How Give Local 757! surpassed their $1 Million Milestone with GiveGab
How Give Local 757! Surpassed Their $1 Million Milestone With GiveGab
“We almost doubled in dollars raised during our first year joining GiveGab, which is even more remarkable if you consider we had been doing this for six years on other platforms without experiencing this level of growth.” - Tammy Flynn, Director of Philanthropy at the Peninsula Community Foundation
After surveying 100 of their local nonprofits in 2013, Tammy Flynn, Director of Philanthropy at the Peninsula Community Foundation, discovered that most were not prepared to enter into the era of digital fundraising. However, as the world was beginning to connect more and more online, Tammy understood there was great potential for their nonprofits to leverage technology to engage with supporters and donors in new and meaningful ways.
“We saw a gap in the capacity level of our nonprofits and that they needed the Foundation’s support to ensure they were not behind the curve of what was becoming a best practice.”
As a young community foundation, Tammy and her team had limited resources to facilitate their nonprofit’s transitions to online fundraising. She recognized that to better support her nonprofits, the foundation also needed to grow its own exposure.
In 2013, Giving Days were a newly formed practice with only a handful happening across the country. Tammy observed the success these Giving Days were having and knew that both the nonprofits and the Foundation would benefit tremendously with one of their own.
“We could do three things all at once - create more exposure for the Community Foundation’s mission, build the capacity of nonprofits, and generate new philanthropy in the region. A Giving Day covered all these things even with limited resources!”
With that, Give Local 757! was launched! The Peninsula Community Foundation hosted its first Giving Day in 2014. Named after the community it supports, Give Local 757! has been connecting donors with nonprofits serving in Coastal Virginia for the past eight years.
Give Local 757! was highly successful in engaging the local community in digital philanthropy. However, its year-over-year growth was becoming stagnant. Tammy and her team struggled to effectively manage the daily tasks of running their Giving Day while still finding time to generate and implement new strategies.
The platform previously used by the foundation did not provide any user support to the participating organizations and donors of their Giving Day. When a nonprofit had difficulties navigating the site or a donor needed assistance making a gift, Tammy was the one providing the support. Because of this, she spent the majority of her time answering endless emails and calls, hardly leaving time for much else. While she cared deeply about the success of each nonprofit, she didn’t have the capacity to provide thoughtful and individualized support.
The Peninsula Community Foundation was also responsible for creating the resources and trainings that her nonprofits relied on. This was extremely time-consuming for Tammy, and she oftentimes felt overwhelmed. She had limited time to develop these resources and had to use her best judgment to prioritize the level of support she was able to give the nonprofits. Most of the participating organizations were brand new to online fundraising and desperately needed simple and easy-to-understand instructions for how to launch successful campaigns. Tammy reflected on how she had begun searching outside of their platform for resources and guides that would help their nonprofits, even discovering GiveGab’s vast resource library.
“I needed help; I was the only one doing this, and I didn’t have the expertise so I was looking online and all the resources I found were on GiveGab!”
As a small foundation new to running a Giving Day, Tammy and her team had limited resources and expertise on how to continue growing their event. Their previous platform did not offer any additional guidance that went beyond the use of the technology. With Giving Days growing in popularity, more best practices and guidelines were being developed. Tammy needed to work with an industry leader that was willing to pass along support in all aspects of their Giving Day.
“The focus was only on the product and not the people and with an event that is all about humanity, we really needed that piece.”
With her limited time wrapped up in providing support and resources for nonprofits, Tammy did not have the capacity or expertise to focus on the larger Giving Day strategy. She knew that in order to grow Give Local 757! she needed to shift her focus and prioritize efforts around marketing and creating community partnerships. Beyond her new strategic goals, she also knew that it was time to find a technology partner that would support her every step of the way.
The Peninsula Community Foundation hosted their first Give Local 757! with GiveGab in the spring of 2020. After researching the platform and attending our exclusive Giving Day Leaders Forum in July 2019, Tammy was confident that GiveGab would assist her in achieving the substantial Giving Day growth she was working towards.
“I had a demo of the platform and saw the backend, and I never went back! There was so much support, comradery, and humanity that GiveGab brought to the table.”
As one of GiveGab’s key values, “Customer Love,” plays a critical role in the level of support we provide our Giving Day partners and site users. We are inspired by the work of our partners and excited to help them amplify the impact of their Giving Days.
When the Peninsula Community Foundation joined GiveGab they were paired up with Laryssa, their dedicated Project Manager. Laryssa was there to offer the guidance, best practices, and general support that Tammy was lacking from her previous platform provider. Laryssa and Tammy met weekly to discuss goals, track their progress, and determine any next steps as they moved along the Giving Day planning process.
“Laryssa was so patient and understanding as I learned how to use the GiveGab platform. As I was becoming more strategic and organized in my Giving Day planning, she was there to support me through everything.”
In addition to the expertise Tammy gained from working with her Project Manager, she was also given access to GiveGab’s Giving Day Leaders Network. Tammy could now tap into the knowledge of hundreds of other fundraising professionals doing similar things for their communities and schools. She could learn from, ask questions, and form meaningful connections with Giving Day hosts in ways she never was never able to before.
Tammy also no longer needed to answer support questions from nonprofits and donors; GiveGab takes ownership of that with GG Chat! Through our automated help center and educational database, we are able to provide unparalleled support to anyone fundraising or donating on your Giving Day.
Our talented and friendly team of Customer Support Champions are available to answer questions in real-time or through our Support Center with step-by-step articles and videos which guide users through the Giving Day platform and highlight best practices.
In 2020, GG Chat managed 334 support requests from organizations participating in Give Local 757! And as they became more familiar with the platform in 2021, that number decreased to 235. This was an incredible value add for Tammy who would have been responsible for answering those 569 questions prior to GiveGab’s support.
“The customer support, they just roll, it’s wonderful how they involve me when they need to, but I no longer need to be involved in every single one of those support conversations.”
Our Customer Success team has also created an extensive library of resources, trainings, and toolkits made for participating organizations that encompass best practices collected from hundreds of Giving Days. Our Project Management team also hosts live webinars on behalf of the GIving Day partner to offer their nonprofits best practices and instructions on how to make the most of their profiles. It was no longer the responsibility of Tammy to develop, maintain, and distribute these tools.
“GiveGab was able to provide this really simplistic, completely not overwhelming toolkit, and it just worked. I think there were nonprofits that were not able to operate with what they were previously given, but GiveGab was able to empower nonprofits with limited resources to follow a simple plan.”
Through the support and resources that GiveGab provides, Tammy finally found herself with time to develop creative and engaging ways to grow the impact of Give Local 757!
Tammy was proud to share, “We almost doubled in dollars raised during our first year joining GiveGab, which is even more remarkable if you consider we had been doing this for six years on other platforms without experiencing this level of growth.”
The Peninsula Community Foundation was astonished by the monumental growth that Give Local 757! experienced after joining GiveGab. In 2020, the Giving Day surpassed the $1 Million milestone with participating nonprofits collectively receiving over $1.6 Million in donations. During their most recent Give Local 757!, the community of Coastal Virginia reached another impressive milestone, over 10,000 donors gave during the annual event bringing in over $1.8 Million.
Tammy attributes reaching these milestones to the level of support GiveGab was able to provide the Foundation and their nonprofits. Since she was no longer the one providing technical support, compiling resources, and organizing trainings, she was able to form partnerships within her community that would allow Give Local 757! to be amplified.
One partnership in particular that Tammy was able to grow was with the local news station, Channel 13. Working with Channel 13 amplified the reach that Give Local 757! has had in the past by having segments that highlight both the Giving Day and the efforts of the participating nonprofits. Every day for two weeks leading up to Give Local 757!, they would interview organizations, and on the day of, their whole broadcast was turned to the Giving Day.
“It really looked like a modern-day telethon, and that is what created the most excitement! They gave updates all day long and organizations were there telling their stories and sharing the impact their donors could have!”
In addition to the Give Local 757! broadcast, Tammy was able to devote time to curate a special livestream for the day. She worked with Chris Strub, livestreaming expert, who assisted her in leading interviews, relaying updates, and announcing prizes. This generated more engagement around the Giving Day because, “For the first time, in one place, all the nonprofits got to turn to this event made just for them! Donors were able to hear not just about the nonprofits but how the Giving Day helps them.”
Tammy also felt better equipped to empower her participating nonprofits to explore more advanced strategies to grow their individual campaigns such as Peer-to-Peer (P2P) fundraising. On average, a P2P fundraiser brings in four new donors. Engaging in P2P fundraising was a proven way to grow an organization’s donor base and their biggest supporters were able to solicit funds on their behalf. To highlight how easy implementing this strategy could be, the Peninsula Community Foundation led by example. By using the tools and resources provided to them by GiveGab, the Foundation set up fundraisers on behalf of their board members, bringing in over $35,000.
Their efforts in educating nonprofits on the importance of P2P fundraising led to incredible growth for the Giving Day. Seventy organizations leveraged P2P fundraising bringing in a total of $596,547 - 32% of all donations made during Give Local 757! Additionally, their use of P2P fundraising brought in more donors than ever before, with 52% of donors supporting the Giving Day for the first time. Tammy also explained that the winner of their “Most Donors” prize was able to do so because of the increased number of new donors they brought in through P2P fundraising.
As Tammy and her team prepare for their upcoming Giving Day in the spring of 2022, they look forward to continuing to take Give Local 757! to new heights. She is on a mission to expand her livestream, continue building upon their relationship with Channel 13, and find ways to make their Giving Day go viral!
“We live in a market where we should have a multi-million dollar day - we need to get creative in the way that we can introduce more people to Give Local 757!”
She also wants to take some time to reflect on the message that Charlie Mulligan, GiveGab’s Co-Founder, shared at the 2021 Giving Day Leaders Forum - that stewardship was a necessary component to maintaining and growing your Giving Day.
When asked if she had any final advice to share with community foundations considering running their own Giving Day, Tammy eagerly shared:
“I would 1000% percent encourage moving to GiveGab, no matter what system or platform you are currently on, you would not regret it one bit! The efforts to switch pays back in fold with all the extra work that will no longer be in your hands. GiveGab is a one-stop-shop to take your Giving Day to the next level.”
Fundraising Results for 2021
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