Human Rights Watch: 2020 Giving Tuesday Campaign


Human Rights Watch launched their Giving Tuesday fundraising campaign on November 26, 2020. There were several factors that could affect the potential success of this campaign, including the economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic and a delayed start to the campaign due to election coverage.

Our objective was to launch a successful Giving Tuesday fundraising campaign that promoted their matching gift challenge, with the goal to exceed last year’s revenue for the campaign, and demonstrate the work Human Rights Watch has been doing in the United States in relation to the pandemic.


The Giving Tuesday campaign incorporated a robust email and digital advertising schedule, as well as custom landing pages and integrated lightboxes for Human Rights Watch’s home page. Faircom New York developed copy and design for all materials.

Throughout the campaign we invited donors and prospective donors to help Human Rights Watch reach their Giving Tuesday goal of $100,000 with a gift, which would be matched 3X or 5X depending on donor status. We launched the match on 11/26 which ran through 12/2 (the day of Giving Tuesday) and offered an extension on the matching gift offer through 12/6.

There were 12 emails sent over the course of the campaign. For each email, and donation landing page, we utilized powerful images of Human Rights Watch beneficiaries to increase emotional impact. In the messaging we empathized that 2020 was an intense year, unlike any we’ve previously seen, marked by a heated presidential election, a pandemic, massive unemployment, and widespread protests against entrenched racial inequity. We highlighted mission-based content and various issues coming off of the heels of the US Presidential Election, including voting rights, poverty, inequality and discrimination, immigration and structural racism.

Solicitation emails were signed by Ken Roth, Executive Director of Human Rights Watch, to give emails a more personal feel.

We ran social media ads on Facebook/Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn that promoted the match. We also created organic social media assets, including animated Instagram stories.

Throughout the email and ad campaign, we used customized ask strings and personalization based on the donor or prospect’s established giving level within Human Rights Watch.

We tested a new design for the landing pages, and incorporated a percentage progress bar so donors and prospective donors could track progress in real-time.

The lightbox was designed to be integrated with the match campaign and was updated to create urgency towards the end of the campaign and during the match extension.


Compared to Human Rights Watch’s 2019 Giving Tuesday campaign, we increased the total revenue by 80% and surpassed the $100,000 goal we set for this campaign — a 270% ROI for Human Rights Watch.

The email campaign earned an average of 18% open-rate (1% above industry average as per M+R Benchmarks), and a .46% click-through-rate.

The advertising campaign which ran on Facebook/Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn earned 665,224 impressions and 1,194 clicks (.38% click-through-rate). Facebook/Instagram ads earned a 13% conversion rate and Twitter ads earned a 1.3% conversion rate.

Notably, the campaign was named one of Mashable’s Top 8 Giving Tuesday Campaigns of 2020.​

"Faircom NY helped us fully integrate our marketing, including planned giving. Faircom has strengthened the core of our messaging. Their copywriters, designers and developers are second to none. Faircom is incredibly strategic, data-driven, and committed to helping us articulate our mission to a broad audience of supporters. They work tirelessly to help us acquire and cultivate new constituents. They have enhanced our marketing – turning our program into one that is a smartly segmented, data-driven, and robust."
Brian Peterson
Director, Legacy and Gift Planning, Human Rights Watch

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