Virtual Fundraising Events Are Here to Stay – Here’s Why
WRITTEN BY SARAH BAKER
The past year has shown the tremendous power and opportunities virtual events present for nonprofits. As your community transitions into being able to have safe in person events, you should strongly consider continuing to offer ways for your community of supporters to contribute and participate online. Virtual offerings allow for a wider and more diverse audience by making your event accessible to those outside of your immediate geographic community, those without the means to afford to attend your in person event, as well as those physically unable to attend the event. We’ll be taking a look at three virtual event components below that are here to stay even when prescribed social distancing measures are removed and we’re able to meet with supporters again for in-person events.
3 Virtual Fundraising Event Components to Continue
1. Table Captains
One important aspect of virtual galas and luncheons that should not be left behind in 2020 are virtual table captains. Virtual table captains incorporate a peer to peer fundraising element into a typical fundraising event to help bring even more attention and donations to your cause. You can provide specific goals to your virtual table captains ranging from a specific monetary goal or a number of new donors to bring to the nonprofit. For example in a hybrid virtual and in person event, your in person table captains might be responsible for selling 8-10 tickets to fill a table, while your virtual table captains can have a goal to “host” a virtual watch party of your gala for 20 individuals.
Don’t let concern over “Zoom fatigue” stop you from broadcasting your event to your supporters online. As different parts of the country lift restrictions, some supporters may not be able to travel to your event while others might not yet feel ready to be in a large audience. Create an Event Page to house your Youtube, Vimeo or Facebook live broadcast from your in person event to ensure no one who wants to be part of your event is left out.
If you are worried about managing your in person event while hosting the event at the same time virtually, consider holding the virtual component on a different day or time. You can film your in person event to play on your event page at a later date or for virtual attendees to watch at their own leisure. Another option is to edit the video to show only the highlights of the in person event. Holding the virtual component at a later time can allow for you to choose which aspects of your event is for which attendees, so if you want an in person performance to be limited to those attending in person as a way to incentivize ticket sales, you have that option.
Another way to increase participation and revenue from your event is to provide an option for all participants to fundraise throughout the year for your cause. Create a crowdfunding page where supporters can choose to make a one time donation, or quickly set up their own page to fundraise on your behalf. Encourage them to engage with your cause and community in the way that fits their lives the best.
Curious about adding a crowdfunding or peer-to-peer fundraising page to an upcoming virtual fundraising event?
As your community and nonprofit moves towards the new normal, take with it the idea of making your event accessible to virtually anyone.
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