So you’ve decided to start a nonprofit. You’ve got your paperwork in order, your executive team is in place and your mission is clear. You incorporate your organization and file for tax exemption. You check your mail everyday anxiously awaiting one letter and suddenly, the IRS sends you a letter stating that you’re officially recognized as a 501(c)(3) organization! Hooray! You do the happy dance and bask in the air of gratitude and happiness. But then the dust starts to settle and it’s now time to begin executing your mission. You’re now faced with the simple question, “Now what?”
Our team came across the same dilemma. See we were clear on who we wanted to help and how we wanted to help but we still needed to figure out the logistics in what would make it possible to help. Money makes the world go round even, when it is for a good cause. So here we were, with a clearly defined mission, purpose, great website and branding but no clear plan of how to raise the necessary funding to support our mission?
Enter #GivingTuesday. While browsing Twitter looking for some new friends (you can be our new friend too!), we came across something that is borderline epic: a national day of giving. A NATIONAL DAY of GIVING!
I mean, talk about PERFECT.
Not impressed yet? On Tuesday, December 1, 2014, Giving Tuesday catalyzed $45.68 million in donations, with an average gift size of $154! I bet we have your attention now.
We were fascinated by last year’s numbers. How could we have missed this HUGE and monumental day?! Nonetheless, we began devising a plan to maximize what little time we had left to participate. We continued our research and tested a few tactics that have gained us 20 followers and 2 donations in a matter of 3 days!
If you’re a new nonprofit like us (or an established one) here are six tips that will help make your #GivingTuesday campaign successful:
- Passion is required for this mission. Select a team member who is dedicated to spearheading all #GivingTuesday plans. This person will coordinate deadlines and naturally be very active online throughout the campaign. Why you ask? Because he/she is passionate about the cause. DUH!
2. Create custom #GivingTuesday media for your website. Whether you create a new tab, show your hashtag feed, or highlight your custom donations page, make it very clear that you are participating in #GivingTuesday by branding your website for the campaign.
3. Make your donations page user-friendly and headache-free. Have you ever wanted to order something online, but the buying process was so long that you changed your mind? Don’t scare your donors away by sending them through hoops! Create a donations page that doesn’t require users to leave your website. Philantro offers an awesome service, which includes on-site donations and donor analytics.
4. Participate in #GivingTuesday webinars and twitter chats. There’s no better way to meet potential donors than to network! Get chatty on social media! GivingTuesday.org has a ton of opportunities to connect. Put your best foot forward!
6. Make it fun! You must make the act of giving enticing. For example, 100 Ways of Giving recently held a #give100thanks contest, which encouraged our followers to share Thanksgiving photos with reasons why they were thankful for a chance to win a gift bag from our sponsors. We will also be offering free gifts for donors throughout the day on December 1st.
Lastly, it’s important that YOU have fun! Raising money can be a stressful task, but #GivingTuesday can be successful due to more than monetary donations. Take Dec 1st as an opportunity to make your organization and it’s unique mission stand out. While you’re here, take a look at our #GivingTuesday page and Tweet us your results!