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Get On Board: Expectations and predictions for Giving Tuesday 2020

November 1, 2020
4 minutes

Giving Tuesday 2020 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 2020 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 2020 is going to be epic (yup, we said it again!) And that reason is the following number:

$605 million.

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 December 1st, aka Giving Tuesday 2020.

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

Whole Whale used an adjusted linear regression to land on $605 million—which, bee tee dubs, happens to be an 18% increase over the amount raised online on Giving Tuesday 2019 ($400 million.) 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 pressures on donors.

What does it all mean?

“So what does this mean for my nonprofit’s ability to fundraise on Giving Tuesday 2020 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

Okay. Most of us are still under quarantine to some extent or another, and that’s certainly having an effect on the economy. Many businesses have 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 out of work, well, this might not be your best Giving Tuesday ever. But if your donor base has escaped Coronavirus-inflicted bank account shrinkage, this could be a very good year indeed.

Donor Enthusiasm

One of Whole Whale’s data points in the adjusted linear regression they used to come up with that fabulous $605 million number was the massive increase in Google searches for “Giving Tuesday 2020”. That points to a certain level of enthusiasm—and as you’re aware, enthusiasm is critical to the success of any fundraising campaign.

How enthusiastic are your donors with regards your mission? Have you kept in touch with your major donors this year? Enthusiasm regarding your nonprofit will help you land a bigger haul this Giving Tuesday.

That Giving Spirit

On the flip side, the pandemic has brought out the best in many of us. The giving spirit abounds currently and people are eager to help one another. If your donor base is eager to contribute, that’s a great sign regarding your ultimate Giving Tuesday raise.

How much time have you spent promoting Giving Tuesday?

Giving Tuesday takes work, 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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