Moving the needle: why UK charities should participate in #GivingTuesday (Guest Post)

| 31st Oct 14

In this guest post, Jon Biedermann, Vice President of DonorPerfect Fundraising Software, looks at the success of #GivingTuesday in the US and provides compelling evidence as to why UK charities should join this global movement.

#GivingTuesday, the worldwide movement to create a day of giving to kick-off the giving season on the Tuesday after the US holiday Thanksgiving, is fundamentally moving the needle and helping not for profits raise more awareness and donations. Organisations who participate are attracting new donors and raising more money than their peers.

All December Donations Increased by 6.8%

Based on research by DonorPerfect, not for profits who participate in #GivingTuesday outgrew their non-participating peers in the all-important December fundraising season by nearly two to one. That is, those who participated grew their overall fundraising in December 2013 vs. 2012 by 6.8%, while those who did not only grew 3.7%.

And for online giving, it’s even more dramatic.

December Online Donations Grew by 19.4%!

Not for profits participating in #GivingTuesday saw an increase in online giving of 19.4% in December 2013 vs. 2012, while those who did not participate in #GivingTuesday only grew their December online fundraising 8.4%.

In other words, #GivingTuesday participants outgrew their non-participating peers in online donations by 2.3 times- a striking performance gap!

While the survey relies on a convenient sample size of 546 organisations who collected both offline and online donations through DonorPerfect in the last 3 years, it does provide a very useful basis for benchmarking and analysis (331 were #GivingTuesday participants in both years vs. 215 who did not participate, or only participated once).

In addition, the average size (based on annual contribution revenue) of all organizations in the sample was just under $1 million/year, and addresses the concerns some have expressed that #GivingTuesday was successful only for large organizations.

Simply put, #GivingTuesday is materially moving the fundraising needle, and is NOT time-shifting or otherwise cannibalising gifts that may have been made anyway. When #GivingTuesday was first launched, many in the industry thought cannibaliswation was a concern- which was a very reasonable hypothesis. But the evidence is clear- #GivingTuesday is truly the tide that raises all boats.

Finally, like most everything else that leads to success, it does take planning and work to pull off a successful #GivingTuesday campaign. While simply having an online donation page and sending a blast email is a start, more successful organisations know that a multi-channel marketing strategy combined with their normal end-of-year campaign will bring the most benefit.

If your organisation is participating in #GivingTuesday, great job! If not, please let your colleagues know about this research, and join today! Simply visit to learn more.

As a society, there can never be enough giving, and #GivingTuesday can move the needle for your favorite charity too. Come join us!