The numbers are staggering. 114 billion impressions on Twitter. 917,313 users reached on Facebook. More than $116 million raised.
So, is #GivingTuesday an automatic win? A miraculous boon to every need? Unfortunately, there's no guarantee, as those of you who woke up to a lukewarm Wednesday already know.
M&C is following 30 randomly selected local charities and we've already posted a brief overview of the #GivingTuesday activity in Kansas City. One campaign – HappyBottoms – was particularly impressive and we wanted to provide a closer look to help you plan your efforts next year.
Here are six tips to hep you make #GivingTuesday2016 a little more successful.
1. Start Early
"Last year #GivingTuesday was on us before we could think out a full campaign," said Executive Director John Teasdale.
So, late this past summer, a team of enterprising volunteers/employees – Leanne Mersmann, Celeste Yarlagadda and Jeana van Sickle – started brainstorming the 2015 effort.
As a result of their planning and preparation, HappyBottoms was able to begin promoting #GivingTuesday a full week early. (Of the organizations we're following, nearly half waited until the day of #GivingTuesday to remind to their supporters.)
2. Build Momentum
#GivingTuesday 2014 generated $500 for HappyBottoms. The team set an initial goal of twice that for 2015 and then approached a donor who agreed to match up to that amount.
That initial goal was bumped up twice on #GivingTuesday, the first time by mid-morning! The thermometer post was a nice way to quickly convey the momentum and to reinforce the match. Note too, the link to the donation form (make it easy!) and the tag to Nonprofit Connect (help spread the word).
3. Have Fun
The team also took advantage of the #UNselfie ("take a pic, tag it and upload") template provided on the #GivingTuesday website. Of course they reposted those effort and thanked supporters, encouraging further participation.
4. Recognize Donors
Throughout the day, HappyBottoms publicly acknowledged the gifts of those donors who agreed to the recognition. According to Teasdale, between 60% and 70% of those contributors were new (first time) donors.
HappyBottoms posted to its Facebook page more than 20 times on Tuesday and sent out more than 20 tweets as well. Interaction does take coordinated effort. These responsibilities were split between a team of volunteers, staff and board members.
5. Report Back
On Wednesday, December 2, HappyBottoms let supporters know the cumulative results of their efforts and again thanked them for their support.
6. Keep Perspective
#GivingTuesday doesn't happen in isolation; it's a part of your ongoing relationship with your supporters. To be effective, the conversation needs to start well before #GivingTuesday (one organization tweeted five reminders after more than a month of Twitter silence – a less-than-effective approach) and also needs to platform for continued interaction.