First, Black Friday. Then, Cyber Monday. And now, Giving Tuesday? The brainchild of the 92nd Street Y, a nonprofit community center in New York, Giving Tuesday is about getting people as excited about donating to charities as they might be about buying a big-screen TV at bargain prices. Organizers are hoping to start a movement at a time when charitable giving has been relatively flat and as nonprofits struggle to find new donors. According to NPR, retailers are also getting in on the action — JC Penney is just one major brand that's planned fundraisers and service projects for today. Nonprofits everywhere are hoping for a record turnout, proving that the holiday season really is more about giving than receiving.
Bonus: On HBR.org, Morra Aarons-Mele explains how marketers built grassroots support for Giving Tuesday using the social web.
While we’re all busy spending, Sam Ro at The Atlantic reports on a set of interesting graphs (based on census data compiled by the economic forecasting firm HS Dent) that show how our spending habits change as we get older. A few highlights: Men spend less on underwear as they get older, while spending on robes spikes near the end of life. As we age, we use a lot less plastic cutlery, while alcohol consumption stays pretty steady. Personal care services for men (like haircuts) peak around the age of 40, as does spending on cigarettes and camping equipment. Most mattress purchases happen around age 30 and age 60. 55-year olds are spending the most on cars, coats, and clothing (sorry, Forever 21). And it seems that as we get older, more and more of us are willing to pay someone else to mow the lawn.
“The year 2012 can be viewed as social advertising’s ‘coming of age,'” says Jed Williams of BIA/Kelsey, advisor to companies in the local media industry. Spending on social media advertising in 2012 is $4.6 billion — which BIA/Kelsey projects to double to a whopping $9.2 billion in 2016. Not surprisingly, mobile advertising emerges as a major growth area, projected to increase threefold in the next few years, from $500 million this year to $1.5 billion in 2016. — by Deborah Milstein