Austin’s first “giving day” is in less than a week, and word on the street is … we have no idea how it’s going to go.

I’ve spoken to lots of nonprofit people around town and it seems one’s outlook on Amplify Austin (March 4-5) depends on your role:

Nonprofit marketing teams: Our campaign is great and we’re going to win! (Competition is built in to the project.)

Nonprofit development professionals: I don’t know where this fits in with our other asks.

Nonprofit leaders: I guess we’ll see.

Nonprofit donors/supporters: This is a great opportunity for nonprofits to raise money!

Regular person on the street: Have I heard about that?

In a past life* I got to meet the director of a similar day of giving in Colorado called Colorado Gives. She had lots of insights into what makes a day of giving successful, and one of the things she said has stuck with me. I remember her talking about two keys to a successful giving day (there may have been more, but these are the ones I remember):

1. The nonprofits have to drive it with their donors

2. The website and online giving experience has to be flawless

A $1 million goal seems like a lot, but not if you compare it to giving days around the country. Colorado Gives raised $15.7 to 1,246 charities last year, and that same year a giving day in North Texas raised $14.4 million for 900 charities.

What do you think, Austin? Can we make this happen?


*As communications director at Austin Community Foundation, which is the fiscal sponsor of I Live Here, I Give Here, which is the producer of Amplify Austin.

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