Running your first fundraiser can be very intimidating once you jump in and make the commitment. With all the responsibility falling on your shoulders, it can be easy to get overwhelmed. There are details to keep track of to ensure you run a successful fundraiser. While some fundraisers and charity events differ from one another, there are a few best practices all should follow.
Trial Run a Soft Launch
A soft launch is a campaign within your campaign and a great way to iron out details to give you an idea of how the main event will go. Gather a small group of your most dedicated supporters to get the momentum going before launching the official fundraiser to the public. A soft launch can help raise money before the big launch to gain more traction. When running a fundraiser, it’s important to note that people are more likely to give when the campaign already has some money raise. Use the soft launch to also gain feedback from your supporters, ask if anything should be changed, ensure the message was clear, and that the big launch is ready to go.
Have a Clear and Strong Brand
When it comes to fundraising, branding is everything. Having a strong brand builds trust with your supporters and will clearly show that this fundraiser is indeed yours. When running a new fundraiser, many make the mistake of not clearly stating which nonprofit is running the new campaign. To ensure your brand is front and center, always that your brand, logo, and colors are the same as your new fundraising campaign. This essential when launching your new campaign through email, social media, or direct mail.
Have a Matching Period
Nothing encourages more donation than a matching period. A matching period is when a specific donor, sponsor, company, or organization vows to match the donations of others during a period of time or for a certain event, essentially doubling the donations made. This a great way to spark excitement within the campaign and encourage more donors to give. Having matching gifts is also a great way to encourage donors to give now rather than waiting until later. A matching period is great to launch mid-campaign.
Don’t Forget to Celebrate
Throughout the fundraiser, it’s easy to get caught up in meeting or exceeding goals and thinking of new ways to do more. However, it’s essential to celebrate your achieved milestones and success along the way. Celebrating small or large victories along the way can encourage and inspire more people to give because donors like to see when a campaign is successful. Also, remember to celebrate internally as well. Your staff members and volunteers worked hard to ensure a successful fundraiser so be sure to thank them and show how all their hard work paid off.