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How #GivingTuesday shapes year-end fundraising

Cassie Tatone // Giving Gateway contributor

We made it. High-five! We’ve officially entered the holiday season - albeit a ‘little’ different than in previous years. Nonetheless, the season still offers us the ability to refocus attention towards our community, our families and ourselves. Whether it's finding innovative ways to create shared experiences, pushing the pause button on the fire-hose of news or extending a helping hand towards others who are suffering from the impacts of Covid-19, this time of year invites a shift in behaviour.

Thankfully, in between pumpkins and pine trees, there is another holiday that has crept into Canadian consciousness.

GivingTuesday, the annual day of giving will take place on Tuesday, December 1st, following Black Friday and Cyber Monday. It is meant to counter the previous days of consumerism with a focus on giving back, donating to worthy causes, and amplifying the charitable sector. As it grows in popularity, many charitable organizations begin to question the value of participating. Is it worth the time and resources? Or will it cannibalize on their other end of year campaigns?

At RaiseDays, we’re pretty familiar with the benefits of this type of fundraising strategy, so we’ve done the research for you, to show why GivingTuesday and short burst fundraisers are great opportunities for your cause.

Boost your end of year campaigns

Participating in GivingTuesday is sure to bring in a burst of contributions, but using it to market and kickstart your own year-end campaign is a key to success in December. Remember, 9% of donations come during the final four days of the year, so use the momentum of GivingTuesday to keep the conversation active. Network For Good reports that charities who participated in GivingTuesday raised 5x more overall during year-end. GivingTuesday has also made the list of top 3 days for giving alongside December 30th and 31st. Incorporating it in your year-end will keep your messaging relevant and help reach new target audiences.

Donors are looking for you

During GivingTuesday, the tables have turned for donors and charities. According to GivingTuesday Canada, more than $21.9M was donated online during last year’s campaign. This is one of the rare occasions where donors are actively searching for organizations whose mission and values resonate with them. By being well prepared, using the appropriate hashtags, and remaining vocal about their cause, organizations are likely to catch the eye of existing and even new supporters.

New donor acquisition

Donor acquisition is a core component of any fundraising campaign, as first-time donors are often easier to convert into repeat donors. The global recognition and awareness of GivingTuesday helps set the stage for organizations to convey their value proposition to a broader audience. Many charities receive gifts from first-time donors during this event. In 2017, there was a 54% increase in new monthly donation commitments, with overall data concluding that GivingTuesday sparks a burst in donations that trends upwards, rather than spiking and falling.

Online giving increases year after year

Online giving and mobile donations increase year after year. According to The Giving Report, online giving went up by 17% in 2017, three times higher than the growth of overall donations. Additionally, donations from mobile (smartphone and tablet) users grew 33% last year, compared to 25% for desktop users.

With the pandemic causing many charitable organizations to rethink how they fundraise, we’ve seen more digital campaigns than ever before. As the demand for innovative virtual fundraising solutions grows, it’s important for charities to demonstrate that they are progressive and donor-centric by being active participants in online giving days like GivingTuesday and other short-burst giving strategies.


Now that we all understand what helps drive the success of short-burst fundraisers like Giving Tuesday, think about what other opportunities there might be to highlight your organization’s mission throughout the year. When you’re ready to start planning your own giving day, give us a call, we’d love to help. In the meantime, visit Raise Days to learn more.

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