With all of summer before us, the holiday giving season is likely the last thing on your mind. But you don’t have to wait for #GivingTuesday to harness the power of a 24-hour day of giving!
Statistics tell us that giving days are one of the best ways to attract new donors, and their limited timeframes generate substantial energy for your organization.
Giving days are fun, they build community, and funnel enthusiasm toward one goal. They also engage online supporters around a meaningful conversation—getting you out of the rut of finding ways to fill space on your social media.
So why wait? Here are some of our favorite tips to get you started now!
Do it on a Day That Makes Sense for You
There are 364 other days in the year besides #GivingTuesday. And chances are, one of them has a special meaning for your organization and your audience. Use that day to rally your community!
Chestnut Hill College was founded and is still led by the Sisters of Saint Joseph. To launch their first giving day, they chose 3.19.19, St Joseph’s Day. We helped the college develop their theme around appreciation for the people who help you achieve your goals in life. The #GratefulGriffins campaign kicked off with email, social media and on campus activities and an ambitious and symbolic goal of $31,920.19.
Chestnut Hill’s community rallied—providing challenge gifts and donations in honor of the Sisters and others who had influenced their lives. At the close of the inaugural 24-hour campaign, Chestnut Hill College announced on Facebook, “Goals are made to be broken and guess what Griffins, we just broke ours!” Score one for Saint Joseph’s Day.
We love the power of #GivingTuesday to harness the world’s generosity. Just don’t be afraid to think outside the (calendar) box to find the perfect fit for your community!
Pick a Project
Giving days can be highly successful when you take the time to tailor your message to your audience’s priorities. Focusing on one specific, tangible project can add urgency and energy to any day of giving campaign.
While serving as the Director of Development at the Keystone Opportunity Center, our friend Jeff Miles had tremendous success with this approach. Many of the organization’s primary services revolve around homelessness, including providing transitional housing. Jeff did a fabulous job bringing the story to life and helping donors understand how frightening the ordeal can be for a child. In 2016, he focused the organization’s #GivingTuesday campaign around the goal of building a playground, a project that would restore some fun and normalcy for children who have been uprooted from their homes. Blowing past their goal, it quickly became clear that the idea deeply connected with the moms and grandmoms who are the organization’s key supporters.
Keep it Real
If you’re just getting started with your own giving day, don’t compare your efforts to another organization’s. Chances are that they’ve already been at it for years and have had time to build upon their past successes. Starting small and simple gives you the opportunity to experiment and learn about what works for you and your audience. It’s OK to begin with moderate expectations. Each year you can use and grow your knowledge to run an increasingly ambitious campaign.
This past fall, we helped Habitat for Humanity of Bucks County launch a #GivingTuesday campign. Historically, the organization’s donors have been responsive to traditional print communications. #GivingTuesday was a great chance to learn more about their donors’ online giving potential. The small-scale effort yielded lots of information about the organization’s audience. These insights—like the surprise traction Habitat’s campaign gained on Twitter—can be used for planning other fundraising activities.
Whether you want someone to consult with about your day-of-giving idea or you need help creating the components of your next campaign, we’re here for you! Give us a call at 267-468-7949 or drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.