How to Organize a Successful Fundraising Event Step by Step

budget, calculator

Written by Tim Grable

December 10, 2018

Organize a Successful Fundraising Event can be very challenging. There are so many details to take into account such as building a team, the finances, the logistics, the advertising.

This article will take you through a step by step guide on how to organize a fundraiser which will be nothing short of remarkable.

1. Come up with a Plan

One of the first things you will have to do is to set the objective of your event. It is basically what you are hoping to achieve through your fundraiser.

Ask this question – what purpose is this event going to serve? Will it help raise awareness? Or is it meant to promote a product? What happens if you need to turn your program into an online fundraiser?

How to Organize a Successful Fundraising Event Step by Step

Once you have established the goal, you can go on and research the market to identify the audience. Here, you will have to paint the profile of the people who are likely to attend the event and, furthermore, of those who are likely to donate.

When you have a general idea of how the event will pan out and what kind of people are likely to attend it, then you can proceed to set the deadline.

2. Build a Team

To Organize a Successful Fundraising Event is quite a hassle, and you will need the help of others to pull it off. So, you’ll need to set up a designated fundraising team. If you are having a hard time finding people, you can always seek out volunteers.

Once you have managed to assemble a roster of personnel, you will have to split up the tasks between everyone. Asses your team members’ skills and delegate the tasks depending on what each of them can help with.

3. Have a Clear Plan for Delegating Tasks

One person can’t do it all.  It’s crucial to determine who will be responsible for the different components of your event early on in the planning stage.

Depending on the size and type of your fundraiser, you may only need a single committee or in the case of a large fundraising event, multiple task forces consisting of staff and volunteers.

To keep things organized, consider dividing your to-do list for the event into five main categories: 

  • sponsorship solicitation/activating existing donors
  • marketing/promotions
  • ticket sales and event registration
  • setting up the venue and post-event cleanup
  • fundraiser follow-up (reaching out to attendees after the event).

Once you have this sorted out, it’s time to assign team members to be responsible for tasks that fall within those categories.

Having a clear plan for delegating tasks will help you with task management and knowing who’s in charge of every aspect of your event. That translates into fewer event hiccups and an ability to fix unexpected issues faster.

4. Think About the Finances

At this point, you should establish how your event is going to raise the intended amount of money.

It’s a case of thinking which kind of fundraising tactic you are going to employ – will it be done through donations, will it be done by charging general fees or will it be done by selling tickets?

budget, calculator

Another step which has to do with finances and which is instrumental for your fundraising event is all about managing the budget and the costs.

This is a world of its own, but basically, you will have to write down a list of all the expenses and to see if your budget matches the vision of the event.

5. Consider the Logistics

In this stage of organizing your fundraiser, you will have to establish the time and date when the event will take place. Choosing the right day of the week is also important because it can influence the number of people who can attend.

Ideally, you would want to set the starting day of the event during the weekends. So the best days to pick are Friday and Saturday since people won’t be at work.

fundraiser, stage, people

Also, another important aspect to consider is the location. You will have to find a good location which will be able to house the number of attendants you are projecting for the event.

Ways to Create Buzz for Your Next Fundraising Event

Charity dynamics can be quite demanding. There’s a continuous motion between carrying out current activities and raising the money for them. So, non-profit people also need to become experts in producing a fundraising event.

The first stage of such an event planning process is to come up with some fantastic ideas to promote and launch it. This phase sets out the entire trend of the event. So, you need to make sure it rocks.

Here are five ideas to use for hyping people up for you to Organize a Successful Fundraising Event.

1. Create a Story

5 Ways to Create Buzz for Your Next Fundraising Event

Great stories are unforgettable. Most of all, they trigger emotional and personal engagement in the long run. How can we make a story memorable?

  • First, shape it in ways that give people a sense of belonging. They need to feel part of a story or becoming part of the solution.
  • Secondly, make it shareable. Give the story various shapes and sizes that are easy to share online. It’s amazing how much people enjoy sharing ideas that they identify with!
  • Finally, come up with a story-related hashtag. Such “keywords” can become your strongest promoters if done right. You can use them for media sharing, or as copy prints for traditional advertising. They can turn into a highly promoted idea that goes beyond that particular event you’re planning.

2. Make Social Media Your Most Powerful Weapon

Have you taken a look at people around you, lately? They tend to be glued to a smartphone screen all the time. This virtual environment may be your best chance to reach your audience. Make sure to maximize it.

  • Share your story. The hashtag and reshaped versions of your “tale” can do miracles when shared on different social media platforms. Test and try several channels and see which one hits best.
  • Set up a contest online. Contests are excellent tools to induce a sense of anticipation and eagerness as the event gets closer.
  • Use photos. Let your audience anticipate an amazing experience by sharing photos from previous events. Or, set up a fun photo corner for people to take pictures during the event. They will be incredible traffic generators during and after the event.

3. Use Conventional Advertising in Unconventional Ways

Who says you need to spread flyers everywhere to get people interested in your fundraising event? Think of your audience’s profile, values, and interests. Then, get creative and focused when promoting your event.

  • Direct mail with a card or invitation having a suggestive photo and piece of your story. A child-focused charity can ask some teens to do some face-paint and deliver those invitations themselves.
  • Stationery imprinted with your event hashtag or idea. Hand them out in relevant contexts, depending on your target audience. A non-profit fighting for clean water in developing countries can give out cups with dirty water imprints during some public event.
  • Newspaper releases can be more than dull event announcements. Why not adding a bit humor to the message? You can also include a photo from a previous event or a testimonial.

4. Announce a Famous and Popular Entertainer for Your Fundraising Event.

A well-known entertainer will surely excite your audience’s interest in attending the fundraising event. Even if nothing else does. Just make sure to announce it out loud! Adjust your entertaining ideas to your audience:

  • Live music. You may hire some new celebrities from “America’s got talent”, like Evie Clair or Cami Bradley.
  • Fun or inspirational speeches. Prepare to add a note of fun or inspiration with some popular speakers or comedians. It could be a great way of sharing your story or give some motivational boost to your attendees.
  • Unconventional art. You can invite a live event painter, like Heidi Schwartz or a sand storyteller, like Joe Castillo. This type of art tends to be attractive for being new and insightful. It takes people through a mysterious process, leading to a mind-blowing revelation. This experience tends to inspire people long after it ends.

5. Follow Up and Get Ready For The Following Fundraising Event

Successful charities are those that are many steps ahead with planning. So, once your ceremony is over, start buzzing online to keep your audience engaged until the next one.

  • Share photos from the event.
  • Start conversations online about the ceremony. By tagging attendees, their friends and connections will get to hear about it as well.

All the above ideas are starting points to Organize a Successful Nonprofit Event. Start planning while keeping an open mind regarding new approaches.

Are you willing to use the celebrity trigger? Allow us to assist you in choosing the personality that best suits your event. 

Just contact us and let us share our list of brilliant entertainers. 

The Extra Factor When You Organize a Successful Fundraising Event

By carefully going over each of these steps, you will be able to set up your event. However, something is missing in its composition. To guarantee its success, your event needs a “wow” factor!

Thankfully, the solution is not at all complicated.

Going for entertainment is the sure-fire way to attract an audience and to compel people to hear more about your initiative. For your event, you can hire a speaker, a comedian, a band or a magician.

If you want to have performers of the highest standards at your event, you can call 615 283 0039 for more information, and we can help you.

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