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Give to the Max Day Social Media Tips

Jeff Achen, GiveMN Digital Strategist10/29/12


On November 15, 2012, we’re all planning to take part in the Great Minnesota Give Together—Give to the Max Day. At GiveMN, we’re all about online community building and social networking. Our goal is to raise millions of dollars for thousands of Minnesota nonprofits and schools in one day. But, we want to help you do more than just take donations; we want to help you engage donors by:

  • Using the official Give to the Max Day hashtag on Twitter - #GTMD12
  • "Mentioning" GiveMN and other organizations/individuals on Facebook
  • Putting the livestream Give-a-Thon and our video PSAs to use for your nonprofit or school
  • Participating in a “happy hour” networking event at Stir Crazy at Mall of America on Give to the Max Day
  • Create custom URLs for your GiveMN page/Website/etc. to track the effectiveness of your social media efforts

For simple instructions on how to do these things, read on...

Facebook engagement:

Use the Facebook “mention” function to connect with other nonprofits and GiveMN. Here’s how you do it:

  1. Start by visiting the GiveMN Facebook page at
  2. Click on the “like” button at the top if you’re not already a fan of our page.
  3. Now, you can return to your nonprofit’s Facebook page and begin posting.
  4. To “mention” GiveMN, simply begin typing your message. When you’re ready to mention us, type the @ symbol and Facebook will prompt you to type in the name of a friend or page like GiveMN.
  5. Once you finish the post, you’ll notice that GiveMN appears in light blue font. This means it is hyperlinked to the GiveMN Facebook page. And, since you used the @ symbol, the post appears on the GiveMN page as well.

So, you may be asking yourself, now what? By “mentioning” other organizations you’ll be fostering dialogue and helping build a diversity of messages on Facebook. GiveMN will be active in posting these types of mentions throughout Give to the Max Day (and throughout the year for that matter) to encourage, support and create awareness. This feature of Facebook will be a particularly useful one on Give to the Max Day. Let’s light up social media with our stories of impact, our tales of triumph and our messages of hope and gratitude. 

Facebook also allows you to switch back and forth between personal profile and the profile of the brand page. Use this function to engage with your fans on their own pages “AS your brand.” Like, comment or post as your brand throughout Give to the Max Day to express gratitude, encourage donors or to provide helpful information.

And, by being logged in as a brand page, administrators can easily keep up with activity on Give to the Max Day through live notifications about comments, likes, etc. You can also choose to receive these notifications via email. This is great because it’s less likely you’ll be ignoring people who are trying to engage with your nonprofit on Facebook.

We also encourage you to use your Facebook pages to post videos and photos. Use this opportunity to engage people, ask them about why they support your organization and post it on your page. Interview staff and have them tell your audience about your mission, your programs and how you change lives. Celebrate giving all day long!

Use Facebook to poll your supporters. Ask fun or even silly questions related to your particular work. Social media is all about being social and no social event is successful without fun.

Post updates on fundraising goals. We’re hoping Facebook and other social media networks will be a window for Minnesotans, helping them stay engaged in the Great Minnesota Give Together all day long.

Consider social ads on Facebook. It’s a great way to target key demographics within a specific geo-graphical area. Learn more at

The technology news site has some more great tips, check out

Check out our webinar on “Maximizing Facebook” for Give to the Max Day.

Twitter engagement:

Twitter is a great place to engage with people throughout Give to the Max Day. But, it should be about more than just tweeting your latest fundraising milestone. We encourage you to use Twitter to post fun facts about your organization. Engage others you know on Twitter to share their stories about your organization and why they give.


Please use the hashtag #GTMD12 in your Give to the Max Day tweets. Hashtags are used to aggregate all the Twitter chatter and give others a context for tweets by providing a keyword of sorts.

We also encourage you to actively search Twitter on Give to the Max Day for mention of your organization and the Give to the Max Day hashtag. Use to search your org name and have another tab open to search for #GTMD12. You’ll be able to watch a real-time stream of tweets about Give to the Max Day and catch any mentions of your organization and respond.

If you’re not already following @GiveMN, please do so before Give to the Max Day, we’ll follow you back. Also, the Minnesota Council of Nonprofits has a comprehensive list of Minnesota nonprofits organizations on Twitter at Check to see if your nonprofit is on that list, if not, contact MCN so we can have the most current list of organizations on that list and share it broadly on Give to the Max Day.

Check out our webinar on “Maximizing Twitter” for Give to the Max Day.

Promote the “Give-a-thon” Live video throughout Give to the Max Day

The will broadcast nonprofit interviews, updates from GiveMN staff, and performances throughout Give to the Max Day live from the Mall of America. The UpTake’s Give to the Max Day Livestream player will be available on the Give to the Max Day homepage and The UpTake’s Livestream player is also be available for anyone to embed on their own website:

You can register for a chance to appear in one of the 55 time slots on the Livestream before November 1. If your nonprofit is selected to participate in a live interview, use social media to promote the link to the video and the time your nonprofit representative will be interviewed. This is a great opportunity to promote your cause on Give to the Max Day when people are looking to make a difference with their dollars. Our goal with the Livestream broadcast is to energize viewers and, more importantly, engage with them about their giving.  Remember, you’ll have only 5 minutes on camera, so prepare your key talking points.

For the interview, please be prepared to discuss:

1)      You and your nonprofit

2)      Your mission and the impact you have in your community

3)      How you’ll use the donations strategically to have the best possible impact for your cause

Attend the Give to the Max Day Happy Hour at Mall of America

Celebrate to the Max with an extraordinary happy hour event at Stir Crazy at Mall of America. Tweet it up with the hashtags #GTMD12 and #celebrateGTMD. Celebrate Minnesota’s incredible day of philanthropy with others who are giving to the max! There will be great giveaways, free apps, and a free beer courtesy of the charitable beer company Finnegans, plus the opportunity to celebrate with hundreds of others who care about our community.

When: 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m., Thursday November 15th

Where: Stir Crazy at Mall of America (above Bloomingdale’s rotunda on the 3rd floor; directly above the rest of the GTMD events that day)

Admission: make a gift on GiveMN either prior to the event or at the welcome area

A special program will follow in the “formerly Bloomingdales” rotunda featuring Minnesota musicians. (Stay tuned to GiveMN’s social networks for details)

YouTube engagement:

We’ve been busy at GiveMN, partnering with,, the Mall of America and others to create a number of YouTube videos you can use to promote Give to the Max Day in your local and online communities.

The first is a public service announcement style video with R&B singers Stokley Williams (of Mint Condition) and OSO, a local artist. They’ve come together to challenge Minnesotans to Give to the Max on Nov. 15. The other two videos feature Minnesota Twins Pitcher Glen Perkins and Minnesota Viking Brian Robison asking you to give to your favorite causes. We invite you to share the links on social media or embed the videos on your website.

We have high hopes that these videos will be shared generously through Facebook and Twitter and that they promote the kind of camaraderie that is the Great Minnesota Give Together!

Track your links to evaluate your social media success

Create a FREE account to shorten and track your URLs on You can use this service to create a custom URL that is perfect for sharing via Twitter, Facebook and email. After Give to the Max Day, you can go back and see how many clicks you got on the customized URL. Not sure how many fans are clicking on your links via Twitter? Simple. Create a unique URL just for Twitter. It’s a great way to measure the effectiveness of your social media efforts.

Engage Mobile Users

With the growth of the tablet and smartphone market, nonprofits must consider how donors could be engaging with them on a mobile device. More people are viewing and posting to Facebook, email and Twitter using their mobile devices so consider sharing mobile-friendly messages using your Facebook page, Twitter and email and include the link to your GiveMN page, which is mobile-optimzed.

For more tips on maximizing mobile, check out our webinar.

For more tips on maximizing email, check out our webinar.

If you have further questions about social media outreach and Give to the Max Day, please contact Jeff Achen, GiveMN Digital Strategist at (651) 325-4216 or at

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