#GivingTuesday: How to Entice Corporate Donors

Many nonprofits focus their #GivingTuesday plans on individual donors. While this approach is often fairly easy to implement, you can get more bang for your buck if you also target the corporate donor. The key with corporate donors is that they often want something in return (Horrors!). Understanding what will motivate them – especially small local companies – can make your #GivingTuesday plan a winner for everyone.

Online Kudos = Free Publicity

As you begin to plan your #GivingTuesday strategy, consider approaching the corporate donor by presenting it as a corporate sponsorship opportunity. Create a dedicated web page for this year’s #GivingTuesday efforts and include the logos of corporate donors who have committed to giving to your cause. Start with the low-hanging fruit: last year’s corporate donors. Let them know that you will give them free online exposure on your website and through social media if they agree to donate again. Then, compile a list of other community businesses and send them a letter or an email letting them know about your sponsorship offer. Hot tip! Companies love to see their logos at work. Encourage larger donations by listing only the names of businesses that give under a certain amount. For companies giving over a certain threshold, add their logos to your site and posts.

Dedicated Exposure

One way to put the spotlight on corporate sponsors is to give them a block of time during #GivingTuesday that is all about them. Agree to a matching donation program where all donations within a certain time will be matched by that company (don’t forget about corporate matching gift programs!) Then, notify your social network followers and, if possible, quickly update your website to move the company’s logo to the top of the page during that time slot. Hot tip! Suggest that the company encourage community interaction by giving away prizes that must be picked up at their business.

Media Buzzzzzzz

Garnering media attention, both before and after #GivingTuesday, is one of the things that companies want most. Issue press releases before the event including the names of the corporate donors who have committed to giving. After the big day, focus news stories on actual data, such as total donated or the specific projects your nonprofit will now be able to implement. Hot tip! Emphasize the names of the corporate sponsors as one of the reasons that these projects are possible.

Don’t Forget Small Businesses

While it’s tempting to go after big donors, don’t forget about smaller companies. They often forego traditional sponsorships because of the cost. However, #GivingTuesday is the perfect opportunity to engage these small businesses at giving levels they can afford. It gives them a big advertising return which is something they crave.

#GivingTuesday can be a boom or bust project for any nonprofit. The key is to plan your strategy, put yourself out there to make it happen, then learn from the experience to improve your results for next year. Good luck!

Gretchen Barry is director of marketing and communications for NonProfitEasy. You can reach her at [email protected].

#GivingTuesday Success With Black Friday Strategies

#GivingTuesday is without a doubt one of the best things to happen to nonprofit fundraising, and this year’s event is scheduled for December 2. While the movement is still young, the results are undeniable. In fact, over $19.2 million in donations were made on #GivingTuesday in 2013. With that amount of money at stake, it’s imperative that nonprofits start planning as soon as possible. By utilizing many of the same strategies that traditional retailers employ for Black Friday, nonprofits can generate buzz, excitement and results.

Publicize a Specific Need
Human beings work best when they have a specific goal to work toward and donating money is no exception. Identify one major fundraising goal that you wish to accomplish on that day, whether it’s a piece of equipment or funding an activity. Advertise that goal heavily so that #GivingTuesday donors know what their donation will help your organization achieve. This gives donors additional motivation to help you reach your goal.

Take Advantage of the Deal Seeking Atmosphere
Consumers have been trained to seek out deals following Thanksgiving, and nonprofits can benefit from this mentality to gain more donations. Along with your #GivingTuesday campaigns, advertise how donors can take advantage of corporate matching programs. Including this information well in advance gives donors time to look up corporate workplace policies to determine if they are eligible.

Create a Media Buzz
#GivingTuesday is only in its third official year. That means that many people, including news outlets, haven’t heard about it. Your local news outlets are always looking for stories, so pitch several ideas to them about your #GivingTuesday efforts. You can help generate buzz by holding special giveaways or contests only on that day. You may even want to do several television or radio interviews throughout the day to update the public on how far you are from your goals.

Develop Your Social Media Strategy
One of the most powerful marketing campaign tools that you have is social media. Start by contacting your existing Twitter, Facebook and Instagram followers and asking them for help getting the word out. These social ambassadors will take much of the work off your hands. Assign a staff person, or a volunteer, to be in charge of posting updates regularly in advance of #GivingTuesday. Additionally, write a series of 10 or so posts that you will use throughout the actual day itself.

Count It Down
People tend to act when they think that time is running out. Consider creating a countdown clock to generate excitement and a sense of urgency. This greatly enhances donor engagement and serves as a powerful reminder for them as well.

The bottom line is that you don’t need to stress about it. There are lots of tips that can help you get your #GivingTuesday program in gear. Start somewhere, then next year you can build upon what you’ve learned. Good luck!