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Much more than a hashtag for fundraising, Giving Tuesday is the world’s largest giving movement that “strives to build a world in which the catalytic power of generosity is at the heart of the society we build together, unlocking dignity, opportunity and equity around the globe.” Corporations and individuals in more than 145 nations have come together to make Giving Tuesday a vital part of fundraising for nonprofit organizations in every corner of the world.
Giving Tuesday has quickly grown into a wonderful holiday tradition. First comes Thanksgiving…then Black Friday shopping…and then Cyber Monday online deals. Giving Tuesday is the day to give back to our communities and the world by donating to cherished nonprofits.
What day comes after Giving Tuesday? For nonprofits with good stewardship, it should be Fund Accounting Wednesday!
Be prepared to use every dollar raised wisely
Giving Tuesday 2020 will provide nonprofit organizations with a critical opportunity to make up for lost revenue earlier in the year. This year’s campaign may end up generating a greater proportion of your organization’s funding that in prior years. So, it is vitally important to create a compelling campaign that inspires donations and to be ready to put every donation to its most effective use.
Multi-fund accounting and reporting presents a challenge for nonprofit organizations—especially if your finance leaders don’t have a financial management solution designed for the nonprofit industry. The right nonprofit accounting software solution can help you demonstrate excellent stewardship and real mission impact to donors.
3 tips for successful #GivingTuesday campaigns
Create a high impact #GivingTuesday campaign. Then maintain your campaign momentum throughout December to leverage additional holiday season giving. Here are three tips to help you optimize your Giving Tuesday efforts.
Tip 1: It’s all about social media and online presence
Giving Tuesday campaigns receive the vast majority of their donations online, and that will be truer than ever in 2020, due to the pandemic. Year over year, online giving has been steadily rising as donors have become more technology oriented. That’s why your #GivingTuesday campaign must be centered around social media, your website, and email. Follow these essential rules to create a great campaign:
- Come up with a compelling and shareable tagline.
- Share your vision with powerful images that grab attention.
- Connect emotionally when you bring donors into the story.
- Make it easy for donors to take action and give online.
- Expand your reach with social media and mobile friendly content.
Because most campaign sharing will occur via social media, it’s really important to get your social messaging right. DonorBox created a helpful resource, The Complete Giving Tuesday Toolkit 2020 For Nonprofits, that can walk you through preparing key messages, email campaigns, and how to harness Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn for your campaign.
Concentrate on a viral social media campaign — Giving Tuesday donors were 3 to 4 times more likely to become peer-to-peer fundraisers than year-end donors.
Tip 2: Be sensitive to donor financial hardships this year
The double hit of the COVID-19 pandemic and ensuing job losses means that many people don’t have the ability to give this year. A Nonprofit Pro whitepaper, Making the Most of #GivingTuesday in 2020, cautions organizations to show extra sensitivity in campaign messaging for donors who cannot donate (or give as much) this year. Fundraising experts, Rachel Cyrulnik, MPA and Sharon Weiss-Greenberg, PhD, advised readers to “celebrate all of those who are generous to give THIS year in particular. Whereas nonprofits usually recognize increases, new gifts and major gifts, make sure all of your #GivingTuesday donors—and donors in general—feel the love.”1
Could you line up matching funds from a major donor for your Giving Tuesday campaign? This may help cash-strapped donors feel they are able to make a big impact with a small donation, in spite of any financial hardships. Campaigns with matching gifts always raise more funds than those without.
Show good stewardship — Nearly 7 in 10 donors think organizations that send trinket gifts for donations are wasting money.2 They also prefer to be thanked by low-cost email.
Tip 3: Strengthen your mission story with data and metrics
When you map key metrics to your mission, you can present a more engaging story to your current and prospective donors. Many studies have demonstrated that donors care deeply about financial accountability and transparency. But that’s not all donors care about. They also want to know how your organization uses their donations to create a real impact. When you tell the story of your mission, you need to include both financial performance and outcome metrics that show donors exactly why and how your organization makes the world a better place.
To support your story with data, you need a financial management solution that tracks the right types of data and makes it easy for you to access the data, visualize it and present the insights. Sage Intacct helps nonprofit organizations track the data that matters most, including both financial and outcomes metrics.
Role-based dashboards give people across the organization access to key performance indicators, outcome metrics and scorecards that are relevant to their programs and responsibilities.
Strengthen your story — Seventy percent of donors research a nonprofit organization’s overall efficiency before giving. Fifty-nine percent research its philanthropic impact.3
This year has been challenging for nonprofit organizations and donors alike. You need to be ready to make the most of Giving Tuesday with an engaging fundraising campaign. It should be visual, viral, engaging, and emotional. And it should include financial and outcomes data that supports your mission story.
Having easy, real-time access to the kind of data that makes fundraising campaigns compelling is one excellent reason why Fund Accounting Wednesday should follow Giving Tuesday. The other reason is improved financial stewardship, so that you can translate a greater percentage of donations into impact.
Read the Nonprofit Storytelling eBook and learn more about how to tell the story of your organization’s mission with data.
1 Nonprofit Pro, “Making the Most of #GivingTuesday in 2020,” Rachel Cyrulnik and Sharon Weiss-Greenberg, 2020.
2 Nonprofit Tech for Good, “Global Trends in Giving Report,” 2018
3 A Guide to Philanthropy in the U.S. 8th Edition, 2019 CCS Fundraising
Nancy Master is a senior nonprofit industry marketing manager at Sage Intacct and is passionate about helping nonprofits achieve mission success. Nancy has more than 15 years of experience in software marketing and close to 20 years of experience working with a human services nonprofit organization.