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Top Donor Engagement Strategies for GivingTuesday

Top Donor Engagement Strategies for GivingTuesday

As a nonprofit professional, you’re likely already refining your fundraising strategies as the year-end fundraising season—and its jumping-off point, GivingTuesday—quickly approaches. After all, GivingTuesday is one of the most important days of the year for nonprofit fundraisers.


However, engaging donors effectively on this day can be difficult due to a wide range of nonprofit causes also vying for your supporters’ attention.


So, what can you do to ensure your campaign stands out to your audience, grabs donors’ attention, and maintains high levels of engagement throughout? Consider the following strategies to get (and keep) your donors on board with your campaign:

  1. Share nonprofit fundraising impact.
  2. Leverage eye-catching imagery.
  3. Prioritize matching gifts.
  4. Personalize your messaging.
  5. Incorporate strategic stewardship afterward.

Having the right tips and tools for GivingTuesday is a must. Ready to find out more about these tried-and-true engagement practices that will set you up for success on the worldwide day of giving and afterward? Let’s jump in.

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Share nonprofit fundraising impact.


Donors like to give to organizations that they can see are making a difference. They might be solicited by multiple nonprofits on GivingTuesday that are all fundraising for the same or similar causes. Elevate your efforts by effectively communicating the impact you have on your intended audience.


For example, you may want to share these types of resources with donors and prospects:

  • Annual reports: One of the most popular ways to communicate the impact that your nonprofit has had on your mission is through annual reports⁠—with information on major achievements, overall finances, and more. GivingTuesday is the perfect opportunity to do so as the year wraps up!

  • Constituent stories: Collect compelling and truthful stories about how your nonprofit has impacted its constituents to share with those whose generous dollars made it happen. This allows supporters to put names and faces to your cause which increases their likelihood for support.

  • Facts and figures: Did your organization find homes for 1,476 puppies this year? Did you raise more than $10 million for families living in poverty? Share these impressive numbers with donors within your GivingTuesday appeals!

You know your donors care about your cause. Providing them with this information can help tug on their heartstrings to support your campaign. Just make sure that in all of your impact stories, you position the donor as the hero of the narrative—because they are!


Leverage eye-catching imagery.


If you want your nonprofit’s content to stand out on social media or other on- or off-line marketing efforts on GivingTuesday, incorporating attention-grabbing, relevant, and visually appealing imagery is critical. Here are a few best practices to ensure your images create the most impact possible:

  • Use real photos of your organization in action.
  • Incorporate images of mission beneficiaries (with permission).
  • Visualize statistics with attention-grabbing graphics.
  • Drive emotion but focus on the positives.

You’ve surely heard the saying, “a picture is worth a thousand words.” This is especially true on GivingTuesday when donors are being overwhelmed with information and appeals from a ton of different causes.


Prioritize matching gifts.


According to matching gift research, an average of $4-7 billion in available corporate matching gift revenue is left unclaimed each year. A lot of that is simply due to a lack of awareness about these opportunities.


By prioritizing matching gifts, both on GivingTuesday and afterward, you can inform your supporters about how to get involved and what they can do to make their dollars go even further for your cause. Here’s what we suggest:

  • Highlighting matching gift programs on social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and even TikTok leading up to GivingTuesday
  • Reminding donors about matching gift opportunities directly within your online GivingTuesday donation page
  • Providing donors with access to an easily searchable matching gift company database to determine their match eligibility
  • Personally, following up with match-eligible (or likely eligible) donors to share their employer’s giving program guidelines and how to get involved

As you do so, be sure to collect valuable matching gift data to better understand the impact and effectiveness of these programs. If you notice that a significant portion of your match-eligible donations are still not securing the company gift, consider revamping your efforts and appealing to your audience in a different way. Matching gifts are critical on GivingTuesday, but you certainly don’t want to stop your efforts there!


Personalize your messaging.


More than likely, you already know that personalization is the key to successful fundraising efforts. An appeal addressed to a particular recipient is more likely to secure a gift than one written to a generic audience. But personalization can go a lot further than message greetings!


This might mean acknowledging a donor’s most recent gift to your organization (whether it was a few months or a few years ago) or sending targeted messaging based on the types of efforts the recipient tends to support (i.e., sending your animal shelter’s kitten-specific fundraising appeal to a known cat-lover). 


When you’re looking to emphasize workplace giving opportunities, for example, this can mean providing donors with information about their employer! If you’re sending a matching gift appeal, and you know the donor works for a particularly generous matching gift company, be sure to incorporate employer-specific information in your messaging. That may include donation minimums and maximums matched, qualifying types of employees and nonprofits, match request deadlines, and even detailed instructions for submission.


The more each of your communications are tailored to the recipient, the more humanized the connection will feel. Not only will that lead to increased donations on the day of GivingTuesday, but it also sets the stage for continued support into the future.


Incorporate strategic stewardship afterward.


The donor journey shouldn’t end once an individual makes their initial gift. Instead, it’s simply time to transition into an effective stewardship plan.


Your donors should feel like they joined a team as a key player aiming for a common goal—which they’ll continue to work toward with long-term support of your cause. Take a look at a few key stewardship ideas to help engage and retain your GivingTuesday donors over time:

  • Enlist dedicated volunteers or other team members to send handwritten thank-you notes or make personal thank-you phone calls.
  • Host exclusive donor stewardship events like luncheons or galas.
  • Leverage public donor acknowledgments through your website, social media pages, or traditional recognition displays.

Unfortunately, GivingTuesday has a reputation for collecting one-time donations from individuals who never give again. But that doesn’t have to be the case! These efforts and more work to show each donor that they mean more to your organization than a data point in your CRM, or worse, their wallet. In doing so, you can continue to strengthen your donor relationships and set your organization up for ongoing and recurring support.


Keeping donors engaged on GivingTuesday is important. Maintaining high levels of engagement long into the new year and beyond is even more essential. Luckily, these tips can help set your team up for continued success, maximize giving revenue, and improve donor relationships overall.


Be sure to effectively communicate your organization's impact on its mission, make the most of attention-grabbing images, incorporate matching gift strategies, personalize your donor outreach as much as possible, and take a strategic approach to donor stewardship going forward. Good luck!


If you are looking to learn more about GivingTuesday, related campaigns, or if you need a consultation, click here for a free GivingTuesday fundraising consultation and demo.


Additional GivingTuesday Resources