Tuesday, November 27, 2012

The 2012 #GivingTuesday Challenge

What can we learn about giving by donating to others? A great deal. 
Today, I decided to put Giving Tuesday to good use for us all.  I have decided to analyze the online giving experience for donors for some organizations.  In partnership with Giving Tuesday, I'm doing an online giving challenge from those who want to join and some are selected via a "random" method... I asked via social media for volunteers and also by asking a random sampling of coworkers who the nonprofit is that if given $1 million and it had to go to one charity, who would that organization be, thus my test group of 15 organizations. I have places from habitat for humanity to American Cancer society to many others, please see the attached spreadsheet.  I plan on giving online in amounts ranging from $10-$1000.
Here’s the things we will measure together: How many clicks it takes to get to their giving site, how long the gift takes to complete, is it mobile friendly?, how am I receipted and acknowledged?,  and also is it linked to social media for sharing, if I tweet the org saying I just gave, will they tweet back?
Also later we will examine acknowledgment and stewardship for the gift and also how quickly I am re-solicited and whether or not this happens before I am properly thanked...
Here we go, let’s begin…
Here is the Spreadsheet...

Fascinating info and I will update the data as the day goes along... here are some screenshots of the Good:

The Bad:

and things we can implement:

THIS IS FANTASTIC!!! Charity Water Wins the Response Screen Mesaging

Here is what I have learned:
1. Not enough Social Media Exposure
2. Giving  Websites were not mobile friendly
3. Not enough places gave me the option to give in honor of someoneand even then only in written format, not through email. The Red Cross told my honoree how much I GAVE!! ARGH!
4. I've already been solicited again!
5. There is no excuse for having a "CAPTCHA" hurdle to jump in order to give
6. Sites are arduous and repetetive, too many sitews prescribe dollar amounts
1. The impact can be shown, look at Charity Water
2. Sites are starting to be better about showing where to find social media
3. So far a good response from some of those I tweeted
4. I saw a site's button that said: "Save a Life" much better than "Add to Cart" or "Submit"
5.  We have room to grow
6. I gave away a lot of money today, join me on #Giving Tuesday

The offer stands: I will make a gift to anyone and discuss their online giving site and response should they want it... be ready for honesty.
I would love to hear what you think, we have one more step to go to find out how I am formally acknowledged and how fastthey resolicit me!

I look forward to your commentary and let me know if you want to join the experiment.


  1. love what you are doing - American cancer society has to be the worst organization - it profits FROM cancer, there is no intention to find cures. since we know the cure why are they funding research as if there is no cure? Most non profits fund causes they are guilty in creating. they dont' want to change their lifestyle but have this inner guilty so they donate to those that suffer from their actions. What they give does not stop causes but rather increases causes which increases global problems. Humanities biggest enemy today is giving - how we give is so wrong. We need to learn how to give before giving which usually means stop how you earn your own living - change how you earn your own living and you help change the globe. medical is a good example - causes create illness but doctors today profit from pills which solves no problems. it's like giving a pain killer and ignoring the causes that creates the pain. eventually the causes that creates your pain will also kill you. The best is wall street - they know their living causes global poverty yet they still earn their money doing the wrong thing but give to the small percentage they destroy - insanity.

    we need a new plan, we need to educate ourselves on a completely different reality. globaltshirtfriday.com is my effort to make a shift on a global scale. I have plenty of work to do, I'm just one person. but if everything is wrong on the planet that means there is massive opportunity to do the right thing - the universe is hiring - who is looking for a new job?

    1. Judy, I appreciate your thoughts, perhaps next time they could be a little more topic focused?

  2. What a great idea and a great day to give to so many wonderful orgs! I'm in the process of overhauling our (Habitat for Humanity of Jacksonville) online donation page, more engaging language, adding video etc. I'd love to hear your thoughts on our donation page/process as is. www.habijax.org.

    1. I'll take a look this afternoon and give you a report! Thanks for working hard at improving!

    2. I completed your analysis. Send me an email to receive it! lynne@donorrelationsguru.com

  3. Love it and thanks for sharing!!

  4. Great idea, Lynne! Thanks for doing this and sharing it with everyone. I find that many nonprofit websites don't make it easy enough to give in the first place. The donate link is buried on the site or it takes multiple clicks to find the form. Hopefully your experience will push more nonprofits to improve their online giving experience.


    1. Kevn, I couldn't agree more! That's why I counted the # of clicks it takes to get to a real live giving page! It should be less than 2

  5. Great info to keep in mind as I work to launch my own non-profit. Excited to see VCU Massey Cancer Center made the "Good" list!

  6. Of course #GivingTuesday coincides with our Blackbaud back end upgrade, so we can't send people to our site as to not make it crash. Next year for sure.

    Thanks Lynn as always!

    1. Robin, is there a work around you could implement for the day?

  7. This is a fantastic idea -- I'd also suggest that you make some of your donations as monthly gifts and evaluate how you are stewarded by different organizations......

  8. Lynne, this is so refreshing! I think the last test factor - how do they respond if you tweet that you just gave - is really a critical step in developing relationships that many overlook. What did you find out about their responses?

    Also, from this small sample, could you extrapolate any trends that you hadn't seen previously?

    Best, Debra