on the platform you use, and ‘hallucinations’ can occur when the AI creates a new answer to best respond your questions, with inaccurate information.

Technical terminology is often daunting. But understanding how this technology works at a basic level will lead to a wider use of AI/ML towards ethical and more efficient fundraising. At Cerebral Palsy Alliance (CPA), we’re testing the latest AI technologies to achieve two main goals: 1. Improved audience targeting in conjunction with existing segmentation and propensity modelling to optimise ROI; 2. Build productivity broadly in our processes, the key opportunities being planning and content development. This is being implemented in a more organic and informal way.

As our current data segmentation and scoring models are very detailed and well tested under our programs, there’s little room for AI to provide ‘quick wins’, such as lowering costs for appeals with improved targeting, or predicting RG attritions. AI then provides an opportunity to test and explore innovative ways to grow and achieve our goals.

As a productivity tool, we have been playing with AI to support faster planning, for example, to assist with the development of Donor Personas and supporter journeys. Another common use is reviewing existing copy and exploring opportunities to optimise. 

We’re excited about the ongoing developments with AI broadly and it will no doubt be an increasingly important component of our future fundraising and technology strategies. 

Mamta Bhatt

Director of Strategy & Delivery, Parachute Digital

 AI captured everyone’s imagination in 2023, but it’s misleading to say we are only now integrating AI into fundraising. Got a chatbot? That’s AI. Run a lookalike audience campaign on Meta? AI. Used Canva to generate an image? They have AI, too. We have been incorporating AI into our fundraising for years now — and so has everyone, really.

But if we’re talking about what’s permeating everyone’s consciousness in terms of AI, namely ChatGPT and its image counterpart, Dall-E, we have dabbled… and I have some concerns. Our team has used it to test banners and ad images, subject lines for emails and headlines for social ads. We’ve used it to code pages and synthesise data and reports. Some have used it for longer copy prompts. It’s a great time-saver and we have gotten some good learnings to optimise our campaigns.

What holds me back is how unconsciously we seem to be doing it, and the wider implications of using AI like ChatGPT. There are hidden dangers of ChatGPT — from how it was conceived via Kenyans being paid $2 an hour to sustain serious trauma weeding through negative content, to how some people are using it right now, including some horrendous sexual violence content. 

Do we want to promote and use something that has been/is being used for nefarious purposes? Do we want to give it more info to get smarter and gain more traction? Are you OK with aligning yourself to this technology? Our donors are also smart, so if we’re inauthentically showing an AI-generated image or using it too much, there’s a credibility risk that worries me. Still, AI is integral to fundraisers — we have been using it unconsciously for years already, and we need to grow with the technology. But while it can be great, I’m imploring my team, and implore others as well, to be more conscious in how, when, and why they use certain types of AI — and what that means beyond making our life easier. 

Join Troy, Maisa and Mamta in their panel session – AI for fundraising – understand it, embrace itat F&P Digi.Raise, which will take place in Sydney on 1&2 May, 2024.