Giving Tuesday is a global giving movement that takes place the Tuesday after Thanksgiving in the United States. This day offers an unparalleled opportunity for nonprofits to bring in significant funding in a short time span.
In fact, 35 million adults in the U.S. participated in Giving Tuesday 2021, raising $2.7 billion for charity. Giving Tuesday kicks off the year-end giving season, typically leading to a last-minute donation boost that helps nonprofits finish the year strong and reach their annual fundraising goals.
Your nonprofit’s Giving Tuesday success will rely on your ability to get the word out to your supporters using your digital communications. Online outreach allows you to connect with prospective donors around the world and maximize your fundraising capabilities.
With that in mind, we’re going to cover five tips for improving your digital Giving Tuesday communications:
- Research your audience.
- Tell a compelling story.
- Use a multichannel promotion strategy.
- Make it easy for donors to give.
- Prioritize accessibility.
The most effective way to build a powerful Giving Tuesday communication strategy is to start your planning and outreach early. Getting the word out ahead of time will get your supporters thinking about how they’d like to show their support on Giving Tuesday.
1. Research your audience.
Before creating Giving Tuesday marketing materials, you should know who you’re speaking to. By understanding your audience on a deeper level, you can create an outreach strategy that resonates with them and captures their attention.
Current donors will certainly make up a good portion of your Giving Tuesday audience, but think larger than that. Lapsed donors, volunteers, social media followers, past event attendees, other community members—all of these audience members have the potential to become Giving Tuesday donors.
According to NPOInfo, the following types of supporter data will give you a sense of your audience members’ backgrounds:
- Demographics, including age, gender, marital status, and employment information
- Giving habits, including preferred gift amount, frequency, and how long they’ve been a donor
- Past involvement with your organization, including volunteer opportunities or event attendance
- Preferred communication platform, such as email, direct mail, phone calls, and so on
Use your CRM to analyze these traits and group supporters based on shared characteristics. Then, create tailored messages relevant to each group.
For example, let’s say you group supporters based on how long they’ve been involved with your organization. You can send newer supporters basic information about what Giving Tuesday donations help fund. For longer-term supporters, you can thank them for their past involvement and let them know the options available for supporting your organization on Giving Tuesday.
When supporters receive messages relevant to their situations, they’ll feel recognized and appreciated as individuals. Plus, they’ll be much more likely to engage with your Giving Tuesday messages when they’re applicable to their situations.
2. Tell a compelling story.
The holiday season inspires feelings of gratitude and philanthropy. When you create a compelling message for your Giving Tuesday digital campaign, you can spark empathy and compassion in your audience members and motivate them to give to your cause.
Make real people the focal point of your stories. You might focus on community members who have benefited from your organization’s programs or long-time volunteers. Use interviews, photos, videos, audio clips, and other multimedia elements to bring their words to life. This will make your campaign feel much more authentic.
For example, let’s say your organization focuses on supporting high school students academically and offering free SAT tutoring services. You might tell the story of one high school student named Eliza who improved her SAT score by 200 points after taking your classes, allowing her to get into her top-choice college.
Include images and direct quotes from your protagonists, enabling them to tell their stories in their own words.
3. Use a multichannel promotion strategy.
The most effective way to raise awareness about your stories is by telling them on various platforms.
Multichannel communications are especially crucial around Giving Tuesday. Many organizations will promote their Giving Tuesday opportunities, so the more platforms you can advertise your fundraising efforts, the more likely you’ll connect with a wider audience.
Focus your digital communications on platforms like:
- Social media. The Giving Tuesday movement originated on social media with a simple hashtag—#GivingTuesday. That means platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter are natural places to share your Giving Tuesday appeals. Keep in mind the unique audience present on each platform. For example, younger audiences prefer channels like TikTok and Instagram, while older audiences tend to be more present on Facebook. Focus the bulk of your strategy on one or two platforms your audience members use most.
- Your website. The best nonprofit websites serve as informational hubs for all fundraising activities. As Giving Tuesday approaches, update your website to focus on promoting your stories and giving options for this charitable event. Update your home page header image to feature your Giving Tuesday story, and incorporate call-to-action (CTA) buttons that send website visitors to your giving page. Also, if you have a website blog, create a few posts that cover your Giving Tuesday fundraising goals and feature a few emotional stories.
- Email. Craft a Giving Tuesday email series that kicks off a few weeks before the big day. You can feature a different beneficiary story in each email and tell potential donors exactly what their gifts will help fund. On Giving Tuesday, you can send an email during the day to update subscribers about progress made toward your goal and ask for their support to cross the finish line.
Use a cross-promotional strategy to enhance your outreach on each digital platform. For example, share your blog posts from your website on social media or include embedded social media posts in your email newsletters. Encouraging supporters to engage with all of your digital platforms can amplify your message and increase the chances that your online audience will support you on Giving Tuesday.
4. Make it easy for donors to give.
Make it as easy as possible for both new and existing supporters to get involved in your Giving Tuesday campaign. The key to a smooth online donation process is a streamlined, user-friendly digital giving page. After all, this page is where you’ll drive supporters to donate across all your campaign outreach.
Use the following design tips to create a Giving Tuesday-friendly donation form:
- Make it easy to find the form by incorporating multiple CTA buttons throughout your website, social media, and email outreach.
- Ensure the page is mobile-friendly by compressing images and using an uncomplicated design.
- Include a compelling description on your donation page that shows supporters why their gifts matter.
In addition to offering an easy-to-use online donation page, you should also make it simple for supporters to maximize their gifts. For example, include a matching gift database on your donation page that allows donors to research whether their employers offer matching gifts. Also, include a button for donors to transform their one-time gift into a monthly contribution.
These adjustments ensure that each donor who wants to take their support to the next level has clear instructions for doing so.
5. Prioritize accessibility.
Your Giving Tuesday communications should be accessible to all audiences. That means they’re legible and understandable by anyone, even those with physical or mental disabilities.
Accessibility isn’t just important for your Giving Tuesday outreach—you should prioritize it in all of your nonprofit’s web design. Keep the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines in mind when updating your site—these regulations are universally agreed-upon principles for accessible web design.
To create accessible digital content, keep the following tips in mind while building your communication strategy:
- Clearly label form fields on your donation page and other forms with descriptive text.
- Offer mobile-friendly donation options and a responsive design that automatically resizes content to fit different screen sizes.
- Make sure your graphic designs feature sufficient color contrast and large, readable fonts.
- Simplify your language in written content and avoid jargon.
Pay special attention to your nonprofit’s branding when designing your communications to be more accessible. For instance, make sure your official font choices are simple and easily readable, your graphic designs have sufficient color contrast, and your brand voice is clear and comprehensible.
Accessible content makes your Giving Tuesday marketing strategy usable for a wider audience, expanding your pool of potential donors.
Looking for more tips for your Giving Tuesday marketing strategy? Check out Kanopi’s guide to Giving Tuesday digital communications. This resource reviews best practices for crafting your Giving Tuesday messaging and adapting your website to tell your Giving Tuesday story effectively.
With these tips and resources, your organization should be able to craft a Giving Tuesday communication strategy that empowers you to exceed your fundraising goals.