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How to make the most of GivingTuesday

Posted November 3, 2021 by Virginia Davidson

Make the most of GivingTuesday

GivingTuesday, celebrated on the Tuesday following Thanksgiving, marks a refreshing change from Black Friday and Cyber Monday. GivingTuesday is about making a difference in our communities through philanthropy and volunteerism. Many organizations use GivingTuesday to raise additional funds online, but that’s not the only option. If you’re not sure how your organization should approach this giving day, this article can help.

How to make the most of GivingTuesday for your organization

Try these 3 unique GivingTuesday ideas:

Idea #1: Recruit volunteers

GivingTuesday isn’t only about fundraising. It’s also about volunteerism. You can leverage this day to recruit new volunteers for your organization. Consider building an online form to collect contact information from people who are interested in volunteering in the future. When you set up the confirmation email, let the potential volunteers know they’ll hear from your organization in January. You can harness the energy of the new year to onboard new volunteers who are eager to get involved.

Idea #2: Ask for in-kind gifts

You can use GivingTuesday to accept in-kind gifts, too. These could be items that are used for your organization’s programs and mission, or supplies that your staff needs throughout the year. Either way, in-kind gifts can save your organization money and broaden your network of supporters. If you take this approach, you’ll need to be specific about what items you’ll accept. Be sure you have an in-kind gift policy in place, too, so you don’t wind up receiving irrelevant items. Consider directing supporters to purchase goods through a particular local business so these purchases support your local economy, too.

Idea #3: Take a lightweight approach

If you already have multiple fundraising efforts underway at this time, or you’re short-staffed, you may feel like you’re only participating in GivingTuesday because you have to. If that’s the case, you’re not the only organization that feels that way. You know your fundraising plan and your donors best. If a GivingTuesday appeal feels like it will compete with your other efforts or overwhelm your organization’s capacity, it’s okay to choose to take a lightweight approach.

Of course, you don’t want to discourage any donors from giving if they’re inspired on GivingTuesday, or make it appear as if you’re unaware of this day. So if you do decide to take a lightweight approach, you should still do the following:


How you choose to leverage GivingTuesday will depend on the needs and capacity of your organization. Your approach may change from one year to the next. The important thing is to give your community the opportunity to support you, and to solicit the specific support that your organization needs. Whatever you decide, finalize your plans and test your operations at least two weeks before GivingTuesday. This deadline accommodates the Thanksgiving holiday and will give you time to make sure your systems are ready for GivingTuesday.

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