Goodwill Industries of Greater New York and Northern New Jersey (Astoria) recently engaged in an exclusive partnership with the popular ride-sharing app Uber. The two organizations provided New Yorkers with an opportunity transport their gently used items to a nearby Goodwill retail store without having to step foot inside a subway.
Called #UberSpringCleaning, Uber drivers were available to pick up donations in Manhattan on May 3 and drop them off at any Goodwill store in the same borough from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Due to popular demand, drivers continued to pick up donations for an additional two hours. By 2 p.m., two of the stores could no longer take any more donations, as their production areas were completely full. More than 750 pickups were made over the course of the event.
To begin the process, donors downloaded the Uber app on their phone. Once a specific driver was confirmed, the user saw an estimated time of arrival on the app. When the driver arrived, the donor received a text message alerting them to bring the bagged donations to the car. Goodwill staff provided contact information so that drivers could call stores when they would be nearby.
As a result of the Uber drive, the Goodwill collected more than 2,200 bags of donations. This translates to about 55,375 pounds of clothing, shoes and accessories and more than $42,000 in retail sales. To thank everyone for their participation, Uber NYC provided a promo code for $25 off an initial Uber trip.
One significantly popular element to this campaign was the promotion of the hashtag#UberSpringCleaning on social media channels including Twitter, Instagram and Facebook. In fact, Uber decided to extend the event hours based on a high influx of tweets requesting pickups.
“We were very impressed with the conversation that both Uber NYC and Goodwill NY-NJ held with folks on Twitter,” said the Goodwill’s Director of Communications Jose Medellin “[It showed] true customer service and communications at work.”