Giving days (not to be confused with #GivingTuesday) are 24-hour online fundraising events, either hosted by a single nonprofit or a community foundation on behalf of many nonprofits.
Whether your nonprofit is putting on its own giving day or participating in a community event, it’s an excellent way to draw in new donors—some nonprofits have reported that as many as 60% of their giving day donors are brand new.
The early nonprofit gets the donor dollars.
Start planning for your giving day six to nine months in advance. If you’re participating in a community giving day, your community foundation is likely providing you with some training or free resources—take advantage of those to get a head start on best practices.
Know what you’re working with.
Understanding your donation technology inside and out is the key to minimizing glitches and downtime during your event. Maybe your community foundation is using a giving day software platform for its event (which we have a bit of experience with) or maybe you’re running your event from a page on your website using your regular payment solution. Either way, being aware of processing fees and knowing what kind of information donors will be filling out is important so you can set accurate goals, answer any donor questions and build your database.
Game, set, match funds.
Matching donation funds is a great way to incentivize donors—it’s basically BOGO, only with charitable giving. If your giving day is a solo event, ask board members, past donors and local businesses to contribute to your matching fund. If you’re participating in a community giving day, your community foundation may already have a match fund that will be distributed proportionately among its nonprofits.
First, get your staff and internal team on board. Let them know what’s happening and give them the tools to promote your event easily (and on-brand). Giving days are all about peer-to-peer fundraising, so make it a snap for your supporters and past donors to share your message and invite their friends to participate too.
Mind your manners.
Following up after your event is key to retaining donors! Be sure to thank donors immediately after their donation and again after the event, updating them on the total amount your nonprofit raised.