Over the last several years, the interaction between businesses and consumers has changed drastically. With the introduction of the internet and adoption of technology, consumers are more empowered than ever. Companies such as Apple, Uber, and Amazon, have not only disrupted entire industries, but they have set a new standard for what consumers deem acceptable when it comes to buying music, booking a cab, ordering anything online, and even how donors support the causes they care about. Too often, nonprofits forget that today’s consumers are no different than today’s donors – in fact, they are the same people. The for-profit world has recognized and adjusted to this shift in consumer behavior. Nonprofit organizations need to meet the demands of today’s donors, as they too can capitalize on this highly beneficial opportunity.
Increase Event-Driven Revenue
Events can serve as a means to acquire new donors, engage with existing supporters, and get in front of the community to spread awareness and share the success they have already achieved. One of the most time consuming aspects of an event is the planning and organizing of auctions. From acquiring high quality items at no cost to ensuring these are items the attendees will be interested in, there is a high level of strategy required from start to finish. One solution to this problem is to hire an auction company. The issue here is that although they can save you significant time and energy in organizing the auction, they can also take up to fifty percent of the profit.
Run a Fund-A-Need
A more beneficial way to augment the success of your auction is to leverage this captive audience and run a Fund-A-Need. A Fund-A-Need is an appeal during your event for your attendees to help fund a specific project or need. It gives all of your guests a chance to give without committing to an auction item. Nonprofits are severely limiting their ability to raise money through live auctions in that the number of items in the auction dictates the number of donors you will receive a gift from.
Giving your supporters the opportunity to make a donation that is not tied to an auction item allows a much larger pool of people to give. It also creates an inclusive culture of giving in that an attendee can give at the level they are comfortable with. When choosing what need to fund through your Fund-A-Need, be sure you pick a cause or project that needs immediate funding with quick results. This creates a sense of urgency and encourages donors to act and act now. You will also want to make sure your project is a good fit for your audience in order to appeal to a vast majority of your event attendees.
Meet Donors High Expectations
By implementing a Fund-A-Need, you are giving your attendees a chance to donate in a highly charged and inspired giving moment. This opportunity is a great example of the importance of meeting your donor’s high expectations when it comes to how they can give to your organization. If it is not quick, simple, and convenient you will lose donors who don’t have the time or patience to deal with antiquated methods of giving. Evaluate how you can use technology to capture donations at your event. One way you can do this is by integrating a text giving solution. Chances are, your donors are already on their phones so take advantage of this and give them the ability to text in their donation. You can also increase giving momentum by using a live goal meter to show real-time results of your Fund-A-Need.
Empower Your Supporters
With the right strategy and technology in place, your organization can give every event attendee the opportunity to give, you can exceed your event’s fundraising goals, and you will significantly increase the impact and overall advancement of your organization’s mission. Remember to treat your donors like consumers. They have a choice to give to you, give to another organization, or not give at all. Capitalize on the highly emotional and inspirational environment your event has created. Empower your donors by giving them great giving experiences and they will empower you to do great things for the world.