In 2016, Cyber Monday alone broke their sales record with $3.45 billion in sales. Black Friday, in comparison, clocked in at $655.8 billion with about 1k spent per shopper.
In short, if you’ve got something to sell, the long weekend after Thanksgiving is a critical time to do it. If you’re a social enterprise, though, you’re interested in more than just profits. You’re interested in giving back, too.
#GivingTuesday, created by 92Y, a cultural center in NYC, falls on the first Tuesday after Thanksgiving and uses social media and collaboration to engage in small acts of kindness through the donation of time, services, and money. The movement has grown significantly since its inception in 2012 and raised $177 million online in 2016 alone.
If you want to participate but are at a loss for how your small business can give back on #GivingTuesday, here are 7 creative examples.
7 Creative Examples to Inspire Your #GivingTuesday Campaign
01 | Partner with an artist
Burt’s Bees teamed up with Bee Informed to give beekeepers the resources they need to responsibly tend to honey bee populations. They offered a limited-edition mural print, created by Matthew Willey, where all of the profits would be donated to Bee Informed. You could also give a direct donation where $50 would get you free shipping on burtsbees.com.
And what made shopping online with Burt’s Bees even sweeter? (I know, I couldn’t help myself.) When you shopped online, 10% of all purchases went toward The Greater Good Foundation, which supports both human and honeybee health.
02 | Host a pop-up shop
Studio 189, a social enterprise focused on promoting and curating African and African-inspired content and brands, hosted a Tropical Bazaar Holiday pop up shop. A specific amount of the proceeds were donated to a new artisan center in Ghana.
So, participants got a party, gifts for others, and probably a few gifts for themselves while Studio 189 received brand recognition, made sales, and gave back to the community resulting in a win all around.
03 | Pay for tweets
The Home Depot Foundation chose our nation’s veterans as their cause and created a Twitter campaign where every tweet using the hashtag #DoingMore4Vets equalled $1 to Operation Homefront, Semper Fi Fund, Team Rubicon, and Volunteers of America.
Beyond giving back, this was an incredible way to increase Home Depot’s social media following and build customer loyalty by aligning itself with a cause.
04 | Create a special service to give away
Viv Web Solutions created a social media contest where they would help the winning nonprofit create an end-of-year or #GivingTuesday social media campaign, which included a strategy session, branding images, and a social media plan.
This is a service that keeps on giving since the nonprofit who receives the service can reuse the promotional strategies throughout the year to raise donations, too.
05 | Create a special product and donate the proceeds
Bonjour French Bakery & Cafe, based in Baltimore, created a special raspberry French macaron and donated 50% of the sales as a part of the citywide Bmore Gives More Campaign. Other restaurants, like North Avenue and Power Plant Live, also created a unique pizza and donated 20% of its proceeds.
Beyond satiating everyone’s appetites and giving back, the restaurants were also able to remind consumers that they’re more than just a place to eat. They’re businesses who want to use their resources to honor their values and do good in the community, too.
06 | Assemble & deliver custom care packages
Not only did a local TV station in Guam create a day-long Giving Marathon, but they also formed a special committee called the KUAM CareForce. Cute, right? I love it.
This CareForce put together and delivered custom care packages for cancer and dialysis patients. All of the items had been donated by their staff members.
This campaign gave everyone on the staff a chance to be involved through a donation of time and money. Plus, they positioned themselves as leaders when they enlisted other organizations in their Giving Marathon.
07 | Use Black Friday as a force for good
Instead of using Black Friday as another day to pad your bottom line, follow the footsteps of everyone’s social enterprise crush, Patagonia, and donate all of the proceeds from that day instead. In 2016 alone, they reportedly donated over two million dollars that day.
Want to get involved in something that’s already happening? Use this directory to see what’s happening near you on #GivingTuesday.