Getting Your Act Together for #GivingTuesday

As marketers, we all know those editorial calendars should be built out at least 90 days in advance. However … if you’ve waited this long to think about your #GivingTuesday strategy, all is not lost. Giving Tuesday is a global  generosity movement launched in 2012, at the 92nd Street Y in New York City, with not much more than 30 days’ notice either. It has grown to a movement that in 2020 generated at least $2.47 Billion in twenty-four hours in the U.S. alone. And, good news! Donors were giving at record high levels during the pandemic. 

Always held on the Tuesday after Thanksgiving, this year #GivingTuesday is November 30th. Short lead times are no problem with social media. However, with popularity comes competition, so, how can your organization stand out?

 Get specific. Instead of one post on the “day of,” choose one program or funding need your social media followers can readily identify with and create your drive around that. When you share where donation dollars go, you give your organization credibility and fuel donor buy-in and confidence.

“$25 cleans the water supply”

“$50 serves lunch for a week”

“$100 trains 3 demining volunteers”

“$250 provides a lifesaving veterinary surgery”

Skip the generic feel good, happy faces and use photos of your clients, volunteers, and projects to tell the story and increase conversion. Everyone appreciates behind-the-scenes photos which show, rather than tell, about your organization’s good works.

No need to reinvent the wheel, get #GivingTuesday graphics and toolkit here: to add your organization’s outreach.

Don’t just use the #GivingTuesday hashtag, though. Add your specific industry and donation drive to gain social momentum. For instance, #coatsforkids, #aidsawareness #cleanwater, #helpingthehomeless, #fooddrive, #sustainablefood.

Can you get your team together in a hurry?

Don’t wait til November 30th. Start announcing your fundraising needs as soon as you can with ideas like, “We’re creating an AmazonSmile page for Giving Tuesday.” Or, “Go through your closet now and start putting aside those gently used clothes for our #GivingTuesday drive.” 

More than just money. While donations are certainly necessary to any nonprofit organization, so are volunteers. Your posts can appeal to those people who like to roll their sleeves up for a good cause, and because you are not asking for money, your post will stand out from the millions of others that day. This is the perfect time to harness those individuals and families who look for opportunities to serve during the holidays. 

It’s not all over on Tuesday. Here are two ways to get more mileage out of #GivingTuesday.

You may not have time to promote #GivingTuesday in your newsletter but be sure to talk about your success in the next newsletter to come out and include all the ways to give. 

Appeal to the procrastinators out there with “morning after” posts.  “It’s Not Too Late.” “Giving Tuesday might be over, but the fight to end hunger isn’t.” 

Then sit back, appreciate the community support you’ve generated, and start thinking about next year’s marketing campaign. Plus, watch for Charleston American Marketing Association’s upcoming nonprofit-focused marketing coffee talks starting up in 2022.

Charleston AMA Launches Nonprofit Outreach Program

It started with the creation of a new Spark! award category in 2018, called The Giving Award. The Board of Directors saw that many members of our marketing community were giving generously of their time to help nonprofits and thought they deserved recognition for this valuable work. Developing a Nonprofit Outreach Program to create a virtual clearinghouse connecting nonprofits and marketers is the next logical step.

The last year has had a devastating impact on individuals and industries. Nonprofits are especially hard hit with many closing their doors in 2020.
There has been an almost 37% loss of jobs in the nonprofit sector. Two thirds of South Carolina nonprofits expect to run out of cash within the next six months. Dire times indeed. A positive pandemic outcome is that more and more people are looking for virtual volunteer opportunities, making the Nonprofit Outreach Program is a win/win.

Marketers participating in the program gain exposure to future clients through our online promotion of the work they develop for their chosen nonprofit.

We will be adding an online form to for volunteers to sign up and nonprofits to seek help in areas like logo design, email campaigns, website assistance, and SEO advice – any creative work that can be completed virtually or with safe-distancing.

Help us name the program. Come on, we’re marketers. Nonprofit Outreach Program is a little dull, don’t you think? Help us name the new program, and we’ll give you all the credit on social media.

Today, we begin community outreach, sharing the good news about our program. In the next 30 days we will roll out our online volunteer/nonprofit match-up form. The first year is dedicated to planning, development, and testing. We welcome your input and your questions. Do you want to volunteer? Do you know a worthy nonprofit? Contact Nonprofit Outreach Director, Maggie Mills, at

2019 SPARK! Awards Finalists

Will you hit the jackpot in this year’s Spark! Awards?  

The results are in, and luck had nothing to do with it! This year, 167 exceptional entries were submitted in 22 categories reflecting the creativity and skillful execution of the applicants. Do you see your entries among the finalists? The Giving Award, Marketer of the Year, and Volunteer of the Year have been chosen as well.

With so much spectacular work, choosing the winners was not easy. Entries were judged by the board of directors of the AMA Reno-Tahoe and AMA Cincinnati chapters. Tiebreaking assistance was provided by Gina Bonar, past president and vice president of Strategic Alignment at AMA Cincinnati and CAMA’s Professional Chapter representative. The top 3 entries were selected as finalists in each category. In the case of tied scores, up to 5 finalists were selected. Marketer of the Year nominations were judged by a select committee of AMA Charleston’s past chapter leaders. We thank all of our judges for their time and assistance to make the Spark! Awards a success.

Join us at the 2019 Spark! Awards on April 11th at Harborside East. You’ll see the work of the Lowcountry’s best and brightest marketers. Mix and mingle with Charleston’s creative leaders, and find out who will take home this year’s Spark! Awards. This year’s theme is Casino Royale, so come dressed to dazzle, and see what special surprises we have in store for you.

Best Branding

Frogg Toggs Product Branding – The Brandon Agency

PlanSource – Eclipse Branding – Plan Source

Just Plain Killers – Chernoff Newman

The Chattooga Club Brand Development – Rawle Murdy

Best Corporate Blog

Authority Marketing Blog: The Business Growth Gateway – Advantage Media Group | ForbesBooks

Tasting Notes – Charleston Wine & Food

Omatic Software Blog – Omatic Software

Best Book Cover

Eat Yourself Sick – Advantage Media Group | ForbesBooks

The Line by Keith Farrell – Katie Biondo

PlanSource – Book Cover – PlanSource

Best Collateral

Experience Our Story – Charleston Wine + Food

SC Ports Authority: 2018 Annual Report – Chernoff Newman

Gibbes Street Party: Paint Your Palate – Gibbes Museum of Art

PlanSource – Corporate Book – PlanSource

Best Content Marketing

Ecommerce Beauty Report – Blue Acorn

SC Department of Agriculture: Know Your Roots Video – Chernoff Newman

Gwynn’s of Mount Pleasant | Digital Advent Calendar – Momentum Marketing

Sisterhood Magazine – Chosen Women’s Conference 2018 – Seacoast Church

Best Digital Ad

Nearly Clone Yourself with BoomTown – BoomTown

SC Ports Authority Banner – Chernoff Newman

Peds “Now You See Them” – Matchstick Social

Pick Me SC, A No Kill SC Ad Campaign – The Modern Connection

Best Direct Mail

Cheers to Your New Book! – Advantage Media Group | ForbesBooks

Holiday Magic Event Promo and Parking Voucher – Banks Creative

SC Dept of Agriculture: Chicken Book – Chernoff Newman

Best e-Newsletter

Hook+Gaff New Watch Launch Email Campaign – The Brandon Agency

Bootjack Newsletter Blasts – The Modern Connection

South Carolina Aquarium: Sea Turtle Care Center Newsletters – South Carolina Aquarium

For Good Connections – TRIO Solutions

Best Event Marketing

Charleston Farmers Market – Banks Creative

2019 Charleston Wine + Food Festival – Charleston Wine + Food

Riverbanks Zoo: Gender Reveal – Chernoff Newman

Gay Bingo – Palmetto Community Care – Fisher Creative

Best Fundraising Campaign

Save the Pelicans – Banks Creative

Chef Shane Whiddon Memorial Scholarship – Holy City Hospitality

2018 Building Local Prosperity Week: Fundraising Campaign – Lowcountry Local First

Best Social Media Presence

Charleston Wine + Food Instagram – Charleston Wine + Food

SC Department of Agriculture- Peach off – Chernoff Newman

South Carolina Aquarium: Twitter – South Carolina Aquarium

Best Corporate Identity Package

Kyle Carpenter Brand Identity – Chernoff Newman

Hutson Alley – Holy City Hospitality

Best Use of Influencer Marketing

#froggtoggsprostaff – The Brandon Agency

Harry Barker Influencer Campaign – Lovingood Media

2018 Eat Local Challenge: Influencer Marketing – Lowcountry Local First

Best Illustration

Festival Napa Valley – Banks Creative

Best Logo Design

Whitesides Elementary Logo – Banks Creative

Saw Moon design – George Stevens

Cajun Mama’s Vinyl Creations – Stingray Branding LLC

Best Non-Traditional Marketing

Just Plain Killers Dispensary – Chernoff Newman

Angel Wings – Gibbes Museum of Art

Cooper the Chicken/Terry & Tim Haas – Fisher Creative

“Terminix Tasties” Partnership with Columbia Fireflies – Rawle Murdy

Best Outdoor Signage

Drayton Hall Outdoor Map – Banks Creative

SC Ports Authority Volvo Creative – Chernoff Newman

Patriots Point “History Comes Alive” Billboard – Rawle Murdy

Best Print Ad

Insiders Forum: New Year. Improved Forum. – Advantage Media Group | ForbesBooks

Experience Our Story – Charleston Food + Wine

Poultry Federation- Egg Campaign – Chernoff Newman

Best Commercial Photography

Camping Coffee Lifestyle – Andy H Photo

Drive Himalaya Worldwide 2018 Marketing Campaign – Foxworthy Studios, Inc.

Patriots Point “History Comes Alive” Photo Shoot – Rawle Murdy

Best Social Media Campaign

SC Dept of Agriculture: Fresh on the Menu – Chernoff Newman

Cooper River Bridge Run | Instagram Social – Momentum Marketing

#DiscoverJacksonNC – Rawle Murdy

Best Promotional Video

Manage the Monster –BoomTown

2019 Festival Sizzle – Charleston Wine + Food

“Where’s the Love?” –  Seacoast Church

PlanSource – Eclipse Promo Video – PlanSource

Best Website

Bourbon n’ Bubbles –  Katie Biondo

Charleston County Economic Development – Charleston County Economic Development

Duvall Catering & Events Website Revamp – The Modern Connection