Organizing fundraising events can put much pressure on your shoulders. As a fundraising event planner, you need to have backup plans for everything, and on top of that, you must not forget to keep a smile on your face.
There are a lot of different aspects which go into building a successful charity function from the ground up.
From creating a budget to choosing the best location, all the pieces of the puzzle need to come together perfectly for the event to reach its full potential.
Also, it all comes down to you – the one in charge of planning the event.
Forget about stress for a moment. In this article, we want to give you some tips and tricks which will help any event planner organize upcoming festivities like a pro.
Whether you are a beginner fundraising event planner or you have been doing this for years, the tips we have included in this article should come in handy. So keep on reading.
Do Your Research First and Put Together a Strategy
A goal without a plan is just a wish. That is why you need a detailed strategic plan which will serve as your guide throughout the planning process.
So what exactly should an actual fundraiser blueprint contain?
- Primary goals and objectives. It is important you get specific with this. The clearer your aims are, the easier it will be for you to come up with tactics to achieve them.
- Assets. Write down the organization’s available resources you can use to achieve the goals. Everything from volunteers and sponsors to video projectors should be included in this category.
- A proposed budget. Figuring out your assets should help you estimate your expenses more accurately.
- The event’s target audience. Having a detailed overview of your audience will help you tailor your message accordingly. Remember if you plan an event which targets everyone, there’s a high risk it will end up appealing to no one.
Once you have a structured strategic plan, everything else will start to fall into place.
- The audience. Once you have determined who’s your audience for your next event, all the other aspects will be easier to establish. Starting to organize a fundraising event without picturing your audience is like running blindfolded.
- The limits. Fundraising event planners are no superheroes, so don’t beat yourself up. Be realistic and write down somewhere the things you will not be able to do. That way, you can avoid hiccups in the organization process.
When it comes to the budget, fundraising event planners may find that they need to get creative to pay for everything an event requires.
Here are our tips:
- Sponsors. They are treasured because you can also build a long-term relationship with them. Reach out to local businesses or even big business who are already known for participating in fundraising events.
- Expenses plan. Laying out a budget plan is essential, even though there are going to be only estimates. Write down the amount you think you are going to get from sponsors and also how much the event could potentially raise.
Don’t Wait Until the Event to Raise the First Dollar
One of the most common errors fundraising event planners makes they rely solely on money raised during the event to cover for all the event costs.
Attributing the event’s success entirely on ticket sales and auction bidding is pretty risky.
A better alternative is to try and cover all the expenses before the event through sponsorships. Reaching out to small businesses and corporations in your community is always a good idea.
Getting People to Attend
The success of any fundraising event is determined by how many people attended and how much money you raised.
After you have got everything in place, how are you going to make people interested in your event? We are glad you asked.
- Crowdfunding your event. By setting up a crowdfunding campaign, you will be able to raise awareness and attract other people into becoming sponsors. This way, you could also quickly reach a minimum donation amount.
- Attracting your audience. For some people, the purpose of the fundraiser is not enough, so you will have to figure out how to make it even more attractive. For example, you can bring an international speaker, an entertainer or a performer.
- Engaging your audience. You’ve attracted the audience you want – but how do you hold their attention? Hiring an entertainer can be a great way to get your audience engaged. If you’re looking for something more hands-on for your fundraising event, you could also consider hosting a color run or organizing walk-a-thon to raise money (and get the community moving).
Combine Attraction with Purpose
As a fundraising event planner, you might be tempted to think the organization’s cause is enough to make people want to attend your fundraiser.
Sure, an openly stated purpose is likely to serve as a great incentive. However, when you include an activity which can further educate people about your cause or entertain them, you increase the chances of supporters attending.
The main question is: What kind of performance will make the intended audience get excited?
Using Social Media
You cannot go wrong if you use social media to promote your fundraising event. Social media networks make it incredibly easy for other people to spread the word about your event. The great thing is that you can go as creative as you want here.
You can create YouTube videos, host live Q&As on Facebook, get involved in Twitter chats and other social media groups.
The Dream Team
We know – you would like to do it all yourself, but the truth is you will not be able to. That is why you should always put together a team to help you with the event. Delegating responsibilities for each team member is also paramount.
For example, you should have someone in charge of logistics. Then, someone who will greet the guests, or a person who will be in touch with the entertainer or speaker.
Don’t Overlook the Element of Surprise
As a fundraising event planner, you know that selling tickets to an event is no walk in the park. Donors are busy people, and your invitation is probably one of the many they receive every year.
The key is to make your event stand out from the bunch, by offering something different. In other words, surprise your guests.
Moreover, one best way to surprise your guests in a positive manner is through entertainment.
Here are two wonderful entertainment suggestions which will make your event memorable:
- A Digital Magician: Simon Pierro is the world’s first iPad magician to use specially developed apps to perform one-of-a-kind illusions in an interactive manner.
- A Live Event Painter: Heidi Schwartz creates memorable interpretive paintings sure to leave your audience in awe.
What It Looks Like to Be a Successful Fundraising Event Planner
Event planners have a broad range of skills and assets which help them organize amazing fundraising events. We are passionate about organizing events in general. However, in this article, we are going to talk about the skill set of an event planner.
We know there are so many of you out there who are in charge of putting together charity events. We hope this article will be an inspiration for you.
What It Looks Like to Be a Successful Fundraising Event Planner
Enthusiasm and passion
The charity sector needs people who are enthusiastic and passionate about the cause they are fighting for. Passion is what determines fundraising event planners to do amazing work.
If you have been organizing events for a while, then you know how stressful they can sometimes be. That is why passion and enthusiasm are so important because it drives people to accomplish their goals. Also, by being enthusiastic individuals, planners will be able to spread all around them positive energy.
A fundraising event planner knows you can never be too prepared. They will always have a backup plan to their backup plan and will know how to manage unexpected situations.
However, having a backup plan is not the only thing they are good at. They also have checklists to make sure every single important aspect of the fundraising event is covered.
As an event planner, you have to talk to a lot of vendors, sponsors, partners or speakers. It is so important to communicate your needs clearly and to be able to coordinate with the members who will help you with the event.
Being an excellent communicator is strongly related to having people skills. You cannot have one without the other.
Entertainment as the secret ingredient
The most successful fundraising event planners always have an ace up their sleeve. Usually, it is what will make the guests engaged with the fundraising event and will make it an inevitable success.
Seeing people having fun and not being bored is what successful planners aim for. If the guests are happy, then their goals are met.
For a fundraiser event planner, there’s so much more than just a checklist and donations. It is about having a vision.
This concept applies to all the fundraising events they will be organizing are it includes elements such as:
- Event theme
- Sponsors and the list can go on and on.
Having a vision means to deliver expectations and to serve a greater purpose which is the fruit of a long-term strategy.
You can never be too careful about details, even if you are organizing small fundraising events. In fact, that is where it can matter the most.
A successful fundraising event planner knows how the small pieces fit together and what kind of details can make a difference in the overall experience.
The ability to put yourself in someone else’s shoes is a must trait to have in fundraising. Why? Because it facilitates relationships by listening. By listening, fundraising planners are learning so much.
On top of that, it is more important to figure out what’s left unsaid, then what’s coming out of someone’s mouth. Most of the time, it is the body language which talks and not us.
Fundraising Event Planner, We have Got Your Back!
Successful fundraising events are planned to the smallest details, no matter their size. We hope that these tips and tricks will help you in this process.
We can help you exceed your fundraising goals by providing you with high-quality entertainment choices.
Whether it is a speaker or a comedian, you cannot have a fundraising event without a professional entertainer.
Your Fundraising Event Starts with Us
Moreover, we are not the only ones saying that. Our amazing clients can confirm this for us. We know only by practicing and getting as much experience as possible you will be able to grow as an event planner.
We will give you a tip and suggest a list of speakers and entertainers which you can consider for your next event. Don’t hesitate to contact us if you have any questions about booking them. Call at 615-283-0039 and let’s discuss your event.