Giving Tuesday is coming up – and fast. If you’ve started feeling fall come around the corner then you’ve got just enough time to plan your Giving Tuesday campaign.
Giving Tuesday has become a major holiday in the nonprofit world – one that has done wonders for causes worldwide. In 2017, Giving Tuesday generated $180 million in just 24 hours.
Most nonprofits have jumped on board by creating strategic campaigns and using their social media channels with the campaign tag #GivingTuesday. Giving Tuesday is a great day for nonprofits to reach new funders and donors that are energized to give back during the holiday season.
Is your Giving Tuesday campaign going to stand out?
Here are a few ways to increase the amount of exposure your organization gets on November 27th.
Giving Tuesday should be treated just like any other fundraising campaign. The further out you can plan, the more prepared you will be. Set goals for your campaign, including not only the total amount you aim to raise, but how many new donors you’d like to connect with?
Make sure that you also plan on positively impacting volunteer recruitment and increasing the value of your program. Finally, consider prospect growth as a key KPI! How many email newsletter sign-ups will you get? Which marketing platforms will have what goals? Creating SMART goals is an important step to Giving Tuesday success.
While this event is typically featured on the Tuesday after Thanksgiving (this year on November 27), it doesn’t have to just be a one-day campaign. Use Giving Tuesday as an opportunity to build full-year momentum. Send out a countdown until Giving Tuesday, so your followers and supporters are constantly reminded.
Getting the most from a Giving Tuesday campaign is about helping supporters be prepared – and remember to save something in their checking accounts for your organization, rather than blowing it all on Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, or Cyber Monday. Better yet – find a way to include your organization in all of those others days as well!
Maybe every cashier at a large box store could ask every customer for a $1 donation to your organization on Friday. Or a local pet store could give 40% of proceeds off any collar sales to your animal shelter on Saturday. Or have an online sale yourself on your organization’s t-shirts on Monday.
Take advantage of the days people do know to maximize on your own fundraising before Giving Tuesday even arrives!
Your organization and your mission is one of a kind – so show it! Giving Tuesday is a day to stand out, and create something that could have the potential of going viral (even if it’s just in your own town!). A lot of other organizations will be fighting for the same attention from the same supporters, so your organization needs to show it is different.
Go with a new idea that seemed out of the realm of your normal campaigns and keep it relevant to your organization, but look for new ways to get people’s attention by thinking about what would get you excited or talking about an organization.
Is there a competition you could create, or a hashtag you’d like people to use? Do you have a new initiative you are launching, new volunteer impact numbers to share?
Think big and create buzz around your Giving Tuesday campaign.
Give Everyone a Role
Beyond your board, who else is the biggest advocate for your nonprofit organization? Your employees, volunteers, and current donors! Give each of them a role to feel involved in the campaign – from your Finance Director to the HR Manager and everyone in between.
For those that aren’t typically involved with the external facing side of fundraising, create steps and guidelines and let them get involved in whatever level they feel comfortable. Make it easy for supporters by drafting sample emails, social media posts, and links. Help them feel inspired and encouraged to be part of the event by making it fun, challenging, and rewarding.
Throw a work party and keep a countdown and fundraiser tracker in the break room, so everyone can see how much has been raised and how much time they still have left to help out. It will bring everyone together and allow them to all feel on the same page.
The main point of a Giving Tuesday campaign is exposure. It’s been mostly categorized as an almost entirely online campaign, utilizing social media and email newsletters to get the word out.
As with all social media, the more you post and use your own generated hashtag (along with #GivingTuesday and #GivingTuesday2018), the more exposure you’ll receive and the more your followers will see it and potentially feel compelled to give. Make sure you’re constantly asking your followers to give.
Invite them to your Facebook fundraiser, tag them on social media, and provide personalized emails following the newsletter blast. Adding “touches” can help supporters feel as if you’ve personalized the campaign to them and are now inspired to give.
The end of any fundraising campaign should be followed by a thank you to all those that have supported your nonprofit. Sending a general email can work, but your ability to personalize will be your strength in keeping donors and volunteers coming back.
Give them a shout out on social media, include all of their names in your newsletter (people love scrolling to see their names!) and help them feel part of the amount you raised and impact it will make.
So how did it go? Did you make your goal? What did you do well and what posts got the most traction? What hour did your donations come in? What could you have done better, or done more of? Did you see something another organization did that you’d like to try next year? Make note of it!
While you should be hesitant to copy exactly, feel free to be inspired yourself at how other organization’s completed their Giving Tuesday campaign and how you could take that information to make yours stronger next year.