Get On Board: Expectations and predictions for Giving Tuesday 2022

September 19, 2022
4 minutes

Giving Tuesday 2022 is gonna be epic.

And listen, we're comfortable saying this for a number of reasons. First, we know how much work you and your nonprofit’s team of unicorns are putting into your Giving Tuesday 2022 strategy. You’re writing the emails; you’re prepping your ask letter; you’re organizing your volunteers. That’s right: you’re doing the dang thing and you’re doin’ it, doin’ it, doin’ it well.

There’s another (super exciting, completely evidence-based, backed up by rock-hard numbers) reason we're beyond certain that Giving Tuesday 2022 is going to be epic (yup, we said it again!) And that reason is the following number:

$3.2 Billion. (yes, with a "B".)

If you’re wondering what that massive number is doing there, sitting smack-dab in the middle of your screen, we’re here to inform you that that is Whole Whale’s prediction regarding the online amount to be raised this November 29th, aka Giving Tuesday 2022.

How’d they come up with that number, anyway?

Whole Whale used "a combination of linear regression and asking AI-generated question monsters" to land on $3.2B—which, bee tee dubs, happens to be an 18% increase over the amount raised online on Giving Tuesday 2021 ($2.7B.) The adjusted linear regression took into account last year’s ginormous haul, historical trends as to the growth of Giving Tuesday year over year, Google search trends, and the current economic and societal pressures on donors.

What does it all mean?

“So what does this mean for my nonprofit’s ability to fundraise on Giving Tuesday 2022 and our yearly budget?” you ask.

Well, first things first. Let’s establish that this is a prediction, not a certainty. We think it’s a pretty darn good prediction based upon the mathematics behind Whole Whale’s reasoning, plus they have a great track record. But we’re not Nostradamus and even if we were, he was wrong a lot of the time, so let’s not put all of our faith in possibly-fictional characters from the ancient past.

BUT. If you’re trying to predict your own Giving Tuesday fundraising total—and if you're reading this article, we think it’s quite likely you're trying to do that—here are some factors to take into account.

The Economic Situation

Inflation is the word of the year, y'all. The economy has taken a massive hit this year and that means many of our pocketbooks have taken a corresponding hit.

Check in with your donors! See how they’re doing. If everyone’s splashing out for luxuries like gas, milk, and housing, well, this might not be your best Giving Tuesday ever. But if your donor base is holding steady with employment and community, this could be a very good year indeed.

Midterm Drama & Donation Drain

Drama, drama, drama! With all the political turmoil and upheaval that the U.S. has seen in the past years, and the push to hold power at every level that has gripped our nation, donors may be focused elsewhere. They may be emotionally drained... so, begin talking to them before their wallets are drained as well!

Check in with your donors prior to Giving Tuesday, ahead of the midterm elections. Give them a guarantee that their donation will do some real good this Giving Tuesday—when it comes to investments, a sure thing is hard to pass up.

Low Unemployment

On the other hand, employment is up, workers are taking control of their schedules, and remote work is here to stay. And since low unemployment aligns with increased donations, your nonprofit may be in for a Giving Tuesday to remember.

Supply Chain Issues

Whole Whale notes that with "supply chain issues possibly slowing traditional spending on gifts", physical gifts may make way for donations as gifts. At first blush, this may seem like a reach, but upon further scrutiny, it's got legs. Especially if your nonprofit can boost this message during your 2022 Giving Tuesday outreach. There are lots of folks who attempt to get all of their holiday shopping done on Black Friday—what if they can get it all done on Giving Tuesday instead? Without the stress of backorders and shipping delays and smashed packages? Sounds like a good deal to us.

Looking Back

2022 marks the 10th anniversary of Giving Tuesday—meaning that many nonprofiteers remember that first year we tried this wacky idea. But do you remember how much was raised on Giving Tuesday 2012? An adorable $12 million. (Yes, with an "m".)

And now, a mere decade later, we're looking at an epic(!) prediction of $3.2 BILLION.

A Generosity Tsunami

Giving Tuesday totals may have crept up on you. $3.2B may feel too big to make sense of. So let's look back for a frame of reference: pulling each Giving Tuesday's totals, pre-pandemic growth was minimum 44% each year. Every year from 2012 to 2019, Giving Tuesday grew at least 44% year-over-year. From 2019 to 2021, growth was 37%.

This is an amazing, incredible, mind-boggling amplification of generosity—and it's ongoing.

Put it into perspective

We all know what a nonprofit unicorn is, but in the for-profit world, the term has a much different meaning. A unicorn company is a company that has attained a $1B valuation. These are often huge, household name companies, like Spotify, Tesla, Facebook, Airbnb... you get the picture. If Giving Tuesday were a for-profit company, it would easily be a unicorn as well—and with just one day each year of tracked revenue generation.

The average time it takes unicorns to attain that magical $1B valuation? 7 years. So, how long did it take Giving Tuesday to break the Big B? 7 years. That's faster than Eventbrite, Glassdoor, FitBit, BuzzFeed, Shopify, Etsy, Wayfair, SpaceX, and lots more.

How much time have you spent promoting Giving Tuesday?

Giving Tuesday takes work, nonprofit unicorns! The more time you spend planning your Giving Tuesday strategy and—even better—putting that strategy into action, the better your Giving Tuesday results are likely to be. If your Giving Tuesday efforts are limited to a single post on social media, you might not do that well.

Buuuut if you email, text, call, post, promote, and push Giving Tuesday like it’s a rock up a hill and you’re Sisyphus, you’re likely to raise far more—and that’s money you can use all year, not just on Giving Tuesday.

Here’s a pro-tip: if you don’t have the time and/or resources to plan a Giving Tuesday strategy all by your lonesome, download Funraise’s handy dandy Giving Tuesday Toolkit!

Look at your trends.

Has your nonprofit raised more money each year on Giving Tuesday than the last? That’s a sign you’ll raise more money this year, too. Look at historical trends when predicting your Giving Tuesday raise. That’ll help you predict what might be in store for this year.

Last word

None of us can see the future, so it’s impossible to predict with absolute certainty what’s going to happen this Giving Tuesday. However, with a few data points, you can make a pretty darn good guess—and we think our friends over at Whole Whale did just that. If you’re still nervous about Giving Tuesday, download Funraise’s toolkit and start planning... we predict you’ll love it.

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