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18 Jul 2018

4 Cost-Effective Ways to Increase Donations at Your Next Event

Fundraising on a budget can often seem like a daunting task, you want to plan a successful, engaging event for your donors while keeping any additional costs as low as possible. Though it may at first seem daunting, there are actually many unique and effective ways that organizations can employ before, during and after the event to increase donations without breaking the bank. Here are 4 cost-effective ways to increase donations that we’ve collected for you.

1) Promote the event long-term through social media countdowns 

Creating excitement and buzz around the event before it even begins is key to ensuring a more engaged donor pool. A great and cost-effective way to do this is to use your social-media platforms to create countdowns towards the big event. You can use twitter, instagram, or email to remind your participants about the event, what cause it is supporting, and what prizes they can win.

You could even periodically release information about some smaller prizes leading up to the event to keep donors engaged. To further engross the participants, try creating eye-catching graphics that can help break up the monotony of written text, a great site to use is canva.com, which is a graphics website with quite a few free template options and super easy to use.  

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2) Create simple multimedia to play during the event

Multimedia such as slideshows and videos shown before you push the auction can really captivate your audience as you remind them what cause they are helping and what their donations can do. Simple video ideas, such as short, single-person testimonials about how potential donations can help their cause, can be low-cost yet highly effective. Even slideshows with pictures from previous events or showing on-ground work played during the event can help increase donations. A great example of an effective yet simple video comes from charity: water - a single person talking to a camera, a couple of over-layed pictures, and some short text at the end.

Software like Lightworks, a free and downloadable video-editing application, provides high quality and easy to operate editing software that can refine clips in a pinch, turning them into professional-looking videos you can show throughout your event.

3) Live-tweet updates throughout the event

Make use of convenient technology and capitalize on social-media to live-tweet progress on the event. Letting donors know the progress they have made relative to their goal can encourage a competitive spirit, thus increasing potential donations and pushing you closer to your goal. Live-tweeting the event can also broaden the event’s reach, as other people not in attendance can watch and engage with the event.

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4) Follow up with attendees to retain donors

It is much easier to retain donors than it is to find new ones, so in order to make sure you receive as many, if not more, donations at your next event, make sure to thank your attendees to let them know their donations were appreciated. According to the National Center for Biotechnology Information, 74% of donors do not donate again because they feel as though their donations were not appreciated. It does not have to be a massive show, just sending an email or text either thanking them or updating them on the difference their donation has made can make a massive difference in keeping those donors. Even a 10% improvement in donor retention can lead to a 200% increase in obtained donations. Long-term engagement is key.

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