Whether it’s your first year participating in this wildly successful global day of giving or your ninth year, follow these tips to spread awareness about your organization and maximize those donations.
What is GivingTuesday, and why should my organization participate?
After the festivities of Thanksgiving and the shopping frenzy of Black Friday and Cyber Monday, GivingTuesday was established in 2012 as a day to turn that energy toward communities with radical generosity. It always falls on the Tuesday after Thanksgiving— mark your calendars for #GivingTuesday.
Over the years it has become known as “#GivingTuesday, ”a global movement for good utilizing social media to spread the word about important causes. Now it’s a day all about helping others, where everyone is encouraged to make charitable donations to nonprofits and perform everyday acts of kindness in our communities.
And it works! Greater Giving’s The State of Nonprofit Fundraising 2021 report found that 34.8 million people participated in Giving Tuesday 2020 and donated $2.47 billion— a 29% increase in participation and a 25% increase in donations! With the continuation of the pandemic, online giving is an essential fundraising platform for nonprofits and more people are looking for ways to give back.
With the whole world’s focus on giving this November 30th, don’t miss this perfect opportunity to raise funds for projects and spread awareness about your nonprofit’s critical mission.
How to get the most out of this year’s #GivingTuesday
In 2021, take your nonprofit’s GivingTuesday campaign to the next level by increasing awareness, engagement, and donations. And remember, hashtag #GivingTuesday in your posts to get in on the hype!
1. Start early. Don’t wait until the day of or week before to let the community know about your nonprofit’s #GivingTuesday campaign. Create content for social media ahead of time, with brief but powerful information about your organization’s mission and impact. Include GivingTuesday reminders in all communication leading up to the day, and be sure to use the #GivingTuesday hashtag on your posts. Look here for social media tips in the build-up to the big day!
2. Bring partners into your campaign. Reach out to your current donors and suggest hosting their own #GivingTuesday fundraiser on their social media accounts. Ask businesses who have supported your nonprofit in the past to advertise your #GivingTuesday donation page to their customers, employees, and business contacts. This day is a great opportunity for sponsors and donors to jump in and donate a portion of their profits before the end of the year!
Find out if your community has a centralized #GivingTuesday movement, and get registered right away so local groups can help promote your cause. Cross-promote with other nonprofits in your community— many donors looking to give may want to share their generosity across multiple cause areas. GivingTuesday is all about spreading good, and supporting other organizations as well as yours will encourage that spirit. It’s not a zero-sum game!
3. Set a goal. GivingTuesday campaigns with clear goals raise more funds, and many nonprofits find that those announced goals are not just met, but exceeded. Showing donors exactly where their money will go and the tangible effect it will have can inspire big giving. GivingTuesday can also help to kick off year-end giving—try setting a smaller goal as part of a larger end-of-year campaign. After giving once and seeing the good your mission causes in the world, donors may get inspired to keep giving!
4. Make your campaign—and giving to it—accessible. On your dedicated #GivingTuesday donation page, suggest donation amounts that are realistic for people across the economic spectrum. Small donations can add up quickly toward meeting your goals. Making it easy to donate with highly visible links, and offering simple Text-to-Donate options, will generate more participation from those looking for a cause to which to give.
Remember, a successful GivingTuesday campaign also drives new traffic to nonprofit websites and social media accounts, so keep your mission and successful programs front and center. Invite participants to share their generosity—and your cause—on their own social media pages, and harness the incredible power of peer-to-peer giving
5. Follow up with donors afterwards! GivingTuesday is only the start of a relationship. Thank your donors, and even those who simply shared your cause. In addition to heartfelt appreciation, try asking participants to request a match for their donation through their employer. Many companies offer generous matching gifts benefits that often go unclaimed!
6. Use your new donor leads to build a long-term relationship. After everything is said and done, share the success of your campaign and showcase the impact it will have on achieving your nonprofit’s mission with powerful images and video. Include donors in these incredible accomplishments—it’s all thanks to them!
Prioritizing quality over quantity in communications with donors means greater engagement down the line, and avoids fatiguing donors at a time when many other causes are asking for their generosity. Follow up in the new year with new goals to inspire continued enthusiasm, and this single day of giving could lead to a lifelong relationship!
Remember, it’s free to participate in GivingTuesday, and the fabulous #GivingTuesday website offers tons of additional resources to help launch a successful campaign. Check out GivingTuesday’s toolkit for nonprofits and community organizations, where you can find a workbook, templates for social media posts and calendar invites, and communication strategies. These resources are a great way to help your nonprofit seize the spirit of generosity, discover new advocates for your cause, move the world to change for the better, and tell your unique and powerful story!