Funding

Zynga’s Virtual Goods Raise Money for Japan Earthquake Relief

In this previous post, we described how Zynga has helped donate millions of dollars to charitable causes by introducing virtual goods into Farmville, FrontierVille and other games.

Gamers have enthusiastically participated in their initiatives, and purchased virtual social goods that have benefited earthquake victims, families without clean water, and children in Haiti; in total resulting in over $6 million given to charitable causes.

Now, Zynga is giving its 250 million players a chance to help towards earthquake relief efforts in Japan. Zynga has created limited edition virtual goods in FarmVille, CityVille, YoVille, FrontierVille, Zynga Poker and Cafe World, depicting a part of Japanese culture. To further provide gamers with an incentive to buy, some of the goods are designed with special powers. (for example, Farmville crops that never wither and can be harvested very quickly)

Players are already buying these limited edition goods, and 100% of purchases goes to Save The Children, who are supporting relief efforts for children affected by the Japan earthquake. Facebook is also giving away its 30% cut for purchases made using Facebook credits. This quote captures the sentiment of the gamers:

I just donated $25 and got the flag. Let’s all make a different through something we like. R.I.P to hundreds. May god bless us all to help each other and do good deeds while we are still alive. I can not bring those who died, but I can certainly save lives through my contribution. I feel good

The campaign was put together by Zynga in less than 24 hours, and is also the largest campaign launched by Zynga to date.

Here is how you can participate:
* Café World: Players can place Japanese inspired decorations in their Café to benefit the initiative.
* CityVille: Citizens can plant a limited edition sweet potato crop to feed their population and stock their restaurants.
* FrontierVille: Players can buy a limited edition Kobe cow to place in their frontier.
* FarmVille: Farmers can plant a limited edition daikon radish crop that never withers.
* Words With Friends: Players can donate directly by clicking on a Save the Children button inside the game.
* YoVille: Players can purchase homes and furniture inspired by Japanese architecture and design.
* Zynga Poker: Fans going for a royal flush can donate by purchasing access to a VIP table.
* zBar: Players can donate directly by clicking on a Save the Children button inside the bar that sits across the top of their game on Facebook.