Turkey and Twitter: Birds of a Feather on #GivingTuesday | npENGAGE

Turkey and Twitter: Birds of a Feather on #GivingTuesday

By on Oct 17, 2018


Giving Tuesday tips

I just confirmed my dog sitter for Thanksgiving, which means I’m set to make the trip to my parents’ house and enjoy the holiday with my family. I’m a car-free city dweller and where my parents live isn’t exactly easy to get to—so this takes some planning. My nephews will also be visiting. I love them, but they wake up early and aren’t known for letting the rest of us sleep in. So despite my mother’s offers of hospitality, I also planned a hotel room into my stay.

For this one day out of the year I need a good bit of forward planning to make sure my holiday isn’t more stressful than tradition requires. For many charities, #GivingTuesday (the Tuesday following Thanksgiving in the U.S.) is no different. You’ve spent most of the year inspiring your supporters and engaging them in your shared cause. But how easily will donors be able to donate when the first tweet drops? To make the most out of #GivingTuesday you need to be prepared—here are some things to consider:

  • Who is coming for dinner? Do they know they can bring a guest? If you don’t send out invitations to the party, fewer people will attend. 65% of people find out about a cause through their friends. Start reaching out to the people who share and like your Facebook and Twitter posts. Let them know you appreciate them as fans. And let them know there’s a big day coming up and you want them to be part of it!  

Tip: Provide your potential champions with hashtags, content, images, and links to better identify your brand, unify your supporters, and make their participation easier. 

Dive deeper into social media strategy across all your platforms with Blackbaud University’s workshop class Best Practices: Social Media for Social Good” 

  • Are we ready to get cooking? Wait, they don’t eat what?! You can’t start cooking without the right equipment, and you can’t manage an online giving campaign without the right software. 82% of people agree that social media is effective at getting people involved in an issue, and 55% who engage via social media go on to take further action. But there are some moving pieces to be considered. How everything connects needs to be as smooth as possible for the donor and for the data behind the scenes.  

Are you ready to take instant donations on social media? By considering the means and methods someone may choose to support you—and making those paths clear—you’ll be ready to accept and process that support.  

Tip: Test your links. Test some payments. Then consider the variety of donors you’re reaching out to and the ways in which they might choose to support you, and make sure you have the right tools to make you successful. 

  • They ended up where? Let me give them directions. Sometimes despite the best preparation, things break, people make mistakes, and even the savviest donor needs help. Not only do we need to ensure our platforms are ready to receive our supporters, we need to be ready to guide them through any problems they may encounter during the process. People need to be able to get in touch with support resources and easily find the answers to their questions.  

Tip: Provide an FAQ page or section for any concerns you anticipate. Make sure appropriate contact information is available for people to reach out to and make sure they know how followup will occur. 

  • Now let’s see who shows up at the table! When someone gets involved, you need to know about it. You want others to know about it, too. That’s how you make an online giving event effective. Remind your supporters to have fun with their involvement, to challenge their friends, and most importantly to let others know when folks get involved, so they can retweet about it!

Remember—these tactics only work if people get involved. The easier you make that involvement and lower any barriers for entry, the better your results will be.

Not subscribed to Blackbaud University’s Organizational Best Practices courses? Sign up to learn more and ensure that your #GivingTuesday strategies are set up for success. 


Matt Connell, CFRE believes in connecting people to information and resources and is passionate about bringing understanding and access closer to being in reach. This passion has led him to a career in the nonprofit sector where he has honed his talents as an educator, fundraiser, researcher, and analyst. Matt is a Senior Instructor for Blackbaud where he helps to lead and develop their team of instructors in the delivery of training for nonprofit professionals.

When he’s not working with nonprofit organizations or the Blackbaud team, Matt is probably spending time with his dog Pete. He also enjoys cycling and home-brewing, another passion Matt occasionally enjoys ‘researching.’

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