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Local company launches URL shortner to raise money for charities

Edeems, an social media marketing company based in Annapolis, has developed an innovative and pain-free way for Internet users to make charitable donations all with just a few clicks of their mouse. The company has teamed with the National Wildlife Federation (NWF) to drive charitable donations through online purchases.

Edeems' innovative URL shortening service is modeled on the typical B2B affiliate marketing developed by Internet retailers like Amazon.com in which website and blog owners post ads on their site and a recieve a percentage of any merchandise sold through those links. Instead of posting ads, Edeems provides users with shortened URLs  they can post on their Facebook, Twitter or other social media page. Now, the company has pushed the B2B affiliate marketing to the charitable giving level by allowing anyone to shorten links to products or services online and earn affiliate commissions.

Users can opt to keep the cash back rewards they have earned or have the proceeds donated to their charity of choice using a specially shortened URL. 

Composed of thousands of online merchants that pay referral fees, Edeems places an innovative spin on traditional fundraising. For example, a member who elects to donate to NWF finds a deal on Shoes.com, creates a link using http://nwf.honr.it and shares the shortened link with friends and family. As a result, based on the affiliate commissions provided by Shoes.com, NWF receives a charitable donation of $11.70 for every $100 purchase.

"We are excited to launch the Edeems platform while simultaneously providing a unique fundraising tool for large charitable organizations such as National Wildlife Federation," says Brenden Salta, CEO of Edeems, Inc. "Given the recent oil spill disaster and the economic downturn, this is a crucial time for National Wildlife Federation and other charitable organizations to find new, user-friendly channels of giving. Millions of links are posted on social media sites like Twitter and Facebook, or personal blogs daily without any rewards. We wanted to create a way to not only reward individuals, but also offer a way to give back to the community."

To raise awareness and increase charitable donations to NWF, supporters are encouraged to visit http://nwf.honr.it before shopping online or recommending a product to a friend. Edeems' charitable service, honr.it, donates 90 percent of affiliate commissions to NWF, or any charity a member selects. In this case, donations would go to NWF to benefit its causes throughout the U.S., from protecting imperiled wildlife and its habitat in the Gulf and across the nation.

"Edeems not only gives National Wildlife Federation supporters another avenue with which to raise awareness and funds, but also provides a way to reach audiences who may not normally be inclined to donate to charity," says Anne Senft, vice president of membership and online marketing at NWF. "We are excited to embark on a new means of giving that will help us continue to support our mission to inspire Americans to protect wildlife for future generations."

The company plans to introduce more shortened URLs for a variety of charities in the coming weeks. Plans are also in the works to launch a shortened URL service for community-based fundraising. Local fire departments, schools, and other community organizations will be able to sign up for the service and receive up to 50 percent of affiliate commissions generated by the URL, says Salta.

Source: Brenden Salta, Edeems
Writer: Walaika Haskins

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