Why You Should Ditch Your Next Fundraising Event
If you focus all your energy on one major event each year, you can raise bigger sponsorships because the single event has the visibility and pizazz. Why would you want to spread yourself too thin, wear yourself out, exhaust your volunteers — all for such a small return? Got me!
Don't get me wrong — events are fine. They can be a very important part of a full-scale fundraising program. Just don't overemphasize them. Try more sophisticated approaches, such as one-on-one asks. Or try a carefully planned series of letters, postcards and e-mails designed into a campaign.
Five benefits of only staging one major event a year
- Your volunteers can go all out in spreading the word and generating attendance, because they are only focusing on one a year. Have only one event a year, and make it fabulous!
- You have the lead time you need to identify, cultivate and ask sponsors. And that's where the money is.
- You'll have greater attendance and attention from your supporters.
- You'll be able to raise more money overall because the staff now has time to focus on other, more productive and more efficient fundraising strategies.
- You'll have a happier and more productive staff.
Yes! My motto is 'When in doubt, throw a party!'
What I mean is that you need to turn everything you do into a party — and have some fun. You'll be more successful if you do. I don't mean that you should stage event after event. Just be smart about where you focus your time and energy.
Gail Perry is a fundraising consultant, owner of Gail Perry Associates and author of "Fired-Up Fundraising: Turn Board Passion into Action." Reach her at GP@GailPerry.com. This article first appeared on Gail's Fired-Up Fundraising website.