We have all been to those charity events before. You know the ones that have you checking your watch every few minutes and planning your exit strategy. Let’s face it, most of us only attend these functions because we feel obligated to do so. Well, your next charity event does not have to be like this. Your event can be the one that stands out, creating a different, inviting and entertaining atmosphere for your guests. By following some basic steps in your planning process, your event will resonate in the minds of your guests, leaving them excited for the next one!
Know your facts before starting anything. If you are creating a fundraiser, you must handle public relations and recruit volunteers. You need to be able to cite important facts about the cause and nonprofit to get people interested and promote your fundraiser. If people see you are knowledgeable about the issue at hand, they will be more likely to participate or volunteer.
Set an overall goal for your event. Establish whether you want to raise money (and if so how much) or awareness, or perhaps even items (wish-list drives). Fundraisers need to have an end goal so that people know why they are making a contribution. Setting a defined goal for what you want to attain with your fundraiser will also help you develop a practical plan.
Choose the type of event you want for your fundraiser. Just about any event or activity can be turned into a fundraiser, including dinners, auctions, happy hours, carnival, 5K or marathons, wine tastings, performances, etc. Consider your audience when choosing an event; for example, a carnival or 5K would be a perfect fundraiser for a nonprofit that helps children. This would be a family-friendly event.
Itemize your budget. Count alcohol, space rental, entertainment, food and decorations. An itemized budget will keep you on track and prevent you from overspending. Don’t forget promotional tools such as invitations, fliers and ads.
Put together a committee. If the benefiting charity is able to provide volunteers, this will help with manpower. If you need to find your own volunteers, this is when knowing your facts comes in handy. Talk to people about your cause; engage them and get them interested, then ask if they would be interested in volunteering. Ask your own family and friends to help.
Reserve a venue. Your venue choice should reflect the wanted atmosphere for the fundraiser, as well as the mission and message of the benefiting charity. With fundraisers, creativity is often more appreciated than cost; you don’t necessarily need to book an expensive venue to raise money. Try thinking outside the box, like hosting your fundraiser outside if the benefiting chartiy is environmental.
- Pay attention to detail. It is easy to forget basics such as tables, chairs, decorations when you’re running around planning a fundraiser. Make a list of all of the essential items that need to be taken care of and delegate tasks to your volunteers. Check items off your list as they are completed.
By following some of these basic guidelines during your planning, you will be sure to have a successful and well-attended event. A memorable event builds good will and strengthens your brand awareness overall.
Don’t forget to utilize the UCT Home Office when hosting your next fundraiser or event! The Creative Consultants will help assist you with their expertise in graphic design, social media, email marketing, promotional items, website development, event concepts, fundraising, on-site assistance, media relations and more!
If you’re ready to start planning your next event, the UCT Creative Consultants are ready to help! Contact firstname.lastname@example.org.