5 ways to get involved in Giving Tuesday
Somehow, it’s nearly Halloween already, meaning the winter holiday season is fast approaching, beginning with Thanksgiving and followed closely by the consumer holidays Black Friday and Cyber Monday. However, once the “thanks” have been given, the deals have been dealt, the door busters have busted and sales have sold out, there is another holiday that can (and should) be of huge interest of nonprofits: Giving Tuesday.
Annually, the Tuesday after Thanksgiving presents a worldwide call to action for people to “help others through the gift of [your] time, donations, goods or [your] voice.” Powered by social media through rampant, international use of the hashtag #GivingTuesday, the event kicks off year-end giving and charity work. It isn’t a new and unknown holiday, either; in 2017 alone, more than $300 million was raised online, with over one million total mentions across social media platforms.
Giving Tuesday is a “global giving movement” that inspires people to take positive action throughout the world. What are you doing to tap into this incredible donation and engagement opportunity?
Keep reading, for my tips on how to get your nonprofit involved in the #GivingTuesday space.
1. Partner with the Giving Tuesday organization
If you are an official 501(c)3 charity or nonprofit with a specific campaign for Giving Tuesday, fill out the form on the Giving Tuesday website to connect with them on all the ways to get involved in the movement. Download the Giving Tuesday toolkit as a guide for planning your involvement in the holiday.
Also, make sure to use the hashtag #GivingTuesday in any and all social media content you share. Giving Tuesday, the organization, is active with this hashtag, often sharing, retweeting and favoriting content that includes it. Taking this step can help to vastly expand the reach of your organization and the impact that it can make.
2. Show your donors you care
There are several ways you can show your donors that you care about them, particularly around this time of year. First and foremost, tell your donors about your Giving Tuesday campaigns and initiatives before the day in question. It’s no secret that if done correctly, you can get your donors to do your work for you, so encourage them to tell their networks of the many good things your organization is responsible for doing leading up to Giving Tuesday, and the impact you all make together. Use the Thanksgiving dialogue to express your gratitude to them for all of their contributions to your cause.
Another idea is to throw a party to celebrate your donors from the year. It doesn’t need to be a black-tie affair; just providing some hospitality to the people who have been a part of your organization’s success can go a long way. You may even consider having a specific Giving Tuesday donation initiative at this party, represented by a progress thermometer that your donors can see and feel good about donating to.
Can’t host a party? Giving Tuesday is also a good day for a phone-based, thank-a-thon where members of your organization call and thank donors for their support.
3. Bring your volunteers together for a Giving Tuesday event
This time of year presents the perfect opportunity to host an event that brings your supporters together to make a grand, unified impact for your cause. Say your organization is charged with the mission of protecting the environment through sustainability education for kids.
Hosting a Giving Tuesday event that brings droves of supporters and their kids from your local community together to pick up trash in a local park would be an excellent way of joining the movement. Make sure to use social media to promote your event before, during and after. Also consider using traditional PR tactics such as informing your local media stations and news outlets about your event.
4. Join forces with a local business
One great way to shake things up in how your nonprofit receives donations is to partner with a local business and set up a donation-matching agreement. In this kind of Giving Tuesday drive, communicate to your audiences that for every dollar they donate, your business partner will match. Or, depending on the arrangement you have made with that business, your donors may have to reach a certain dollar amount raised in order to unlock a predetermined amount of money from your business partner. This promotes both businesses and allows your supporters’ donations to go twice as far.
5. And of course, work for those donations
There are so many ways that Giving Tuesday can prove to be beneficial to your organization. The most obvious is to encourage Giving Tuesday-prompted gifting. To set this campaign apart from your other donation efforts throughout the year, I would recommend creating a specific landing page for Giving Tuesday. Build urgency on this page throughout the day by asking for gifts that help reach a specific goal focused on one impact point of your nonprofit. Set a clear, measurable goal and create your landing page with messaging that matches your supporting content (aka, any social media posts and/or emails you’re also distributing) as a cohesive persuasion to donate.
Giving Tuesday is an internationally-recognized movement that inspires people to do some good in the world and kicks off the season of year-end giving. There are so many ways that you and your organization can be a part of this, through volunteer events that get you noticed, donor banquets that improve your donor retention or boosts in funds raised that help you do what your nonprofit does best.