While Giving Tuesday has become a household name, regional giving days have enjoyed considerable success. Colorado Gives Day, Give NOLA Day, and North Texas Giving Day all raised over $30 million last year. Giving days have thrived in part by using social media to grab the public’s attention in a short period and converting this attention into donations.

But it’s difficult for researchers to determine how an organization’s social media presence affects a giving day’s success. Better-established organizations tend to have more followers and attract more attention, and their social media presence could be the result—rather than the cause—of a strong network.

In 2016 and early 2017, Twitter users sent around a million tweets in association with giving days. Using a 1 percent sample of all tweets sent in the past year, I found and analyzed about 10,000 tweets referencing various giving days to better understand how social media shapes their success.

Of the 10,000 tweets in the sample, Giving Tuesday accounted for 9,000 tweets.

Giving days that used Twitter to get the word out early—up to six months before their giving day—tended to perform better than giving day campaigns that began tweeting (or only tweeted sparsely until) closer to their date.

Read the full article on regional giving days by Brice McKeever at Urban Institute