6 Reasons Higher Ed Should Participate in #GivingTuesday This Year


An annual, global event of giving back. Following Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, and Cyber Monday, #GivingTuesday is a day that showcases humanity at its best. It is a day to rally your community to make a positive impact on the world.

In celebration of the adventure to come, here are six reasons why higher education should absolutely participate in #GivingTuesday with their own campaign this year:


1. Engage young alumni

Your young alumni are more generous than you may realize, though it is possible you are still in the process of learning what motivates them to give to your institution. Overall, a millennial’s giving habits look much different than the generations preceding them – according to the 2015 Millennial Impact Report, most want to see the tangible impact of their donation, and they are greatly influenced by their peers.

Queue a #GivingTuesday campaign.

Showcase a cause that resonates with your young alumni. Encourage Peer-to-Peer fundraising. Gamify your campaign. Leverage what you know about your young alumni with this global event.


2. Increase social media participation

Giving is contagious.

Seeing others make charitable donations increases the likelihood that an individual will give as well. Thanks to social media, sharing that you gave to a cause that matters to you and encouraging your network to do the same is easier than ever.

When you throw in the fact that the majority of people do share causes on social media, you really can’t lose. According to New York Times Customer Insight Group, 84% of people share content on social media because it’s a way to support causes or issues that they care about.

Take this opportunity to experiment with new social media strategies, because #GivingTuesday is the perfect day to harness the power of contagious giving through social media.


3. Provide an educational experience

A powerful advantage of #GivingTuesday is the ability to provide an educational experience around your institution’s specific chosen cause. There is likely a community on your campus that cares deeply for the platform you select to showcase, and they will be your best advocates for teaching their own personal networks why they should take action.

Somebody who has a great experience giving will be more likely to give again in the future. Moments that provide education throughout your marketing campaign will broaden perspectives and move people to give again in the future.


4. Feature the importance of your Annual Fund

Your alumni may have misconceptions around Annual Giving and they may not realize how the Annual Fund directly impacts students, faculty, staff, and programs across campus. #GivingTuesday is an excellent opportunity to showcase how your Annual Fund is used to respond to your school’s most pressing financial needs. In addition, you may often be presented with unique opportunities that are not anticipated (and therefore not budgeted for), and your Annual Fund allows the flexibility for your institution to say “yes” to them.

Do your students know this? What about your alumni? Friends and family of the school?

If there is ever a time to showcase the amazing things your Annual Fund can support, #GivingTuesday is that time.


5. Empower your student population

At USEED, we believe in the power of Peer-to-Peer crowdfunding, not only because it brings in the highest percentage of new donors (our data shows over 50%), but because the students on your campus are empowered to showcase what they care most about with their own personal networks.

We’ve discussed before that when you encourage students to connect with their personal networks on behalf of a campaign, they feel a greater sense of engagement with their school, and are therefore more likely to give back to their alma mater once they graduate. This goes to show that it’s not just about who donates to your school during #GivingTuesday, but whether you empower your current students to pioneer new opportunities on campus.


6. Promote philanthropy as a year-round commitment

#GivingTuesday is a way to reignite your community and provide the reminder to give back to your institution year-round. We know how important philanthropy on your campus is, and you can use it to implement a campaign that will spark the interest of new donors, further steward current donors, and provide the opportunity to make giving to your school a ritual.

So join us for #GivingTuesday this year. Your participation could change the course of philanthropy on your campus!


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