(Photo by Peter Tobia)
This is part of "Fundraising" month of the Generocity Editorial Calendar. Find the series here.
For the past four years, the Tuesday immediately following Thanksgiving (and Black Friday, and Cyber Monday) has been known as #GivingTuesday.
That would be the day on which charitable organizations all over the world harness the power of social media to jumpstart their year-end giving campaigns.
Giving is “quintessentially human,” said Henry Timms, the founder of #GivingTuesday and executive director of 92nd Street Y in New York City, during a conversation at the National Museum of American Jewish History with Comcast’s SVP of community investment and corporate social responsibility, Dalila Wilson-Scott.
Hosting a #GivingTuesday campaign is one way for nonprofits to encourage the best in people — while, yes, increasing their fundraising power by taking advantage of the day’s momentum.
The fifth #GivingTuesday will be held on Tuesday, Nov. 29, in 75 countries. Thinking of launching a campaign to benefit your own nonprofit? Consider these tips from Timms:
Get weird with it
Use the day an opportunity to experiment with that out-of-the-box campaign idea you’ve been tossing around in your brain — like, for instance, last year’s #CouchesDon’tCount campaign by Valley Youth House. Ask, why should people care about your particular nonprofit? More eyes on giving = more reason to stand out from the crowd.
“Just try something new,” he said. “Those people who stick to the old ways [of fundraising] are going to be in big trouble pretty soon.”
Pay attention to user experience
Offer donors that instant gratification they’re so used to in the age of social media — it gives them a sense of ownership over their gift, Timms said. Show them exactly how much impact their contribution is making toward your organization’s overall goal with a simple counting graphic, or post public messages of thanks for each individual donation.
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Get out of your interns’ way
The young people on staff are the ones with the ingenuity and social media know-how to execute something really cool. Again, #GivingTuesday is about innovating — so let them try their outlandish idea.
Donors, consider your impact beyond this one day
#GivingTuesday is focused on a single day, but it should inform your relationship with giving for the whole year.
“Giving is a marriage, and #GivingTuesday is the anniversary,” Timms quipped. “It’s not like you only care about it one day a year, but it probably is the day you go out for a nice supper.”
Want more tips on executing a successful campaign? Check out the official #GivingTuesday website for a toolkit of best practices, or read our #GivingTuesday interview with social impact consultant Rudy Flesher.-30-
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