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Find the Perfect Virtual Event for your Nonprofit

WRITTEN BY LEAH LIBOLT

COVID-19 has changed business as usual for so many of us, and, for many in non-profits this includes changes to your fundraising and outreach events. With social distancing in place, that intimate cocktail party with your Executive Director is no longer possible and you may be wracking your brain to figure out what types of virtual events would work for your nonprofit.

Our chart makes that easy for you. It compares the level of technical difficulty and the cost of 8 popular types of virtual events to help you decide which event is right for you.

8 Popular Virtual Fundraising Event Ideas

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Cost and difficulty of holding different types of virtual fundraising events.

  Behind the Scenes tour

Grab your smartphone and a selfie stick (or a socially distanced colleague) and take your supporters on a tour of your facilities or show them something they may otherwise not have access to.  After your tour is done, upload it to the free streaming or social media platform of your choice.

Theta Chi Fraternity gave a virtual tour of their headquarters.

Daily Video Series

Create a series of short selfie videos with your smartphone that focus on one central theme that is important to your nonprofit. You can even outsource some of the videos to others on your team or in your community.  Every day, at the same time, upload one of the videos to the free social media or streaming platform of your choice with fanfare.

Issaquah Schools Foundation held a multi series video series for students during COVID-19 lockdown.

  Class

Use your favorite meeting or webinar software to hold a class or instructional session on a topic that is relevant to your mission.

Great River School provides a bedtime reading message to students as part of their virtual fundraiser.

  Talent Competition

Use Peer-to-Peer fundraising software, like MobileCause, to host a talent competition. Contestants can use their personal fundraising pages to post videos and images of their talent to share with their friends and family and compete for donations. The contestant that raises the most, wins!

Great River School held a talent show as part of their virtual fundraising event

Walk, Run, or Athletic Competition

Participants can “race” where they want and when they want—all while raising money for your organization using their Peer-to-Peer fundraising pages. Send them their race shirts in the mail and ask them to post their “race” pictures on social media with a special hashtag. You can embed your social media wall on your MobileCause Peer-to-Peer page to capture the feeling of camaraderie among the racers—even though they are far apart.

Run for Recovery 5K went virtual in 2020 with a peer-to-peer fundraisig page.

  Roundtable or Panel Discussion

Even though your team is spread out, you can still invite your supporters to a roundtable or panel discussion that features multiple speakers who are at home in different locations. Just stream your event from your favorite meeting or webinar software to your preferred streaming or social media platform. And, if you are streaming to YouTube, Vimeo, or Facebook, you can put your link on your MobileCause Event page to make donating to your cause, while watching your event, easier than ever.

American Conservatory Theatre had multiple components to their virtual fundraising event.

  Virtual Event with multiple elements

If you don’t want to skip your 2020 gala completely, consider having a multi-dimensional virtual event, instead. If you want to host a virtual event with high production value that includes multiple speakers, videos, cut-aways, overlays and graphics, it takes a little technical know-how. You will need someone who feels comfortable with digital video to create and stream your event through Vimeo Live, YouTube Live or Facebook Live. But, once you have that Live link set-up, you can stream your Event on MobileCause’s event page.

Mill Village Farms culinary concert had multiple components

  Hybrid Event

Maybe COVID-related restrictions have loosened in your area so you want to host your event in person while creating an opportunity to join the program from home for those that can’t or won’t venture out to group events. With a great AV team, you can create an event that allows people at home and in-person to enjoy. Sell scannable tickets to the event through MobileCause that will allow your volunteers at the door to check people in without touching anything. Then, stream the program to those at home through MobileCause’s event page. Even if someone makes a gift from home, those at the event in-person will get to see that gift in lights on the event thermometer.

Walk 4 Water is a hybrid, virtual and in-person fundraising event.

If you need more expert insight into virtual fundraising events, you can get in touch with one
of our Digital Fundraising Experts by requesting a consultation here:

We hope this article helped you decide on a virtual fundraising event suitable for the needs and capacity of your organization. For even more expert insight checkout our infographic, Virtual Fundraising Event & Campaign Ideas, to discover 10 ways you can take your event or campaign online.

Leah Libolt
Senior Digital Fundraising Strategist
MobileCause

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Our goal at MobileCause is to help nonprofit organizations create and manage successful digital fundraising campaigns, raise more money and retain donors longer. Request a free demo with one of our fundraising experts to learn, step by step, how MobileCause can simply help set up your campaigns while transforming your results.

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RELATED RESOURCES

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Download these free resources to help you maximize your fundraising efforts,
or take a peek at our library of free resources.

Click Here to Download Your Calendars! Campaign Calendars for Virtual Fundraising Events
Click here to download our eBook: Successful Virtual Fundraising Events: Inspiring Stories from Nonprofits
 Download This Virtual Fundraising Events Checklist & Planner

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