You’re almost through your turkey leftovers. Black Friday has come and gone (although some of those sales last a whole week!) and you’ve just wrapped up another crazy day in the nonprofit world. In the midst of these celebrations, there are many people in need of help during this holiday season.
Giving Tuesday is an initiative created in 2012 by two nonprofit organizations to inspire their communities to give. And communities have not disappointed! Just last year, the grand total raised was over $300 million.
To the outside world, it’s an incredible event inspiring people to band together and focus on others during a consumer-driven time of year. For you however, it’s a hold-your-breath, work-till-sundown kind-of-day.
For a nonprofit leader like yourself, Giving Tuesday has the potential to be a major fundraiser for you. After pouring yourself into a successful campaign, there is now a list of donors staring at you. Some of them are new and some are already loyal to your cause. And I bet you’re thinking: now what?
Firstly, in the spirit of the holiday (whether you celebrated Thanksgiving this past week in the United States or over a month ago in Canada), we recommend not only being thankful but also showing it! Don’t forget to thank your donors — new and recurring — for being a part of your organization in a tangible way. We’ve got some great tips on crafting the perfect thank you letter here!
If someone has given to your cause, they likely want to know where their money is going. Giving Tuesday is an excellent opportunity to share specific information about your goals and mission. It’s important to think about why your work matters to you, and in turn why it matters to your donors. If you care, they’ll care!
One of the fantastic things about Giving Tuesday is that it has nationwide participation. Donors have the opportunity to be a part of something bigger than themselves and especially bigger than their own communities. They are giving at the same time as thousands of other people across the country. That is powerful.
And if they choose to be a part of that by giving to you, tell them why that matters! Social media is an excellent tool for this. If you’re not sure about social media, stay tuned. We’ve got a new blog coming your way soon on this topic!
Keep a finger on the pulse of the conversation by using the hashtag #GivingTuesday on social media. You will also find an amazing donor conversation happening through the hashtag #MyGivingStory.
What’s next after receiving gifts from all these new donors? Sifting through them to uncover the donors who have major gift potential. The best way to do this is by screening your list of Giving Tuesday donors. Not only will screening enable you to identify future gift opportunities, you’ll also get to know your new donors on a deep level.
Understanding your donors’ giving capacity, their affinity to your cause, and their propensity for philanthropic giving will prepare your organization for the perfect ask; whether that is today, tomorrow, or in a year.
Contrary to popular belief, screening of this kind doesn’t have to take a long time. That means it doesn’t have to cut into your busy holiday prep time. With the right tool, you can have a list of donors screened within minutes or hours and be on your way to finding a real gem.
Need a quick primer on screening? We have you covered.
Next up: share your screening results with your fellow fundraisers, board members, and development teams. Although it may be easy to get overwhelmed in the looming busyness of the holiday season, don’t let this opportunity pass you by.
Use the tools you have, collaborate with your team, and set yourself on course for success to wrap up the year. The work that you do is so important and each day is one more chance to be thankful for your team and resources. You can read more about making sense of your screening results here.
Finding major gift donors from a fundraising event like Giving Tuesday is like finding your pot of gold. And if you found a major gift donor from Giving Tuesday – congratulations! If you didn’t (or just haven’t yet) that’s ok too. Cultivating your donor relationships is important for turning a gift into an ongoing partnership.
Your new donors may turn out to be major gift donors for years to come, or they may turn into your most passionate volunteers. Either way, understanding your donors’ affinity, capacity, and propensity to give will help you build deep, meaningful donor relationships.
Want to know more? Click here to get in touch!
About the author: Liz Corney is iWave’s Content Marketing Manager. She has a degree in Journalism, is a fiercely positive team-player and a creative self-starter. She has experience working in software technology, video/mobile games, learning & development, social & traditional media, and communications. Liz is also the co-founder of a local nonprofit organization working to better the lives of homeless women in her community.