Giving Tuesday 2022: Everything Nonprofits Need to Know

Samantha Lego • Aug 26, 2022
Giving Tuesday Logo on a blank background

The sun is lower in the sky. The leaves are just about to burst into flaming color. Pumpkin spice is being stockpiled for the upcoming insatiable demand. It’s almost autumn, and as the thoughts of many turn to jack-o-lanterns, turkey dinners, and cable-knit sweaters, nonprofit organizations are preoccupied with planning for a different special day: Giving Tuesday.

The biggest day in nonprofit fundraising is just around the corner, and the time to prepare your campaign is now. Fortunately, we’ve got you covered with this primer on Giving Tuesday 2022, including some great fundraising ideas. Let’s get into it!

Here is everything you need to know about Giving Tuesday – in one spot!

What is Giving Tuesday?

Giving Tuesday was created by some dedicated and visionary folks at the 92nd Street Y in New York City in 2012. This national day of giving was intended to be a reaction against the consumerism and self-interest of Black Friday and Cyber Monday. 

It was initially conceived as a causeless day of giving—that is, the campaign was targeted at encouraging donations to any nonprofit, not to a specific mission. The organizers recognized that many people already feel a strong distaste for the holiday shopping season. Giving Tuesday provides a wholesome and helpful outlet to them while changing the focus of many others to giving instead of spending.

Since its founding in the United States, Giving Tuesday has expanded worldwide largely due to easy sharing on social media platforms using #GivingTuesday.

Giving Tuesday in 2021 raised a record $2.7 billion in the United States alone, with much more donated around the world. This international giving day now includes calls to action beyond giving, including donation matching and volunteering

See more statistics from Giving Tuesday 2021:

an illustration of the key statistics and results from GivingTuesday 2021

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When is Giving Tuesday?

Giving Tuesday is always the first Tuesday following Black Friday, which marks the beginning of the holiday shopping season. It always falls between November 27 and December 3. This year,

Giving Tuesday will take place on November 29, 2022.

Why Nonprofits Participate in Giving Tuesday

Though there are plenty of emotional and cultural reasons to get involved with this international day of giving, there are three big strategic reasons that nonprofit organizations work hard to promote Giving Tuesday.

1. Strategic Timing

Nearly a third of all giving occurs in December, including about 10% on the last three days of the year, propelled by the double whammy of holiday spirit and tax benefits from charitable giving. Giving Tuesday happens at a time of year when people are already thinking about donating to nonprofit organizations, so it tends to be easy to encourage folks to give.

2. Capitalize on Momentum

Since so many nonprofit organizations are already talking about Giving Tuesday, everywhere people look—on social media, on television, and even discussed amongst friends and family—there is a good chance that they will see multiple #GivingTuesday messages in a short period. This groundswell of momentum helps to push potential donors to get out their credit cards and give.

3. Raise Awareness

Giving Tuesday isn’t just an opportunity to do short-term fundraising. Since people are primed to listen to nonprofit messaging at the end of the year, this campaign is a chance to raise awareness about your cause and expand your audience, making future campaigns more successful.

Spread the Word About Your Giving Tuesday Campaign

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How Does a Giving Tuesday Campaign Work?

Your Giving Tuesday strategy should revolve around a one-day fundraising event taking place on November 29, 2022. While the Giving Tuesday organization provides a lot of momentum and high-profile new coverage, planning a campaign is up to you. 

The organization will not collect donations for you, and they won’t promote your campaign—remember, it’s a movement, not a fundraising organization. However, they do supply some helpful resources that you can use to help your event achieve success. 

You may want to run a general fundraising campaign, or you can focus on something more specific, like a special program or initiative. And because donations are a part of the public record, the Giving Tuesday organization can add up all the donations made on this special day and publish a total that reflects the amount of good all the campaigns have done in aggregate.

This campaign will likely attract more attention to your organization than any other campaign you mount all year, so it’s also a great time to evaluate your fundraising process. With more people entering your pipeline, you should be able to convert more prospects to donors during this period. So, it’s an excellent opportunity to test new strategies.

How to Run a Giving Tuesday Campaign

Now that you understand where Giving Tuesday came from, why it’s a big deal for nonprofit organizations, and how it works, it’s time to get into the details of how to run your campaign, which we’ve presented here in just six easy Giving Tuesday tips.

1. Set Goals

Setting goals for any campaign is an essential practice. Goals allow you to aim your resources at the most effective targets, track how you’re doing during your fundraising, and see how well you did afterward. With well-conceived goals, you can even measure your performance year over year.

Start with simple, high-level questions as the foundation of your goal-setting process. How much money do we want to raise? How many new people do we want to reach? What metrics will we track? 

It’s important to remember to set goals that work for your organization; if your goals are too hard, you’ll have a tough time achieving them and risk damaging your team’s morale; too easy, and you’ll be leaving funds and followers on the table.

2. Develop a Campaign Strategy

Once you’ve decided what you want to get out of your campaign, you can start working on how you’re going to achieve it. A multi-channel approach for Giving Tuesday is ideal since you only have one day to reach as many people as possible, and not everyone will be on Instagram that day. Plan to use email, social media, direct mail, and even phone calls to reach more supporters.

When constructing your campaign strategy, remember that Giving Tuesday isn’t only about fundraising; it’s also about awareness. So be sure to include your organization’s brand front and center in all of your communications.

3. Create a Donor Stewardship Plan

Giving Tuesday has the potential to add a lot of new names to your contact database, so you better be ready for them. You need to have a donor management strategy in place long before the campaign gets rolling. 

This should include a reliable donor stewardship plan so that you can nurture your new donors and hopefully transform them into lifelong donors.

donor stewardship

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4. Recruit Stakeholders

Giving Tuesday is an all-hands-on-deck fundraising event, which means you and your team don’t have to go it alone. Be sure to brief board members on your plans, get input from them, and capitalize on any special opportunities or resources they may have to offer.

Giving Tuesday is also a great time to call on partnerships with corporations that you’ve worked with in the past. This could be as simple as asking them to amplify your message on social media if they have a large audience, or something even more impactful, like setting up a donation matching program that involves corporate employees.

5. Leverage Your Donor Base

One of the reasons Giving Tuesday has been so successful is that the hashtag #GivingTuesday makes the day easily shareable on social media. And that shareability is something you can focus on for your campaign. 

Reach out to existing supporters and ask them to share your message with their networks—it’s a great way to reach people who may not otherwise see information about your mission.

Another great tactic is a peer-to-peer fundraising campaign, where your supporters fundraise from their networks on your behalf. Peer-to-Peer campaigns are useful because they help spread your message beyond your usual reach while capturing donations from outside your usual circle of supporters.

6. Make a Post Giving Tuesday Fundraising Plan

While Giving Tuesday may feel like the end of the year, it’s actually the beginning of the giving season. As noted above, 30% of donations happen in December. So, it’s prudent to be prepared to ride the momentum from Giving Tuesday over the following few weeks. 

End-of-year donations are often the easiest to acquire, as long as you’re ready, so don’t forget to put a plan in place well before the campaign starts so that you can nurture your new donors throughout the holiday season.

8 Fundraising Ideas for Your Giving Tuesday 2022 Campaign

While you are undoubtedly a creative and organized individual, you may still need a little push in the right direction to get your campaign off to a great start. Here are some Giving Tuesday campaign ideas that you can use or build off of for the big day this year.

1. Facebook Fundraiser

With billions of users and a suite of helpful nonprofit donation tools, Facebook is probably the best network to raise funds online. Chances are you already have an account for your organization, so all you need to do is come up with some messaging and take advantage of Facebook’s campaign resources on Giving Tuesday.

2. Peer-to-Peer Fundraising

We mentioned this already, but it bears repeating: peer-to-peer fundraising is ideal for Giving Tuesday since it spreads awareness and raises money from people who might not have otherwise heard about your mission.

3. Use the #Unselfie Hashtag

People love sharing things about themselves on social media. For Giving Tuesday this year, instead of seeing your supporters sharing their latest jogging time or what they ate for breakfast, encourage them to post an #unselfie. It’s a great way to create dialogue around donating to nonprofit organizations and unites potential supporters under a common movement.

4. Virtual Fundraiser

This year has been…unpredictable at best. There’s a solid chance that we’ll still be under some kind of restrictions during Giving Tuesday this year—which could make in-person fundraisers complicated or impossible. If you’re worried about putting large groups of people in one room, or if your supporters are spread across the globe, a virtual fundraiser may be the answer. There are lots of ways to do it, and none of them require putting pants on. Bonus!

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5. Fundraising Thermometer

Using a fundraising thermometer can increase donations by up to 35%, a considerable effect from something that costs nothing to set up on your website. Consider using a fundraising thermometer no matter what your campaign looks like to keep your supporters motivated to reach the top.

6. Celebrity Endorsement

If you know a celebrity willing to support your cause by spreading your message, Giving Tuesday is a great time to call in that favor. If you don’t know any famous folks, you can invest a small amount for a message from the wide selection of glitterati on Cameo, then use it in your campaign materials.

7. Coffee Date

Giving Tuesday allows you to reach many more people than you usually would. And while some of those people might donate large amounts, many will donate nothing at all. 

But you may find that asking for small donations, like the amount a potential supporter might spend on a cup of coffee, is an effective way to raise funds from that enlarged audience while allowing you to capture their contact information for use in future donor communications. Five bucks is better than nothing, and it gives you a chance to build a genuine relationship with donors in the future.

8. Donation Matching

On Giving Tuesday, people are already primed with a charitable spirit. Offering them the chance to double their donation is likely to garner a positive and enthusiastic response. Find a corporate sponsor or large private donor and craft your communications around donation matching, being sure to emphasize that gifts will do twice as much good as they usually would.

Click here to Get Access to More Giving Tuesday Resources

Good luck!

Are You Ready for Giving Tuesday 2022?

This complete campaign toolkit will help you set up donation pages, events, social media, and email campaigns and includes handy timelines and templates to keep you on track.