Fundraising events can be stressful for the organizing non-profit—and everyone involved. The combination of taking care of the event’s logistics requirements as well as trying to keep a constant eye on your target results, can be worrisome. Such events typically involve many moving parts. There is also the natural preoccupation with the financial goals and how to achieve them. As the event date approaches, the anxiety levels can indeed rise.
Organizing a fundraising event need not be all stress. You can organize a successful fundraiser with less tension…and try to have some fun along the way. Here are a few tips on how to inject some fun in your next fundraising event:
1. Planning for a fundraiser need not be all work and no fun. Think of ways to introduce into the process some simple fun activities for your staff and volunteers along the way. This can be in the form of fun teambuilding activities; engaging games for everyone involved; or picnics, BBQs and other social gatherings. These can foster closer working relationship and bond your teams together, resulting in enhanced productivity and improved results.
2. Introduce some enticements for your teams—staff and volunteers. A little friendly competition goes a long way to keep your teams engaged and committed. Introduce fun [and inexpensive] awards for best performance in the categories you set up. A little break from steady work at the end of the day—or week—can pay off in improved morale and a healthier sense of commitment.
3. Volunteers can be invaluable in your outreach efforts—whether that is for driving auction item solicitation or for selling tickets to your fundraising gala. Put in place ways of identifying everyone’s strengths and motivations; and try to tap into that potentially-vast resource to advance your goals for the event. Committed and engaged volunteers can be a vast pool of multifaceted resources. Keep them happy!
4. Fundraising galas need not be all formal and serious. While there is a place for formal events—with speakers and celebrities—a fundraising event can also incorporate some fun elements. Making your guests have fun at your fundraiser can often translate into more giving—and longer-term commitment to the cause.
5. Many non-profits think of fundraising events as the typical gala dinner with entertainment and speakers. Try nontraditional activities during [or as part of] your fundraising event. How about a fundraising event in conjunction with a regatta at the local yacht club? Or fundraising in a speakeasy venue with all the fun that that entails—top hats, feather boas and all. If you have a baseball celebrity, why not try to hold your fundraiser in a ballpark—where your sports celebrity can pitch a few balls to add excitement to your event?
6. Instead of a tuxedo-attired group of guests crowded into a hotel ballroom, how about making the event more family centric—with appropriate [fun] activities for all members of the family? Children and grandchildren bring joy to parents and grandparents making them more giving participants.
7. Don’t underestimate the value of various social media platforms as a means of energizing (or reenergizing) your stakeholders—be it through serious posts or fun facts about your cause. Pictures of your previous fun-filled fundraiser can be powerful tools to draw interested donors to your cause.
8. Hire a good event planning company with a proverbial roller deck of fun ideas to spice up your fundraiser—with the clear goal of improving results while taking some load off your back. Choosing the right event planning company can spell success in so many ways—from smooth-running logistics, to theming and high-energy fun components, and to proactive social media strategies to drive attendees to your fundraiser or donors to your cause.
Let professionals at Your Great Eventspice up your next Fundraiser with clever and fun ideas. We have been serving our non-profit clients for over 20 years.