Fundraising events can be an extremely important part of an organization’s annual revenue and marketing strategy – but they aren’t easy to pull off. It can take a lot of time, money and resources in order to raise more money that can then provide more resources down the line. Even the most charitable organizations have trouble raising funds and getting the right people out to their events, but getting them there is only half the battle.
The most important part of any fundraising event is… raising funds. You need to find ways to ask for donations at your fundraising event without being too pushy. An approach that is too aggressive is likely to hurt long term growth for the organization, as people who are turned off by being asked for donations are likely to never donate or return for future events. What you need is a more clever way to ask for donations at your fundraising event.
Asking for fundraising donations should start long before the event takes place. Your gathering isn’t a place for a free dinner and drinks – and everyone in attendance should know that the hor dourves are only to keep people there long enough to open their wallets. It’s true! So why not be up front and include donation instructions right on the printed tickets that you use for the event?
Not only are you likely to attract more serious donors, but you’re also likely to cut costs by avoiding attendees looking only for freebies. But getting them there is only step 1. We’ve got 2 other clever ways to ask for donations at fundraising events that many organizers miss.
Making it Easier for Attendees to Donate
Fundraising organizers often avoid asking for donations directly, which is counterproductive, and often leads to confusion for those with intentions to donate. Should you donate at the beginning or end of the event? How much is needed and expected? Where do you actually donate? What forms of payment do you accept?
Provide all of this information to attendees up front with custom printed postcards or within the event agenda information included in your fundraising booklets. Hand them out at the door, so that your attendees can read through instructions and information while waiting for the rest of the guests to arrive.
Once you have a few hundred people in the ballroom, it can be difficult for people to figure out exactly where to donate. Printing a custom banner that hangs high enough where all in attendance can see it that says “Donate Here!” will help to make sure that everyone knows exactly where they can make their contribution. Many fundraisers will print a separate banner for each “Station,” and use them annually to boost donations at their events.