This NYC Startup Lets You Make Money for Your Favorite Cause, Just By Downloading Apps



Mind you, they’re apps you’d no doubt download, anyway, so why not play it forward, especially since there’s no donation involved, nor is there an added cost?

CauseTap is a for-profit app discovery platform that benefits nonprofit causes.

Think app discovery meets social impact.

Founded by marketing and technology industry veterans with a conscience, including recent California transplant Andrea Nylund, CauseTap delivers a double bottom line solution that provides cost-effective, meaningful results for app publishers, while empowering consumers to support their favorite causes. And the processes are transparent so that all participants can track the impact of their actions.

Causes earn money when supporters install free and paid apps. The app developers pay per incremental install. Nylund, cofounder, recent LA transplant explains how it works – to the benefit of all involved.

Tell us about the service.

CauseTap is an app discovery platform with social impact. A core component is the consumer-facing CauseTap mobile app that lets you download a variety of popular and relevant mobile apps to benefit your favorite causes. There’s no donation involved and no added cost.

How is it different?

CauseTap brings the power of cause marketing and friend-raising to the app marketplace. Many refer to CauseTap as the Amazon Smile for apps. However, in contrast to Amazon Smile, the amount generated for causes through CauseTap is not dependent on the purchase price of an app. Causes benefit even when participants download free apps.

The funding for causes comes from participating app makers who pay an ad fee per install of their paid and free apps. The lion’s share of ad revenue goes to causes that users designate. Activity and impact are entirely transparent to participating users, nonprofits and apps.

Unlike most cause marketing campaigns that simply allocate a percentage of sales to causes, CauseTap leverages consumer engagement with causes to provide an engaging way to discover popular and relevant apps. Each cause represents a shared-value community, offering a unique app discovery experience. Users can browse apps recommended by their cause and that are popular among like-minded supporters. All types of apps are available – from games and entertainment to education and utility.

Andrea Nylund Profile

Andrea Nylund

Which features are the most popular with parents?

CauseTap enables parents and others with limited time and financial resources to help support causes they care about, at no extra cost. With a wide range of apps of interest to both adults and children, CauseTap provides a new way for families to support causes by doing what they already do: download apps.

CauseTap is the mobile complement to a school bake sale or walk/run for a cure. Families can easily use the app to rally support from friends and neighbors for their cause, and track community impact in real time.

What market are you attacking and how big is it?

CauseTap is addressing the mobile app install market, estimated by eMarketer to be between $2.6 billion and $4.3 billion in 2014. CauseTap provides an alternative to traditional mobile advertising for user acquisition that engages consumers through the causes they care about.

What is the business model?

CauseTap is a for-profit app discovery platform that benefits nonprofit causes.

Users of the CauseTap mobile app select a cause to support and discover popular and relevant apps. Participating app makers pay per install of their free and paid apps. CauseTap collects the ad fees and redistributes revenues, as unrestricted funds, to causes that users designate. 60% of the gross ad revenues generated are paid to causes. This is lower than the 60%+ most ad networks pay to app publishers for banner and interstitial ad placement, making CauseTap’s gross margin better than industry averages.

From your data, which are some of the most popular causes that New Yorkers like to support?

New Yorkers are enthusiastic supporters of New York-based nonprofits, such as New York Cares, DoSomething.org, Green Schools Alliance, Library For All, Save the Children, and Keep A Child Alive. Nonprofits such as ALS Association and Kiva also have a strong following.

What are the milestones that you plan to achieve within six months?

Currently, CauseTap is available as a free download on Google Play. Over the next six months, we will introduce the app on iOS. We will continue to grow our user base via nonprofit support networks, social sharing, and through our marketing partnership with Sprint.

If you could be put in touch with one investor in the New York community who would it be and why?

Eniac Ventures is a seed venture firm investing exclusively in mobile technologies The founders are successful serial entrepreneurs with in-depth knowledge in our field. Their investment goals are in line with our objectives. We work with one of their portfolio companies, and it seems there would be a good cultural fit as well.

Why did you launch in New York?

The creative energy and first-mover attitude in New York are exciting and key to accelerating our venture. We have incredible access to investors, partners, nonprofits, and a skilled talent pool. New York is the place to be for ad tech, and there’s a growing community of “for profit, for good” companies.

What’s your favorite NYC winter spot?

I just relocated from Los Angeles and still love any place by the coast, even during the winter. In the city, I enjoy hanging out at cafes like the one at McNally Jackson bookstore and L’Albero dei Gelati in Brooklyn where I live.

Cause Selection ALS

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