Market Research Associate at Software Advice, Janna Finch, published a data report on major fundraising events that generate significant revenue for nonprofits. The report was based on survey results about the planning ease and return on investment for the right types of events. Software Advice provides reviews and recommendations for non-profit fundraising and donor management software.

Which Fundraising Event Is Best for Your Nonprofit?
IndustryView | 2015


By Linda Poon| NPR News | 6/11/15

Major fundraising events can generate significant revenue for nonprofits—but they require careful planning and higher upfront costs than non-event fundraising campaigns. To learn more, Software Advice surveyed nonprofit event planners, asking questions about the planning ease and return on investment (ROI) for eight types of special events, to help fundraisers determine the best event for their nonprofit’s size and budget. This report highlights our findings.

Key Findings:

1.  Respondents say fun runs and walks are the easiest events to plan, generating moderate to high revenue for nonprofits of all sizes.

2.  Small nonprofits are at a disadvantage compared to larger nonprofits: Respondents say the upfront investment for an event is a strain on resources.

3.  On average, a-thon events have the lowest cost per dollar raised (CPDR), and thus are suitable for all nonprofits. Concerts have the highest CPDR, requiring a larger budget

4.  CPDR, number of new donors and number of attendees are the most popular metrics to measure event success, used by 83 percent, 80 percent and 75 percent of respondents, respectively.

5.  Respondents say that software, including fundraising and event management applications, speeds up event performance analysis and improves experiences for both staff and attendees.


The Right Fundraiser Event for You

The right fundraiser event starts with a great idea. Planning the perfect event to raise the most money for your organization doesn’t have to be hard. Once you know your target audience, you can pick an easy event style with a high ROI that will guarantee success.

Summer means holidays, long weekends and endless fun outdoors. So why not take advantage of the great outdoors and organize an activity that brings your friends, family and community together to support your cause? Pair the perfect mobile fundraising technology with your event to makes donations a breeze!

Active Summer Fundraisers

Active events have the highest ROI and are super easy to plan! Crowdfunding is great for jog/walk-a-thons, dance-a-thons, swim-a-thons, group sport events and other fundraising events. Participants can register for a team after raising a certain donation amount or ask friends & family to donate per lap, point, etc.

4 out of 7 donors to a crowdfunding campaign are new (hello donor database growth) and the average crowdfunder raises $568.

Host a Summer BBQ, Lunch or Dinner

Find a host home, backyard or community room, choose a theme, and plan the menu. Potluck style is even better for distributing the responsibilities – plus, people will be excited to show off their Top Chef skills and you’ll get a variety of delicious summer food to choose from!

Mobile-friendly donation forms can double as admission ticket forms for the right fundraising event. Sell admission to the event and raffle tickets by sharing the form link over email, social media and mobile messaging. 

Easy Summer Festival Fun

Adults and kids alike enjoy battle-of-the-bands events, talent shows and carnivals. Local talent is always looking for a way to get their music heard. Coordinate with local businesses, the community and sponsors to pull of simple event that everyone is sure to love!

Credit card swipers and online donation forms make ticket sales, raffles, auctions, food and drink sales, and donations even easier to collect from attendees – all you need is a swiper and any mobile device and the right fundraising event that is perfect for your organization is ready to go.

We promise to share the most current, unique and effective fundraising inspiration and information with you on Pinterest too.

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