6 Ways to Engage Peer-to-Peer Participants and Increase Donations for Virtual Events
In-person peer-to-peer events — like runs, walks and rides — have been a fundraising staple for nonprofits for years. Today, virtual peer-to-peer fundraising events and campaigns have a critically important place in fundraising, too.
They’re essential at a time like now, when physical events aren’t possible. They can help a nonprofit to engage with constituents and make them feel part of a community, even when they can’t connect in person. In normal times, they can also be a less expensive way to raise funds year-round in between in-person events.
There are many approaches to peer-to-peer fundraising that go beyond physical events. Virtual events generally fall into two categories: virtual events/campaigns and do-it-yourself virtual events/campaigns. With virtual campaigns, an organization provides an online environment for supporters to set up their own fundraising page in support of a virtual event or campaign created by the nonprofit. DIY virtual events/campaigns allow participants to host their own virtual events or campaigns and invite their friends and family to the events to raise funds for a specific campaign for your organization.
Whether you’re moving an in-person event to a virtual event, or launching a new virtual event or campaign, getting participants to sign up to fundraise for your organization (and providing them with basic details, sample emails and suggestions about how to raise funds from their family and friends) is just the beginning. Your ability to reach your fundraising goals depends heavily on your ability to engage with your peer-to-peer event participants and keep them motivated to raise funds.
Mark founded Cathexis Partners in 2008 to help nonprofit organizations get the most from their existing technology tools, implement new technology to address gaps and find the best overall approach to using technology to support their missions. He previously served as director of IT consulting at a fundraising event production company focused on nonprofits.
Mark also serves on the editorial advisory board for NonProfit PRO, where he contributes monthly to his blog, “Nonprofit Tech Matters.”
Laura L. Higgins is a strategic consultant at Cathexis Partners. She specializes in fundraising and community-building events. She has worked with nonprofits for more than 15 years.