Mar 13, 2019

Tips to make your fundraising event special again

making non-profit events special again

I was delighted to join several thought leaders at Nonprofit Learning Lab’s event this week in Las Vegas! It really helped put the ‘sin’ in fundraiSINg. Here are a few of the tips I shared during our Make Your Event Special Again session –– they sparked fruitful conversation and even a little laughter.

1. When running a silent auction, always make sure your displays are eye level and well-lit to make them more visually appealing to potential bidders.

2. Open your silent auction early (preferably a week before the event) to allow donors to shop the items and even begin placing bids. This allows non-attendees and supporters to get in on the action early and be ready to win items even if they can’t make it to your event.

3. Innovate through reinvention by moving your event to a unique venue. There are many new venues out there and sometimes it is worth it to try something new. Take your event to a new crowd by partnering with a venue that people would say, “huh, that’s a cool idea.”

4. When going to a mobile giving solution, donors are apt and interested in giving when the mobile software is housed on a website versus an app or via text message only.

5. Whether a donor is a millennial or part of the mature generation, they all are interested in learning about the impact they are creating by supporting your organization. Share impact reports after the event to provide them with these stories and be sure to interact with them consistently to continue building that bond.

These are just a few of the nuggets that came out of our discussions with nonprofit professionals from all over the Las Vegas area. Follow us on social media to learn even more!

Looking for further tips to enhance your event?
This Masterplan is an outline of 12-months leading up to your next big event. 


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We needed a platform to make sales online and to track and display ads for our sponsors. GiveSmart was perfect. We ended up making close to $15,000 more than we had hoped for. Definite better ROI than we anticipated. The interface is easy to use and provides plenty of options to get help if needed.

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The Rotary Club of South Whidbey Island

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MicroFinancing Partners in Africa

GiveSmart is highly flexible - you can use it for [a] simple registration and check-in, to full-scale galas with complex order forms, onsite upsells, live auctions, seating management, and more.

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Hope Chest for Breast Cancer

GiveSmart is easy to use and ideal for virtual events and can be used for in-person events to manage the silent auction, seating charts, and check-in to the event. Being able to use the platform for unlimited events within the contract year is very useful and being able to add other users and volunteers for different levels of access is helpful as well.

Dawn L.

Literacy Coalition of Palm Beach County