Best Practices for a Successful #GivingTuesday Campaign

nonprofit strategy tips and resources

We can all agree that driving engagement and donations, and obviously raising awareness, is the mission of every organization. However, dedicating a single day to these goals can seriously enhance your nonprofit’s usual efforts.

If you haven’t already gotten started, there’s just a few weeks left until Giving Tuesday, and organizations must start planning their fundraising ideas and activities to make the most out of this annual celebration of generosity. Now entering its eighth year nonprofits, corporations and individuals alike will acknowledge #GivingTuesday on December 3.


Why Should I Get Involved?

#GivingTuesday is an opportunity for nonprofits to reach new donors, increase annual giving and be a part of an incredibly “high-profile” movement. In fact, this unique giving day has seen an estimated 470 percent increase in donations on the Tuesday after Thanksgiving since its inception, according to a recent article.

It also attracts new donors to your organization, while not cannibalizing donations from your existing supporters. A survey of more than 300 organizations that participated in #GivingTuesday in 2012 and 2013 revealed that over 63 percent experienced an increase in new donors.


Our Two Cents

Over the years, IPM Advancement’s team of experts has realized several best practices you can apply to your #GivingTuesday fundraising efforts. Here are a few to consider:

  • Equate Black Friday and Cyber Monday Savings for Greatest Impact. That’s right, #GivingTuesday advantageously follows two of the U.S.’s biggest spending days of the year: Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Why not leverage these amazing discount days and spread the word about how people can contribute the money they saved to impact your nonprofit? Be sure to equate specific dollar amounts to tangible items people can donate to a project or special program.
  • The Early Bird Catches the Worm. The key to success is strategically promoting your #GivingTuesday campaign well in advance. Depending on the size of organization, several months earlier is highly recommended. We also encourage nonprofits to pull together a specific in-house team exclusively dedicated to the effort. These team members will prepare, plan and execute the campaign from start to finish.
  • Think Peer-to-Peer. Peer-to-peer fundraising, also known as crowdfunding, is a perfect tactic for the end of the year. Because many of your donors often visit with family and friends in the months of November and December, it can be a fantastic opportunity to ask them to reach out to their personal networks to spread the word about your cause. When done right, you will not only receive additional online donations, but you also might snag some regular donors that will give to your organization moving forward.
  • Streamline Your Branding Efforts. During, before and after #GivingTuesday, always streamline your fundraising campaign’s branding. Remember, your call to action should be clear and consistent. Convey this across your website, donors’ fundraising pages, mailings, social media assets and more. It’s also crucial to carry over your special #GivingTuesday branding onto your homepage and donation forms to create a seamless, cohesive experience. Remember to use a campaign hashtag to make messages discoverable, as well as to create a stream linked to your nonprofit’s campaign.
  • Incorporate Multichannel Messaging. Smart nonprofits communicate with potential donors about #GivingTuesday not only on social media, but via emails, a branded landing page, traditional mailings, phone calls, special events, ads, or really, whatever it takes.


Last, But Definitely Not Least

The most important thing to understand about this chance to increase your donations is that #GivingTuesday has legs. Or, in laymen’s terms: it’s never too early (or late) to start planning and promoting #GivingTuesday.

In fact, rarely does a national movement come along where any nonprofit can join and receive direct benefits. With its low risk, it’s truly an amazing opportunity to boost your organization’s fundraising efforts. So, give it a try this upcoming holiday season and let us know how it works for you.


On average, new IPM clients see a 34.8% increase in direct mail fundraising acquisition response rates within the first year of working with us. Want to learn more?

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