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Now that GivingTuesday has come and gone, we thought we’d share some insights on how fundraising efforts across our community performed on the big day. While the most successful customers use NationBuilder to organize every day of the year, the time and energy that goes into mobilizing supporters for this single day of action warrants a closer look at the results.

What we saw this year reaffirms a key principle grounding our software—that it pays to put people at the center of everything you do. Here are a few takeaways that we hope will be helpful as you finish the 2020 giving season and plan for 2021.

Email is still king
It’s likely no surprise that during this year of mostly-virtual organizing, email drove the majority of donations. Of all the donations that came through on December 1, 70% were tagged as originating from an email blast. And in most cases, emails sent on GivingTuesday were the culmination of a longer-term email strategy to cultivate supporters and ready them for this important moment.

Membership programs matter
One helpful way to deepen engagement with the people in your database is to give them tiered memberships that recognize and reward their level of contribution to your cause. We saw that 20% of our customers’ GivingTuesday donations—and the greatest number of gifts across our communitywere tied to membership programs.

Cultivating donors takes time
Of all the supporters who donated, the average amount of time each donor had spent in an organization’s database before GivingTuesday was 26 months. It’s telling that on average, fruitful donor relationships were built over the course of more than two years. Since relationships aren’t built overnight, your community engagement efforts should be a long-term investment.

And that time is well spent
Donors who had contributed before showed greater generosity, giving an average of $90, versus an average of $80 from new donors. The difference was even greater for donors who had a previously logged contactsupporters who had been contacted 1:1 donated an average of $108, which is 35% higher than the overall average. So, it’s well worth the effort to develop and maintain donor relationships that will inspire people to give more over time.

This aggregated, anonymized data from across our platform validates an important point about GivingTuesday success: isn’t just about the tactics you use on the day itself. It’s also the payoff for the time and care you invest in your supporters year-round. So, set a goal to deepen your relationship with your GivingTuesday donors with a personal touch before next giving season, so you can see even better results next year. 


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