By Heidi Gregory-Mina.
Even though your organization might have the purest of missions, it still takes money to keep it running.
And such an important function shouldn't be left to guesswork or shot-in-the-dark approaches. With the right fundraising strategy, you can get a lot more bucks for your efforts.
Here's five tips that can help you get more out of your fundraising events.
1. Take full advantage of social media.
It takes money to make money. But one way to make sure that you raise more than you spend is to use all of the relevant free or low-cost methods to publicize and manage your event, such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
2. Be creative and innovative.
More people attend events that are fun and out-of-the- ordinary.
- Make time to connect with donors during an upcoming event and ask for their feedback and ideas about event themes to help plan future events.
- Make sure you have a follow-up plan to connect with donors after the event.
- Always send thank-you notes to your donors and event volunteers—and the more creative you get with those, the more they’ll stand out.
3. Clearly define your goals.
Are you organizing your event to raise awareness, or to raise money? Once you've defined your goals, you can choose the correct time of year to hold the event.
For example, If your goal is to raise money, don’t plan a fundraiser during the holiday season. People already feel financially strapped and will not be as willing to donate or donate as much.
4. Turn a non-event into a fundraising pitch.
Instead of holding a big event, email past donors and friends of your organization and tell them that you plan to funnel all event-related efforts and resources into programs and services this year.
This cost savings means additional revenue for your organization’s programs, and you can request donations in lieu of attendance. Most donors are receptive to this approach.
5. Don't give up!
There are going to be times when donations are down, and it seems like no one is interested. Every nonprofit goes through these cycles.
Use this time to brainstorm innovate approaches to fundraising, learn about new technologies that could help you reach your goals, personally reach out to networks, and meet with donors and supporters face to face.