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6 Tips to Make the Most of Giving Tuesday in 2021

By Oliver Shiel August 12, 2021

The world needs nonprofits now more than ever. Organisations across the world are responding to the devastating pandemic by using everything at their disposal to make lasting change in their communities, and Giving Tuesday offers a significant fundraising opportunity for the sector to recruit new supporters and volunteers.

Giving Tuesday — now a primarily digital-first giving movement — is a great opportunity for nonprofits to engage with current and new supporters using a multi-channel digital marketing mix. Last year, in the U.K. alone, over £20m was donated to good causes for Giving Tuesday, a 43% increase in giving from 2019 — that’s more than £14k every minute!

Giving Tuesday offers opportunities for every organisation, large or small. Of course, there is a concern about ‘cutting through the noise’ in a crowded marketplace, so in this blog we aim to offer you some best practice tips to make the most of your Giving Tuesday 2021 efforts.

Woman holding phone
Giving Tuesday is a great opportunity for nonprofits to engage with current and new supporters using a multi-channel digital marketing mix.

1. Set Achievable Goals

It’s good to start with a specific goal in mind. This will help you measure whether or not your campaign has been a success and will give you a benchmark for the year following if it’s your first time getting involved.

A good example of a charity planning a Giving Tuesday campaign is the children’s health charity, Tiny Tickers. They set out to raise £750 for a new machine to measure oxygen levels in babies’ blood, but significantly exceed their original target.

“We were blown away, to say the least, that we were able to fund six machines in one day,” said Katie Lawson, head of fundraising and communications at Tiny Tickers.

Not all charities will surpass expectations to this extent but by being clear (and realistic) on what you want to achieve, you can set yourself up for success. Start small and measure the ROI, that way you’ll have a better idea of what to expect the following year.

2. Get Planning Now

Like all end-of-year campaigns, planning early means you get ahead and avoid the end-of-year burnout often suffered by fundraisers at their busiest time of year. Many nonprofits think Giving Tuesday might be out of scope in terms of resources, but if you incorporate it as part of your end-of-year campaign journey, you can repurpose content instead of creating completely new content.

“Giving Tuesday is managed as a separate campaign, but slots nicely into our Christmas appeal. Strong case studies and great photography help to deliver our message,” said Pamela Vass, digital fundraising executive at Sightsavers.

3. Know Your Audience

Personalise your messaging to increase engagement. By knowing what programs your supporters are interested in and which channels they most engage with, you can ensure you are reaching them with the right message in the right place while also ensuring you are making the best use of your resources.

Tailoring your communications based on your supporters’ interests and preferences will allow you to deliver more personalised and meaningful content — which will most certainly yield better results for your Giving Tuesday efforts.

“Having the tools to track the data is really helpful, so you can see what is and isn’t working,” explained Laura McGrath, senior director of industry solutions product marketing for Nonprofit Cloud at

4. Create Compelling Content

Think about the content your supporters want to read and what will have the most meaning for them. Engagement is the most important element of any Giving Tuesday strategy, so spend time planning and crafting the story you want to tell to engage and inspire people to give.

Having one compelling ask or story to share to help raise funds for a specific program is the best route, as multiple asks and stories might get lost amongst the noise — especially on social media.

“We had very serious messaging behind the campaign but we wanted something that could unite our supporters and the ‘heart parent’ community, and turn a terribly sad situation into something positive” Lawson shared.

5. Try Something New

Take the opportunity to try something new for Giving Tuesday that you might not have done before — like gaming! Gaming Tuesday is an initiative for gamers to give back on Giving Tuesday, making it an opportunity to engage a vibrant new community and tap into a rapidly-growing fundraising stream.

Last year, Save the Children raised over £100K during Gaming Tuesday. Check out our Gaming for Good podcast series, which offers tons of advice from gamers, streamers, and nonprofits on how to get started.

“We’re reaching an audience we’ve never been able to before, this is the next generation of advocates, this is the next generation of donors,” said Mike Elliot, director of emerging markets at The Humane Society.

6. Show Your Appreciation

Make sure to thank your Giving Tuesday donors for their support, and keep in contact with them after the day ends. An engaged and inspired donor is a repeat donor! Always keep messaging personal and showcase the impact of their donation so they feel appreciated and know they are making an impact on your mission. This might sound like a lot of work, but automation and technology can help.

“Every good fundraiser knows the importance of a thank you so we always send out a thank-you email and social post the day after Giving Tuesday to celebrate what we’ve managed to achieve with our supporters,” Vass explained.

We recently launched Marketing Cloud for Nonprofits, which takes out a lot of the heavy lifting of building a new donor journey thanks to easy-to-use, out-of-the-box templates.

Would you like to learn more about how you can raise more funds using digital tactics? Join our Digital Fundraising Bootcamp, an engaging seven day email journey outlining best practice advice across all aspects of digital marketing and fundraising.

About the Author

Oliver Shiel, Senior Manager, Campaigns at
Oliver Shiel
Senior Manager, Nonprofit Campaigns at
Oliver (He/Him/His) works on the EMEA marketing team, focused on Nonprofit campaigns, and has been working at for four years. He is a proud member of both Outforce and Earthforce — an advocate for equality and the environment.