fundraising, guest posts

The Birth of a National Community Giving Day: Twive and Receive

0 Comments 13 June 2012

On June 14th, over 200 nonprofits are vying to see who can fundraise the most in just 24 hours. Twive and Receive is the latest giving event that combines the power of social media and the compelling mission of local-serving nonprofits to mobilize their networks to give back to their hometown.The giving day is sponsored by Razoo.

Ahead of the event, I wanted to know more about what led to Twive and Receive, and lessons learned from past giving day events.  Ifdy Perez, the community manager for Razoo, wrote this guest post:

Building Upon Past Successes

In 2009, groups of social enthusiasts used their networks to fundraise for a local nonprofit in Twestival Local. It was one of the first instances where the online community proved that it could make a difference in its hometown by using the power of social media to raise money for a hometown nonprofit. A specific day was designated when 133 cities hosted Tweetups to fundraise for 135 nonprofits. Twestival is one of the closest precursors to Twive, proving that communities will come together to donate to one local nonprofit.

In 2009, the Minnesota Community Foundation, along with 14 other funders, sponsored Minnesota’s Give to the Max Day (GiveMN) was held. The Minnesota Community Foundation worked with 14 other funders to leverage technology and bring the community together to increase giving.  GiveMN raised $14 million its first year, and inspired other giving days in other states and communities. Last fall Razoo hosted Give to the Max Day: Greater Washington, where over 1,000 nonprofits participated in the 24-hour marathon, supported by 18,000 donors who raised over $2 million for nonprofits that directly serve the DC, Maryland, and Virginia area.

These giving days have proven that nonprofits can fundraise online, reach new donors, and diversify their resources with the chance to win prizes in addition to the money they raise.

We’ve seen a good share of community-wide fundraising events in the past few years, including the groundbreaking Twestival, America’s Giving Challenge, and Give to the Max Day: Greater Washington. We learned from these events, and on June 14th, we’re applying the best practices to Twive and Receive (pronounced like Give and Receive).

Lessons Learned: Provide Tools and Training

One thing we found out is that nonprofits are still learning how to integrate social media into their overall marketing and organizational strategy. With Give to the Max Day, we experimented with providing several in-person social media workshops to local nonprofits, and a larger workshop that was broadcast online. Most participants found these resources to be helpful to developing their fundraising strategy for Give to the Max Day.  Many post-event surveys from participants mentioned how important these boot camps were to the success of the individual organizations’ fundraising.

We have incorporated a similar training schedule for Twive participants; a four-track webinar series covering the basics of using social media as a nonprofit, and advanced strategy-development sessions based on contest best practices. We also developed a robust toolkit, with turnkey templates that busy nonprofits can “plug and play.”

Lessons Learned: Good Game Design

The gaming aspect of the giving day has proven important to its success. The tight 24-hour time frame, colorful real-time leaderboards, and the social media lifeblood contribute to the excitement of donating. People respond to the short time frame, and tend to start the beginning of a Giving Day by donating; donations continue to pour in steadily throughout the work day. During the evening, when donations are likely to lag, Razoo has sponsored hourly financial incentives to keep participation high. The nonprofit that gathered the most donations each hour leveraged prize money from Razoo ($1,000, for example). Messages such as “only one hour only to make a difference” inspired quick message-donation turnaround.

For Twive, the website was enhanced with added color, more downloadable resources, an interactive map for people to find their local-serving nonprofit, the ability for supporters to schedule donations ahead of time, and social media sharing capabilities. We want to help nonprofits harness the power of social media to disseminate their message: “Donate and spread the word to help us win on June 14th!” We continue to incorporate rewards as well: the top three nonprofits with the most dollars raised will receive a total of $30,000, donated by Razoo.

Common and Individual Goals

Over 200 nonprofits have signed up and are getting their fundraising pages ready.  They are working alongside local social media champions who know how to use social media.

Whether it’s winning one of the prizes, acquiring new donors, or simply experimenting with online fundraising for the first time, organizations have set their own expectations for participating in Twive. Not every organization is going to raise thousands of dollars, but as they follow their own strategies to reach the goals they set, nonprofits have a unique opportunity to get there with Twive.

Support Your Favorite Local Nonprofit!

The competition starts at 12AM Pacific on June 14th, and donations made up until 12AM Pacific on June 15th are counted towards the competition. The top three nonprofits to raise the most funds will win an additional share of a $30,000 prize. Find your favorite local-serving cause and support them on June 14th with a donation, and spreading the word!


 Ifdy Perez is the community manager at Razoo, an online fundraising platform that empowers individuals and nonprofits to meet their fundraising goals through online giving campaigns. She’s also editor of Inspiring Generosity, a blog that gives nonprofits helpful resources on online community management and social media tools.



Debra Askanase is an experienced digital engagement strategist, non-profit executive, and community organizer. She works with mission-driven organizations to develop digital strategies and campaigns that engage, create trust, and move stakeholders to action. Debra speaks at conferences worldwide on the intersection of technology, social media, and nonprofit organizations.

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