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7 Unique Ideas for Your Nonprofit to Stand Out on Giving Tuesday

Jasmine LeBlanc 10/25/18 4:08 PM

Just like everyone receives ads and emails about Black Friday and Cyber Monday, your audience will be hearing from a lot of nonprofits about Giving Tuesday. While emails, ads, and social media posts are all essential parts of any campaign, Giving Tuesday requires unique campaign ideas to stand out and grab your followers’ attention. We’ll go over seven unique ways to stand out on Giving Tuesday.

Use Different Mediums Online

Giving Tuesday is primarily a social media movement. To stand out, be sure to promote your campaign through different mediums online and share those to your social media accounts. We’ll give you a couple of examples:

1. Video

Get creative by making a video of you or your team promoting your Giving Tuesday campaign. The video can be silly and entertaining or have a more professional tone. Pick a tone that your donor persona would find compelling.

Don’t let the thought of creating a video scare you. It doesn’t have to be a grand film production. In fact, your video doesn’t even have to be that long. For example, the ideal length for videos on Facebook is 1 minute. Check out the best video length times for other social media platforms on this blog post.

Videos are such an effective way to stand out. Once you create your organization’s video, share it on your social media accounts, emails, blogs, etc.

Pro Tip: 85% of Facebook videos are watched without sound. To make sure your audience doesn’t miss your message, be sure to include captions on your video so that users can watch without the sound on.

2. Blog

Not every nonprofit chooses to dedicate their blog posts to content that is relevant to Giving Tuesday, such as success stories and donation results, so this is where your nonprofit can stand out. This content supplements your campaign because it’s proof that your organization can help the community when supported with donations.

If you already have this content, then you are ahead of the game. All you have to do now is promote this content on social media and mold the message to promote Giving Tuesday. Also, don’t forget to include a call-to-action (CTA) on your relevant blog posts that lead to your donation landing page.

If you don’t have this content, then focus on creating 2-3 short and sweet blog posts that highlight your Giving Tuesday campaign, such as success stories. Then, add Giving Tuesday CTAs to the post and promote them through your social media platforms and email!

This is a great way to repurpose meaningful content while standing out against your competitors who may only be running a one-day campaign.

Create a Viral Component

Another effective way to expand the reach of your Giving Tuesday campaign is to create a buzzworthy challenge for your community. We’ll discuss ways to create content that will be so enticing that it will be circulating your target audience’s newsfeeds quickly.

3. Community Challenge

A great way to increase awareness for your organization’s campaign is to turn to your local community and find a way to get them involved. A great example of a community challenge that went viral is the Ice Bucket Challenge for the ALS Association. Even if participants didn’t donate to the cause, they were still spreading awareness for the organization by creating a captivating video for their followers.

Expanding your reach is key to stand out to your audience. Here are a couple of fun ways to “challenge” your community:

  • Create a scavenger hunt

Create a fun scavenger hunt for your community to participate in by hiding clues all over town and encouraging participants to take pictures along the way. Include a fun prize at the very end for those who solve all of the riddles. Be sure to have a catchy hashtag that participants can use when sharing photos on their social media accounts.

This idea is great for creating awareness for your organization. If you are looking to raise funds through this idea, then you can charge a small fee to participate in the scavenger hunt. Be sure to include a valuable prize at the end if you choose to go this route, so that people can see the value of paying a small price to participate.

  • Conduct a Give-a-Thon

Nowadays, you don’t have to go on cable TV to do a give-a-thon, you can do it directly from your social media account using Facebook Live or YouTube Live.

Be sure to promote your give-a-thon ahead of time through save-the-date emails and social media posts so that your followers know about it. Next, you’ll need to decide how long you want to livestream your event. Whatever time length you choose, be sure that you have enough content for the duration of your give-a-thon.

    • Content for a give-a-thon includes:
      • Discussion topics related to your cause
      • Success stories or testimonials from your supporters or staff
      • Updates on how much you’ve raised through the duration of the event

Keep your audience hooked by providing a fun incentive to donate. For every milestone you hit with your goal, reward your viewers with a form of entertainment such as a funny lip-sync performance from your staff or a staff member eating a really bizarre food choice. Get creative and make it something that your viewers would want to see! By doing this, you are challenging your community to donate together in order to see the end result.

4. Staff Challenge

Another way to get noticed for Giving Tuesday is to organize a challenge that involves your staff. This is very similar to the give-a-thon idea, except you don’t have to livestream on social media for this idea.

For example, you can set a fundraising goal and promise your followers that your team will do something funny, like throwing a pie in your CEO’s face or setting them up in a dunk tank. Keep your target audience in mind when thinking of the challenge so that they find it intriguing enough to donate. And remember that the more unique your idea is, the better your chances are of going viral!

Another take you can do on the staff challenge is to provide an incentive for your team. Do an internal competition to see who can refer the most donors until a specific goal is met. Choose a prize for the winner so that the team is motivated to help spread the word.

5. Give Even More Back

Your organization already provides a service to the community, but think about ways that you can give back even more. Your generosity could peak your community’s interest. For example, you could plant a tree in the community for every time you hit a milestone in your fundraising goal.

By giving back even more to the community, you will build up an excellent reputation for your organization. Create buzzworthy social media posts for your followers to share on their timelines and newsfeeds to spread the word of your act of kindness.

Go Offline

Giving Tuesday is an online movement, but that’s exactly why you should use offline marketing to set yourself apart. We'll go over the best offline marketing ideas for your campaign.

6. Offline Marketing

These traditional offline marketing ideas may need to be planned ahead of time, but the result will be worth it! Here are some ideas on spreading the word out about your campaign:

  • Send save-the-date mailers to your current donors and supporters
  • Place a Giving Tuesday ad in your local newspaper that has a short URL link to your donation landing page.
  • Have a local radio or TV station promote your nonprofit’s campaign on air.

Read this article to find out more on why offline marketing is effective in expanding your nonprofit’s reach.

7. Community Partnership

Many companies partner with nonprofits to participate in Giving Tuesday. It’s a win-win because your nonprofit gets additional exposure, while your partner gets the opportunity to show off their philanthropic efforts.

Here are some ideas of local companies in your area that you can reach out to partner with:

  • Restaurants
  • Breweries
  • Car Dealerships
  • Coffee Shops

When you partner with a company to help support your campaign, they can either match the total gifts you receive on Giving Tuesday or donate a certain percentage of their sales to you on that day. Read this article for tips on how to pitch a corporate partnership!


Hopefully this list of unique ideas inspired you to get creative for this year's Giving Tuesday. If you are interested in free Giving Tuesday marketing resources, then check out our latest roundup of those sources in this blog post