7 Ways To Maximize Your #GivingTuesday Fundraising Success

Yesterday was Labor Day so now it’s official. It’s football season. According to older fashion norms, we shouldn’t wear white. And, now there’s not a moment to lose on our End-of-Year Fundraising Campaigns.

Many of us will participate in #GivingTuesday. According to Tom Watson in a Chronicle of Philanthropy report on September 1, the Case Foundation reported that giving through the 2014 #GivingTuesday campaign was up 65% over 2013 which saw a four-fold increase over 2012. Giving Tuesday has been growing steadily and every year more and more organizations have decided to participate, so much so that Watson, President of CauseWired, an admitted “sometimes skeptic” where #GivingTuesday is concerned, has come to believe that #GivingTuesday is becoming a cultural phenomenon.

With so many organizations participating, the good news is that your supporters will likely be expecting you to participate and will be watching and waiting for your #GivingTuesday messages and requests for support. The bad news is that with so many organizations participating, it will be difficult to have your organization’s message heard in a crowded nonprofit market place.

Here are 7 things you can do to ensure your organization accomplishes maximum success on #GivingTuesday.

  1. Recruit Strong Teams before the Campaign Begins. Before the first day of the campaign, identify some volunteer fundraising teams that you can count on to be ready to roll out right away, early in the day. These should be people who know how to crowdfund, who have done this for your organization before (perhaps with a walk, bike-a-thon, or run). These leaders should have friends or family members they will be able to recruit (again, before GivingTuesday) to be on their teams to help them fundraise. You’ll want these leaders to come out of the gates strong. Positive momentum, especially if there is going to be a community leader board (perhaps on a local tv or radio station) will boost the morale of your supporters.
  2. Secure prizes and incentives. You’ll use these to encourage people to give and to register throughout the day. Think like public radio! Many of public radio’s successful campaigns have hourly goals. In order to meet the hourly goals, sometimes an incentive prize is offered and everyone who calls during a particular hour and gives more than a specific amount is entered into a drawing to win a specific prize. Break your overall goal for the day down into hourly goals and use incentive prizes and contests to motivate giving to reach your mini-goals.
  3. Hijack your organization’s homepage for the day.  Plan for pop-up messages, headline bars, or slider images featuring your #GivingTuesday messages and directing people immediately to your giving page. Coordinate the messaging for #GivingTuesday with your communications and marketing team.
  4. Prepare your email and social media multi-channel campaign in advance. Have all messages, blog posts, and social media posts prepared and pre-scheduled to post before the day of so that you don’t have to worry about remembering to pull the trigger on enewsletters or Tweets. You’ll want this campaign to be multi-channel and for the messages, images, and themes to be consistent across channels.
  5. Involve your volunteers in 3rd-party fundraising. Ask them to spread the message on social media or pass out cards at work directing people to your GivingTuesday donation site. Consider wrap-around events and activities (blue jean/casual for a cause days and other activities that your supporters might do during a walk-a-thon or 5K). Just like in a walk event, your volunteer fundraisers can raise money offline and turn it in online.
  6. Prepare your website. 65% of those who will consider making a gift to your organization will visit your website first to decide whether or not they will give.  See my earlier post on getting your website ready for company coming and how to optimize your site to maximize opportunities to convert visitors to donors. 
  7. Equip your board.  Make sure they have the tools and information your board members need to be able to participate in #GivingTuesday.  See my earlier post on 5 Ways You Can Get Your Board Members to Fundraise on Giving Tuesday

Above all else, remember to share the passion for your cause. Make sure that everyone who visits your website, reads your blogs and newsletters, see your Tweets or Facebook posts, knows why you care, why your organization makes a difference in the world and how they have played a role in making this difference possible.  Tell your donors what you—with their support—have been able to accomplish. Thank them for what they’ve made possible and invite them to continue to be a part of the future.


Our newsletter contains not only great articles like this one, but also more tips and strategies for strengthening your board and nonprofit, raising more funds, and growing your organization’s impact. We respect your privacy and do not rent or sell our list and you’re welcome to unsubscribe at any time if you find it’s not helpful to you.