Jan 20, 2020

When it comes to charity events…millennials vs. boomers


When it comes to charity events, there are a few notable differences among preferences and giving patterns between millennials and boomers. Whether you’re looking to deepen your understanding of your donor base, or working harder to recruit a new group as future donors, the following highlights might be of interest: 

>> The following images were obtained from this research study << 

Millennials prefer the ability to collect donations or sponsorships in advance of the event.
Millennials and boomers are both interested in silent auctions. However, the ability (or perhaps the challenge) of raising funds in advance of is more enticing to millennials. 
More on peer-to-peer fundraising here. 

Boomers believe the purpose of a signature event is to showcase what the organization has achieved. 
On the contrary, millennials want something fun and celebratory. As you plan your next event, implement the factors your donor demographic considers to be a founding purpose of a signature fundraising event. 

Millennials are more inclined to do something that’s a run, race, tournament, or other sporting competition.  
Millennials and boomers have similar interest levels in galas, parties, and silent auctions, but it’s the sporting activities that set the two generations apart. As you plan events and activities, you’ll want to take your donors’ preferences into consideration. However, make sure to consider how you can reach new demographics. If you’re looking to engage a younger generation, a tournament or a race just might be the way!

Millennials are more likely to hear about an event over a phone call or text message. 
Almost everyone, including boomers, uses a smartphone today. When you’re promoting your event, choose your communication channels based on donor preferences and how they’re most likely to respond to your organization’s marketing.


Explore our Donor Segmentation Guide to learn more about the differences between millennials and boomers.


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What our clients say

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.

Michelle M.

The Rotary Club of South Whidbey Island

Using GS has created ease in auction bookkeeping, payments, and generating post-event thank you/tax letters. While we were online during COVID, our interactions with our GiveSmart via phone, email, and zoom were seamless. A representative always got back to us within the day. I would recommend GiveSmart to anyone doing a large online event.

Julie G.

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.

Jamie F.

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