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Matching Gift Marketing: Social Strategies and Templates to Fuel Your Fundraising Campaigns

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Published March 21, 2024 Reading Time: 9 minutes

This blog was written in collaboration with the team at Double the Donation, an online donation matching tool built to amplify nonprofit fundraising.

Matching gift marketing tends to fall by the wayside for many nonprofit organizations for multiple reasons. Some lack the time and resources to pursue gift matches from donors, the personnel available to perform manual outreach, or an understanding of the giving programs themselves.

Because of this, billions of dollars in matching gift funds go unclaimed every year. As partners, Classy and Double the Donation strive to change that⁠⁠—because with a well-thought-out strategy, matching gift revenue offers an efficient path to achieve your online fundraising goals and fuel your meaningful work.

That’s why we’re sharing some of our top tips and strategies for driving matching donations with your social media audience. We’ll cover:

  • The value of smart social media marketing for matching gifts
  • How to promote matching gifts on social media (effectively!)
  • Selecting the right social media platforms for your cause
  • Free templates to power your matching gift marketing efforts

Jump in to take a closer look at our top-recommended tips for growing your organization’s matching gifts strategy.

The Value of Smart Social Media Marketing for Matching Gifts

Matching gifts are one of the most widely available forms of corporate philanthropy, with more than 26 million individuals working for companies that offer the programs.

However, one Double the Donation study found that only 19% of companies supply adequate matching gift information in their team handbook materials or websites. This results in a lack of awareness among eligible employees (78% of individuals have no idea if their employer matches gifts) and unsubmitted matches left on the table.

Still, we know there’s a positive correlation between matching gift knowledge and completed requests. Once donors know their eligibility, they’re highly motivated to take action on your behalf. Fortunately, marketing matching gifts on social media is a low-cost, high-return initiative to explore.

Increasingly, donors⁠—especially those in the younger demographic, like Gen Z⁠—are engaging with the organizations they support beyond the donation. Classy’s Why America Gives report revealed that 55% of donors are as or more likely to connect with their favorite causes on social media. Pursuing a matching gift after getting inspired by a social media post allows them to strengthen their bond with your nonprofit and participate in a revenue-generating corporate giving program on your behalf.

How to Promote Matching Gifts on Social Media (Effectively!)

Social media is ripe with opportunities to reach and educate supporters⁠—who likely spend much of their time on the platforms already⁠—about matching gift eligibility. Still, it’s crucial to develop a strategic marketing plan that empowers your team to grab your audience’s attention and inspire the next actions.

1. Incorporate Strong, Relevant, and Attention-Grabbing Visuals

Visuals are essential in capturing and retaining your audience’s attention in the virtual realm⁠. (Hint: This is especially critical on image- and video-based social media platforms like Instagram and TikTok, respectively.)

We recommend prioritizing match-related imagery to help illustrate the concept and impact of matching gifts. Take a look at these examples:

Examples of match-related images for your marketing campaign

No graphic design team? No problem. Use online design tools like Canva to create visually appealing graphics with the platform’s intuitive drag-and-drop functionality⁠—even without much experience.

Pro Tip: Adobe also offers a free version of its Express Premium Plan tools for registered nonprofits. Continue reading to access our premade social media templates and customize your organization’s graphics.

2. Switch Up the Types of Matching Gift Content You Share

Varying the kinds of posts your team shares on social media is essential for maximizing engagement. Not only do different content formats appeal to different segments of your audience, but they also allow you to continue captivating and inspiring your long-time supporters.

When promoting matching gifts, consider:

  • Providing an overview of how the programs work with helpful tips or a step-by-step guide
  • Spotlighting testimonial videos or quotes from previous matching gift donors
  • Telling positive impact stories that illustrate the real value matches have on your cause
  • Sharing statistics about matching gifts that effectively illustrate the opportunity
  • Highlighting examples of well-known companies that match employee-giving donations
  • Producing short, easily digestible videos that explain the benefits of matching gifts and how an individual can get involved

Additionally, utilizing various media types⁠—such as text, photos, video clips, infographics, and more⁠—diversifies your followers’ social media feed and enhances post performance.

3. Put the Social in Social Media by Encouraging User Interaction

Foster interpersonal engagement and active participation among your audience by leaning heavily into the social aspect of social media promotion.

Consider implementing these community-focused strategies in your marketing plan:

  • Ask questions and encourage your audience to share their thoughts and responses. For example, you might share a poll or true-or-false quiz inquiring whether your followers are aware of the matching gift opportunities at their workplaces.
  • Monitor your channels regularly and respond promptly to any questions or comments your audience might have regarding matching gifts. Then, provide additional information or resources to assist as needed.
  • Encourage user-generated content (UGC) by nudging donors to create or share photos, videos, or stories about their matching gift experiences. Be sure to interact with UGC to demonstrate ongoing participation and engagement.
  • Host live Q&A sessions through organized events like webinars or other livestreaming sessions on your social media channels. Invite your audience to attend for real-time information and support on participating in matching gift programs.

By implementing these strategies, your team can leverage social proof and community-building efforts to market matching gifts on social media. Consequently, you can expect increased program awareness and participation in the online donation process.

4. Develop a Detailed Matching Gift Content Calendar

As a nonprofit fundraiser or digital marketer, your content calendar is a vital tool for informing and guiding your social media strategy. The more detailed your content plan, the simpler it’ll be for your team to consistently plan and promote matching gift opportunities across your social media channels.

Take a look at the example below:

Matching gift marketing calendar for social media

This sample content calendar:

  • Categorizes upcoming posts by platform
  • Considers optimal timing for each one
  • Incorporates a range of content and media types
  • Provides an opportunity to draft and store captions and other related text

You can also explore broader research and trends to gain insight into social media best practices and recommendations. For example, studies indicate that an ideal timeline includes posting:

  • 1-2 times per day on Facebook
  • 3-5 times per week on Instagram
  • 2 times per day to Instagram Stories
  • 1-2 times per day on LinkedIn
  • 3-5 times per week on TikTok
  • 2-3 times per day on Twitter/X

With this in mind, aim for one of four fundraising-related posts to center on matching gifts. Use these averages to establish an optimal posting schedule, monitoring engagement and performance to continue refining your strategy as necessary. That might mean sharing matching gift content once a week on Facebook and every other week on LinkedIn.

5. Simplify Gift-Matching Calls to Action to Minimize Friction

An optimized social media strategy should involve clear and specific calls to action (CTAs). Social media is great for inspiring supporters and overviewing matching gift topics, but for more in-depth coverage, it’s wise to link to additional educational resources.

Pro Tip: Consider a link-in-bio tool for platforms like Instagram and TikTok that don’t allow clickable links within posts.

With matching gifts, an effective CTA will generally direct users to a donation form or donation page on your site. So as you craft your plan, aim to reduce friction in the user experience while encouraging supporters to initiate the matching gift process.

That likely means optimizing your website for matching gifts before launching your social media marketing campaign. If you haven’t already, build or refresh your dedicated matching gift page with ample information to guide donors’ matches to completion. This should include a database search tool, like Double the Donation, to supply donors with company-specific forms, guidelines, and instructions for the best results.

Matching gift search tool

Meanwhile, Classy users can activate 360MatchPro on the back end of their donation tools. You can uncover match-eligible donations directly within the giving process and follow up with personalized next steps. This matching gift software significantly boosts the number of match-eligible donors who complete their matches after you’ve inspired them to act with a social post.

Selecting the Right Social Media Platforms for Your Cause

There’s an ever-growing number of social media platforms to choose from as you develop your nonprofit’s marketing strategy. Selecting the right medium(s) is essential for reaching and engaging with your target audience. So how do you know which channels to focus your time and energy on?

We suggest taking a multiplatform approach, which allows your team to diversify its strategy. Not to mention, you can engage with multiple audience segments effectively by recycling and repurposing content from one site to the next.

Consider this breakdown of five top platforms, including their unique advantages and tailored practices for successful social marketing.

Facebook

Facebook is the world’s most-used social media site, a versatile platform that empowers organizations to reach a broad audience of donors, volunteers, and other supporters. To effectively market matching gifts on Facebook, nonprofit fundraisers should engage with their followers using a combination of text, images, videos, links, and more.

This might involve sharing impactful stories, hosting live events or Q&A sessions, and utilizing polls and other interactive elements.

Best time to post: Tuesday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

LinkedIn

LinkedIn’s business and employment-focused social media site is another leading platform for nonprofits looking to promote matching gifts online. Its professional user base and emphasis on networking and career development make it a perfect fit for connecting with donors, sharing matching gift information, encouraging followers to determine their eligibility, and even collecting employer insights.

To effectively market matching gifts on LinkedIn, nonprofits should cater their posts to a professional audience, creating informative content for individual donors, matching gift companies, potential corporate partnerships, and other organizations. Fundraisers can also utilize the platform’s Articles feature to share longer-form educational content.

Best time to post: Tuesday and Wednesday from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Instagram

Instagram is a highly visual social platform that allows nonprofits to connect with supporters, demonstrate their fundraising and mission impact, and inspire matching gift participation through compelling image-based storytelling.

To effectively market matching gifts on Instagram, nonprofits should focus on creating visually appealing, consistently branded, and engaging content that resonates with their audience. This could involve the networking site’s interactive features—such as polls, quizzes, and question widgets—to encourage followers to learn more and get involved.

Best time to post: Wednesday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

X (Formerly Twitter)

Twitter, now X, is an interactive message-sharing platform that allows nonprofits to connect with supporters, engage in real-time conversations, and amplify their message through short-form content. The site also allows nonprofits to share timely updates, explore strategic hashtag use, and encourage interpersonal engagement⁠—such as likes, shares, comments, and more—with followers.

To effectively market matching gifts on the platform, nonprofits should draft short, sweet, and to-the-point informational messages. When implemented effectively, tweets capture an audience’s attention and prompt followers to take action in fewer than 280 characters each.

Best time to post: Monday through Thursday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

TikTok

TikTok is a rapidly growing video-sharing platform that offers nonprofits a unique opportunity to connect with a primarily younger audience.

To effectively market matching gifts on TikTok, nonprofits should focus on creating authentic and relatable content through short-form videos, photos, influencer marketing, and more. Also, be sure to craft your videos with accessibility in mind⁠—such as providing closed captions for video content. You can also enhance video performance by following viral trends, incorporating popular sounds, and utilizing relevant hashtags.

Best time to post: Tuesday from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m.

Free Templates to Power Your Matching Gift Marketing Efforts

If you haven’t already, now’s the perfect time to promote matching gifts on social media. As you get started, leverage these customizable marketing templates to streamline the integration of donation match messaging into your social media campaigns.

All things considered, premade graphics and other resources allow your fundraising team to enhance efficiency and publish impactful social content without devoting much time and effort to developing it. However, remember to customize each template according to your organization’s branding, style, voice, and more to resonate best with your supporters.

Follow these steps:

  1. Create an Adobe Express account
  2. Click the links below to access the templates
  3. Select the three dots in the top-right corner of the template and select “Duplicate file”
  4. Customize each asset to reflect your brand

Social Media Template #1

Tens of thousands of businesses offer employee matching to charitable causes. Use this post to share examples of well-known participating employers and inspire donors to research their eligibility.

Marketing matching gift template

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Social Media Template #2

Donors’ lack of understanding regarding the matching gift request process is one of the leading causes of unclaimed matches. Leverage this multipage carousel post to walk supporters through each phase of a typical submission process.

Marketing matching gift template

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Social Media Template #3

When donors understand the scope of the matching gift opportunity, they’ll likely look into their employers’ programming. Empower your audience with social proof using this true-or-false knowledge check demonstrating the extent of participating companies and match-eligible employees.

Marketing matching gift template

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Social Media Template #4

Drive home the value of matching gift engagement for your donors by focusing on amplified impact. Use this social media post to share additional statistics and insights while reminding your audience that all additional funds will benefit your cause.

Marketing matching gift template

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Promote Matching Gifts on Social Media

Matching gifts are an essential component of a well-rounded fundraising strategy. Fortunately, social media marketing can go a long way in increasing program awareness among donors and encouraging them to get involved⁠. Ultimately, this leads to more completed matches and additional funding for your mission.

Plus, marketing matching gifts on your social media pages might be easier than you think. Equip your team with the knowledge and resources necessary to empower supporters and amplify your impact today.

Copy Editor: Ayanna Julien

social media displayed on a cell phone screen

The Nonprofit’s Social Media Content Planner

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