Countdown to Giving Tuesday: 3 pieces of advice

The second annual Giving Tuesday is on December 3! Initially created by a nonprofit in New York, this movement brings charitable giving to the forefront during what is arguably the most shopping-heavy time of the holiday season. On the heels of Black Friday and Cyber Monday, Giving Tuesday marks a national day of philanthropy that encourages all of us to celebrate and support nonprofit organizations.

As we count down to Giving Tuesday 2013, here are three pieces of advice for your nonprofit:

1. Get on the bandwagon! If you're not already an official partner, become one now. Giving Tuesday is very likely here to stay. It proved a big hit in its first year, with more than 2,500 official nonprofit partners from every state in the country joining the movement. Giving increased 53% on Giving Tuesday 2012, compared to 2011's Tuesday after Thanksgiving--and the average online gift size increased 25%. If these out-of-the-gate figures are any indication, GT is a keeper whose impact on nonprofits everywhere will probably grow over time. 

2. Use the hashtag liberally. In my opinion, the hashtag #GivingTuesday is one of the most powerful tools of this new movement. On Nov. 27, 2012, it garnered 2.5 million social media impressions and was mentioned 185,000 times in social media, resulting in international trending on Twitter. Between now and next Tuesday, use that hashtag liberally on your website, your Twitter feed, your Facebook page--wherever your nonprofit has an online presence. Let your donors and the greater cyber community know that as a leading nonprofit agency in your area, you're the local embodiment of all that GT stands for--and are therefore very deserving of charitable support. 

3. Get creative. Use the GT "brand" to get more attention and dollars for your nonprofit; after all, that's what the movement is meant to do! Encourage your constituents to band together on December 3 to donate as much as they can collectively to your cause. Remind your followers to ask their employers if they match gifts. Mobilize volunteers under the GT banner. Think about how you can incorporate Giving Tuesday into your messaging over the next week, and then plan for a big GT splash next year!

How will you engage with Giving Tuesday 2013?

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