The biggest day in fundraising is coming up on December 3. And if you’re like millions of other fundraisers, you’re probably looking for ways to make a real impact with your Giving Tuesday strategy this year.
Giving Tuesday is a one-day event. But that doesn’t mean your entire communications strategy can consist of one or two emails the day of!
After all, galas and 5K runs are one-day events too. But you still build a robust communications pipeline to support them.
You need to take a similar approach with your Giving Tuesday strategy. A multi-touch, multi-channel approach is essential. And if you can tie Giving Tuesday into other fundraising initiatives, that’s even better!
So, whether you’re a Giving Tuesday veteran, or launching a campaign for the first time, use these ten pieces of advice to build your Giving Tuesday strategy!
1. Use the Giving Tuesday Brand
We’re not re-inventing the wheel here. Like your other fundraising campaigns, communications for Giving Tuesday should feel like parts of a whole. It should also be clear that these messages are about Giving Tuesday, not one of your other initiatives.
Integrating the existing #GivingTuesday brand into your communications is the most effective way to do it. You don’t need to come up with a brand-new brand for your campaign!
Givingtuesday.org makes this easy for fundraisers. They provide a toolkit with logos, email templates, and other resources that make it easy to apply the existing #GivingTuesday brand to your outreach. Use these in your emails, social media posts, and all other communications.
2. Update Your Donation Page
Nearly all Giving Tuesday donations will come from online donors. So, it’s important that every touch feels cohesive and part of the same campaign. Your donation page is no exception.
But you don’t need to create a separate donation page just for Giving Tuesday.
Instead, update your main donation page with a Giving Tuesday header. This will tie the experience together for donors. You can revert this page back to normal after Giving Tuesday.
3. Make it Easy to Give
It should be easy for donors to give, no matter how they prefer to do so. Many third-party fundraising platforms are designed to do exactly this. They can be useful for processing many small Giving Tuesday donations.
But, a word of warning. While it may be easiest for donors to give directly through a third-party, you may not be able to collect their information this way. If your Giving Tuesday strategy is focused on the long-term, you need to direct donors to your website.
So, take steps to make the process as easy as possible once a donor lands on your donation page. Make sure your site is mobile-friendly, loads quickly, and offers several payment options.
And remember to keep messaging on your giving pages short and sweet. Don’t overload donors with new information. Focus on getting them through the door as smoothly as possible.
4. #GivingTuesday and Social Media
Social media has driven #GivingTuesday since its inception in 2012. In fact, roughly 30 percent of all money raised on Giving Tuesday last year was collected through Facebook!
The social nature of #GivingTuesday can help you reach a wider audience with your message. It’s one thing when your organization advocates for itself. But your message speaks even louder when others see their friends, family, and peers posting about the difference you’re making.
It’s important to create content that is highly engaging and shareable when building your social strategy. Your posts should get your audience excited about your work and encourage them to spread the word about an important cause.
5. Recruit Social Ambassadors
If you need some help getting your message out on social media, ask your most loyal and engaged donors to serve as social ambassadors on #GivingTuesday.
Provide them with some content and ask them to post to their page on behalf of your organization. The people in their network probably have some of the same characteristics as your donors. So, this can be a great way to find new supporters who fit your ideal donor profile.
Rallying volunteers and other outsiders to share your message can improve your reach, influence, and manpower. If time and personnel are limited, these social ambassadors can help you fill in any gaps in your Giving Tuesday strategy.
And don’t forget to ask your staff, board of directors, and others within your organization to help spread your message online!
6. Share Progress
Your nonprofit would not be able to see your mission through without the help of your donors. So, keep them up to date on your progress and the impact you are making with the funds your raise.
Invite your audience to celebrate your shared success as you hit specific milestones. Of course, you will want to report if you meet or exceed your monetary goals. But there are several other milestones that can be more meaningful for donors.
For example, let donors know how many more people contributed on Giving Tuesday this year. Then, thank them for helping your nonprofit reach more people with your message.
And when you do report on fundraising totals, make sure you tie it to something tangible. It’s not important that you raised $5,000 or $50,000 on Giving Tuesday this year. The impact of that money on your mission is what matters most!
So, tell donors how you will use those funds to reach your goals and thank donors for making it possible.
7. Match Gifts
Matching a donor’s gift reinforces your nonprofit’s dedication to the cause. It gives donors the opportunity to double or triple their investment.
Donors who are deeply connected to your cause will be excited they can multiply the impact they will have on your mission.
According to Double the Donation, 84 percent of donors say they’re more likely do donate when a match is offered. One third of donors said they would give a larger gift if a match is applied to their donation.
8. Think Long-Term
The most successful fundraisers don’t look at Giving Tuesday as a single day to raise as much as they can. They know that the real value comes from their relationships with supporters. They look for ways to secure long-term value from Giving Tuesday donors.
One way to do it is to tie your Giving Tuesday strategy into your other fundraising campaigns.
With just 28 days between Giving Tuesday, and Dec. 31, your end-of-year appeal is a great place to start.
Or, you can use Giving Tuesday to grow your monthly giving program. When a donor gives through your online donation page, ask if they would like to make this a recurring donation.
We can’t detail these approaches under a single subhead. But you can click here to read about how nonprofits use these strategies to raise more on Giving Tuesday while building a foundation for the future.
9. Track, Analyze, Improve
We’re all familiar with the famed quote, “the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result.”
By this logic, a lot of fundraisers are insane! But you need to be diligent with your data in order to know what to change for better results.
So, no matter what you have planned for your Giving Tuesday strategy, do yourself a favor and keep track of more than how much you’re raising.
This way, you can identify areas where you fall short. This enables you to try something new next year, compare results, and tweak your strategy.
For example, look at how donors found their way to your online giving page. You might find your emails generated less traffic than your social campaigns.
This gives you a better idea of where to focus your efforts for Giving Tuesday 2020!
10. Maintain a Mission-Driven Approach
This last tip should be applied to everything we’ve already discussed in this post. No matter what cause you support, you need to stay focused on your nonprofit’s mission.
It’s OK to talk with your audience about your needs. But the amount you need to raise should never be the focus of this message!
It’s about why you are asking for that money and how it will be used to further your organization’s goals!
Without a mission-driven approach, your fundraising will suffer. Your core message needs to touch every aspect of your Giving Tuesday strategy if you want donors to care as much as you do!