Let’s Do #GivingTuesday Campaigns Differently: Build Long-lasting Relationships With Donors

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On #GivingTuesday in 2016, 20,000 nonprofits and other organizations hoping to make a positive impact raised a record-breaking $168 million dollars. This was a dramatic 43 percent increase from the $117 million raised on #GivingTuesday in 2015. As long as organizations continue to put their best foot forward through strategic marketing campaigns, corporate partnerships, sponsored events and more, 2017 is likely to be the biggest #GivingTuesday yet.

However, even as #GivingTuesday campaigns continue to set fundraising records, most organizations are far from recognizing the full potential that #GivingTuesday holds. Too many organizations focus on quick wins and one-time donations in their #GivingTuesday campaigns and completely miss out on the opportunity to foster sustainable donor relationships destined for longevity and success.

This year, organizations should approach their #GivingTuesday campaigns differently. Here’s how your organization can leverage the momentum of #GivingTuesday to create long-lasting relationships with your donors.

Offer an Incentive for Recurring Donations

Research by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and Global Giving, the largest global crowdfunding community, shows that, when offered an incentive, donors are more likely to sign up for monthly donations.

This year, compel your #GivingTuesday donors to sign up for recurring donations with the promise of an even greater impact. One way to do this is to leverage the power of corporate partnerships. For example, let donors know if they sign up for a monthly donation on #GivingTuesday, those donations will be matched by a corporate partner, amplifying their donation and doing even more good. Or, you can provide exclusive access to special events to your monthly donors.  

Promote Ongoing Initiatives

Use #GivingTuesday as an opportunity to let donors know how they can actively engage with your organization throughout the year to make a sustained impact.

For example, eBay for Charity is a year-long initiative that connects eBay users with their favorite charities. Participants can sell or buy items in support of their charity of choice, or start their own fundraising campaign. On #GivingTuesday in 2016, eBay promoted their Charity Shop, offering exclusive items and experiences from celebrities and athletes in spirit of the holiday. By marketing their ongoing program on high-profile #GivingTuesday, eBay reaches even more shoppers who may be interested in joining the eBay for Charity community.

If your organization engages with your audience through email marketing, add #GivingTuesday campaign participants to a special email marketing list to communicate with throughout the year. If they’ve participated once, they may be likely to engage with the program again, not just on one charitable holiday.

Target Your Most Relevant Audiences

Take advantage of social media advertising targeting and marketing email list segmentation to pinpoint potential donors who have a more intimate connection your cause. Donors who match the profile of your prospective donors are more likely to give not just on #GivingTuesday, but throughout the year.

This year on #GivingTuesday, Colorado State University will be promoting the Rams Against Hunger Program. Through this program, students and alumni are asked to make a donation that goes toward providing meal cards for students struggling with food security at the university. A personal connection to the campus and its students not only compels donors to make their initial donation, but to continue to follow the successes of the program and perhaps donate again in the future.

Keep in Touch With Donors After #GivingTuesday

Continue to let your #GivingTuesday donors know about the impact their dollars have made throughout the year. Regular email newsletters and social media messaging featuring inspiring stories, photos and videos of those who have benefitted from your programs and services will help foster better donor relationships. Highlight major accomplishments like a newly built freshwater well, a new job training program or a large shipment of shoes being donated to homeless individuals or others in need.

Thank your donors for their contributions and remind them they’re the reason why your organization can continue to make a positive impact.

Are you ready to do #GivingTuesday differently this year?

Fruitful donor relationships aren’t built in a day. It takes more than a flippant, seasonal “donate-now” call to action to truly engage your donors. This upcoming #GivingTuesday, think about how you can enhance the donor experience instead of focusing on quick, cash-grab donations. This will help turn your donors into a more sustainable source of support.

To more effectively engage your #GivingTuesday donors, it’s important to understand their needs, wants and motivations.

education stakeholdersDownload our free Stakeholder Profile Worksheets today to begin creating a #GivingTuesday marketing campaign that provides value to your donors and mobilizes them to support your cause all year round.



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