“Fundraising Auctioneer Shares 5 Ways To Get More People To Your Fundraiser.”
As a professional charity auctioneer who travels all over the entire country doing fundraising events every day, I have found that you all have one thing thing in common — to get more people to your fundraiser or charity auction which will help raise more money for your charity, school, or non-profit. The most effective way I have seen this done is by creating a special committee or group. Typically this is known as an “Audience Development Committee” or “Donor Development Committee”. This group has one purpose – to get more of the right people to attend your fundraiser. Notice that I didn’t just say “get more people to your fundraiser”; I said “get more of the right people” and that is a huge difference. Here are my top five ways to get more people to your fundraiser or charity auction, or just about any type of fundraiser you might have:
Set A Goal To Get More People To Your Fundraiser
First and foremost, you need to set a goal for the amount of “new donors” or “new audience” you are trying to achieve. Zig Ziglar once said, “If you aim at nothing, you will hit it every time.” You must set a goal to get more people to your fundraiser. Sure you can say “as many as possible”, but that never works. A goal must be set in order for it to be achieved.
Sponsor, Attend & Donate
- Have a time for the Audience/Donor Development Committee to link with others in your event committee. Members of your event committee will be in charge of accruing items and doing many other things that are equally important to the success of your fundraising auction or charitable event. These people are all working toward the same goal and can coordinate their efforts in some ways. One of these ways is to use the S.A.D. approach when any committee member or volunteer frequents a business. Ask that business to: Sponsor, Attend, and/or Donate. To help you remember, it will be S.A.D. if you and everyone involved with your school or charity doesn’t ask these three questions.
- For your event to be successful, you need businesses to sponsor the event, attend the event, and donate items to the auction. Businesses that get involved in your cause are more likely to attend your event, increasing your donor base and developing your potential audience. Every store, every online retailer, every restaurant and every coffee shop in which you are a paying customer has given you something else besides a bag full of items and a receipt. What they have given you is the right to be heard by a manager. Since you have earned the right to be heard by making any kind of purchase, you should ask to speak to a manager while you have the items you have purchased in hand.
- You should also have in hand a “fact sheet” about who your charity or school is and what your fundraiser is about. It should include all the necessary information for the donor (tax exempt ID number, etc.) and can have a tear-off strip on the bottom that can be filled out if the business decides to sponsor, attend, or donate to the event. In fact, I encourage you to make 2 fact sheet forms for every person involved in your fundraiser, school, or charity and have a week that everyone is strongly encouraged to ask the S.A.D. questions because it “S.A.D.” if they don’t. Besides gathering auction items and sponsors, this is a great way to spread awareness about your nonprofit and increase excitement about attending your event.
Get Media Involved In Your Fundraiser
Get the media involved! Be sure to write up a press release regarding your charity and fundraising event. Publish it everywhere possible, including free online public service announcement pages, and event and community websites that almost all newspaper, TV, and some radio stations have. Many TV stations, religious stations, and public radio channels offer free public service announcements prior to the date of a charity auction or fundraising event! Also consider a new local media personality to MC your event. Many are required to do this in their contract with the station they work with. They can be a wealth of information on getting the word out about your event as well.
Free Advertising For Your Fundraiser
Ask TV, radio, and newspapers for free advertising in exchange for marketing opportunities. You could give them recognition as a sponsor and other little goodies like being a part of your gift and sponsor bag handout to all people attending. My recommendation is to start with the top media outlets first and then work your way down.
Social Media For Your Fundraiser
Build a Fan page for your charity fundraising auction or event on Facebook. Connect it to your charity’s Twitter account and start blasting all the exciting things and people that will be attending. What items might you have in your silent or live auction? Do you have a captivating 2 minute video about your school or charity on your website or Facebook fan page that could be linked to and shared to get more people to your fundraiser? Have a “share day” asking everyone involved in your school or charity to share whatever is on the event Facebook fan page and Twitter account to their personal Twitter or Facebook page (for example every Monday) so others in the sphere of influence become aware of your school or charity’s big fundraising event. Websites and social media have taken on a world of their own and your event needs to be apart of it.
These top 5 ways to get more people to your fundraiser or charity auction should get you started. As always, if you need any additional ideas or helpful advice please don’t hesitate to send me an email or pick up the phone and call. I am just a phone call away and ready to help you with your next fundraiser.