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Turning Event Participants into Event Fundraisers


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Are you struggling to turn your event participants into fundraisers? Slides from a webinar featuring Event 360’s Jeff Shuck and Blackbaud’s Amy Braiterman answering your questions about converting more of your event participants into fundraisers. Ever wonder which participants are more likely to fundraise than others, what strategies work for zero dollar participants vs. existing fundraisers or how you can best utilize incentives?

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Turning Event Participants into Event Fundraisers

  1. 1. FIVE QUESTIONS: TURNING EVENT PARTICIPANTS INTO FUNDRAISERS February 22, 2010 Amy Braiterman, Principal Strategy Consultant, Blackbaud Jeff Shuck, President/CEO, Event 360, Inc.02/25/2011 1
  2. 2. EVENT FUNDRAISING WITH BLACKBAUD More than $1.3 billion raised 37,000 events and counting 17M participants & 31M donors Average participant sends 27 emails 1 in 4 FAF emails convert FAF emails have a 90 percent greater open rate Average online gift size: $60 American Heart Association, Alzheimer’s Association, Arthritis Foundation, Autism Speaks, LIVESTRONG, Best Buddies International, Rodman Ride and National Down Syndrome Society02/25/2011 2
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  4. 4. Why should I worry about turning event participants into fundraisers?02/25/2011 4
  5. 5. EVENT VALUE CHAIN Mission Revenue Gifts Donors Participants Event02/25/2011 5
  6. 6. WHY TURN EVENT PARTICIPANTS INTO FUNDRAISERS? • You need money. Just showing up at the event does not help you achieve your mission. - Fundraising allows you to carry out your programming. • You are not a party planner. In the typical event without a fundraising minimum, about 70% of participants do not fundraise. - You end up covering costs and not raising any money for your mission. • You are a fundraiser. The event is created as the reason for the ASK. - Make sure you tell your participants why fundraising is important.02/25/2011 6
  7. 7. Where do I start? When in the lifecycle of the event?02/25/2011 7
  8. 8. WHERE DO I START? • With an ASK. You can insert an ask anywhere in your lifecycle. • Start at the beginning. From the moment a participant registers, emphasize the importance of fundraising: - Implement a registration fee. - Suggest a minimum fundraising amount. - Encourage self-donation. • Maintain the momentum. Foster a fundraising culture throughout the event lifecycle: - Recognize individual’s fundraising progress. - Encourage participants to enlist others for support.02/25/2011 8
  9. 9. Who should I focus on? How do I find them?02/25/2011 9
  10. 10. PARTICIPANT DRIVERS Affinity to an activity • I like to walk. Affinity to a third party group • I’m supporting my school/church/office as a team. Affinity to participants or individuals • I like to spend time with my friends. Affinity to a cause • I want to help find a cure. Affinity to an organization • I believe in this Foundation’s work.02/25/2011 10
  11. 11. WHO SHOULD I FOCUS ON? WHERE ARE THEY? • Cast a narrow net. A successful fundraising event cannot be everything to everyone. • Be specific. Start with a specific target market to yield the best results. - People who are directly affected by your cause. - People who are passionate about your event’s activity. • Find out why. What drives your current constituents to support your cause? - Build a case for participation and fundraising based upon what motivates them.02/25/2011 11
  12. 12. Are some participants more likely to fundraise than others?02/25/2011 12
  13. 13. WHICH PARTICIPANTS ARE MORE LIKELY TO FUNDRAISE? • Connected to cause. Individuals who have been personally touched by your cause and mission. • Team members. People who join with friends and family on a team have more support and more motivation to fundraise. • Alumni. Return participants know that they can do it and are willing to continue being an advocate for you. • If a participant falls into multiple categories, they are likely to fundraise even more. - Acknowledge these key fundraising drivers and speak to them in your event communications.02/25/2011 13
  14. 14. WHICH PARTICIPANTS ARE MORE LIKELY TO FUNDRAISE? Additional Indicators • Fundraising goal • Personalize their webpage • Sending Friends Asking Friends emails • Received donations • Make a personal contribution • Not a team of one • Have they reached out to you?02/25/2011 14
  15. 15. Are there specific strategies that work to turn zero balance participants into fundraisers?02/25/2011 15
  16. 16. HOW DO YOU TURN A ZERO-BALANCE PARTICIPANT INTO A FUNDRAISER? • Ask, ask, ask. Make a strong ask to all of your participants. Repeat the ask of your zero-balance participants. • Be direct. Tell them that participation is not enough and that you need fundraising to carry out your mission and programming. • Use incentives carefully. Use time-based incentives with an expiration date to get them to take action faster. • It isn’t easy to move this group. It’s often more effective to focus efforts on your actively fundraising participants.02/25/2011 16
  17. 17. Are there specific strategies that work to get existing fundraisers to raise more?02/25/2011 17
  18. 18. HOW DO I GET FUNDRAISERS TO RAISE MORE? • Emphasize the cause. This is the main reason that they are fundraising. Illustrate your impact through meaningful stories. • Be straightforward. Tell them to do more, because you need more for your mission. - Encourage repeat participants to increase their goals from last year. • Tell them about everyone else. Letting people know how much the “average” participant fundraises shows them what levels are attainable. • Say thank you. Acknowledge their specific efforts. Recognition is a powerful motivator.02/25/2011 18
  19. 19. How can I best use incentives?02/25/2011 19
  20. 20. HOW CAN I BEST USE INCENTIVES? • Recognition, not reward. Focus on using incentives as a thank you mechanism. A prize is nice, but people want to see you achieve your mission. • Give them a deadline. A time-based incentive can motivate fundraising spikes. - “Raise $100 by this Friday and be eligible for…”02/25/2011 20
  21. 21. How do I measure the impact I’m making?02/25/2011 21
  22. 22. HOW DO I MEASURE IMPACT? • Totals. More than just overall dollars and participants. - Total number of donors, gifts • Individual performance. Look at the amount raised “per” participant, team, etc. • Median, not average. The middle gives you a more representative snapshot of what your participants are doing. - Median amount raised, gift size • Growth. Compare your numbers to last year and the year prior. Use the data to make informed decisions on next year.02/25/2011 22
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  24. 24. NEED MORE INFORMATION? EVENT 360 BLACKBAUD BLOGS www.blackbaud.com02/25/2011 24