Oxfam taps holiday shoppers and travelers with geolocation campaign

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Nonprofit teams up with xAd to drive festive donations

If you’re killing time on your smartphone over the Thanksgiving travel period, or out shopping for the holidays, an ad from Oxfam America might pop up on your screen. 

The poverty, hunger and social injustice nonprofit has partnered with location-based marketing firm xAd to drive donations as part of its annual Oxfam Unwrapped program. Using geo-location technology, it hopes to target Americans in a charitable mindset, while they shop or travel for the holidays. 

The Oxfam Unwrapped program encourages individuals to make donations as meaningful gifts that go to impoverished communities around the world. This is the first time Oxfam has run a mobile campaign of this kind as part of the program, which is in its 10th year. 

Xad’s technology is enabled in over 30,000 mobile apps and collects location data based on when users download and use them. The company is then able to serve ads according to location.This campaign will target people at PATH stations, bus shelters, airports, grocery stores, malls and shopping centers across major U.S. cities including Boston; Washington, D.C.; San Francisco; New York; and Los Angeles.

Josh Silva, senior marketing officer at Oxfam America, said these places were chosen as targets for the ads because the nonprofit wanted "people to think of Oxfam Unwrapped when they’re thinking of gift-giving this season."

Xad worked with Oxfam on a pro bono basis to drive donations following May's devastating earthquakes in Nepal. The activity raised $10,000 to help people in Nepal and offer shelter supplies for about 1,000 families, according to xAd

According to Silva, xAd said engagement for the targeted ad campaign was pretty high so far, but they won’t know the full scope of the work until the campaign finishes on New Year’s Eve. 


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