7 tips to ensure your church fundraising ideas are a success
Many church fundraising ideas are a disappointment when the event is actually run. Usually the reasons for a fundraising event failing seem obvious – not enough people turn up, donors do not give as much as expected or too many people show up leading to an organizational nightmare – but the way to solve these problems at the next event can be hard to deduce. This article contains 7 ways in which you can improve the success of your fundraising events by building on previous events, and make the church fundraisers of 2012 the best yet!
Delegating to free up your time
It is important to understand that time spent looking over somebody’s shoulder is the equivalent of two people doing the same job. In order to be effective and efficient give your volunteers the knowledge and training they require to do the specific task that they are appointed to. Have faith that they will do the task correctly. This will free up your time, allowing you to make sure the event runs smoothly.
Promote the cause not the event
We are all familiar with the adverts showing a single child with a swollen stomach due to starvation he or she is suffering. This is a form of marketing and you should be using it at your church fundraising events. Appeal to emotions of the possible donors, rather than the organization itself. Instead of looking to raise money for the church, tell the donors exactly what will be done with the money that they are generously giving to your cause. Include the problems that are faced without these benefits, and how the money raised from the event will help specific individuals. It is a lot easier to give money if the donor can see exactly how people will benefit from the donation.
Motivate the volunteers by instilling the cause
It is important to make the volunteers fully aware of the benefits that will come about from the fundraising event. Do not put pressure on the volunteers; stress will create a negative atmosphere at the event and put them off volunteering in future fundraisers. Just explain exactly what will be done with the money that will be collected, and how it will benefit the church.
As above, show the volunteers exactly how the money raised will help specific individuals. Once the volunteers have adopted the cause as their own, your job will be much easier. They will actively work in order to raise the money for the cause, and will have fun doing it! Consequently they will be back time after time, helping out with future church fundraising events.
Use local media to promote the event
If your church fundraising idea has benefits for the community, you will find that it can be presented as a story that the local media would consider to be newsworthy. Send out press releases, and let the media help you inform the local community about how they can help your cause. Do not stop at the newspapers either; inform local radio and ask the owners or managers of shops and takeaways if you can leave fliers or put up a poster in their store. Send out adverts to local papers for consideration as public service announcements.
Make the event fun!
By providing an entertaining day for everyone who turns up, not only will you loosen their wallets, but you will also make the event a fun and exciting memory that will provide an incentive people to come to the next one! Hire a professional storyteller or magician. Provide food and drink for sale. Set a time to announce the results of a raffle to keep people there longer.
Keep in touch with donors
At the event collect email or home addresses of the people who attend. Make sure to let them know how much they helped raise, and remind them of how the money will benefit their local church. Sincerely thank them for their part in helping to raise this money. Keep them updated when the money has been spent and the benefits have been actualized for the cause.
Having people’s email addresses also means they can be contacted when you run future fundraising events at the church. Consequently it will be much easier to get the word out about your next church fundraiser.
Show your gratitude to your sponsors and volunteers
Volunteers are the backbone of any fundraising event. Show your appreciation to them by sending thank you cards or possibly an inexpensive present. A small show of gratitude will go a long way, and now that you have run a successful event, the next one will be much easier if the same people are willing to donate their time again.
Send any sponsors thank you cards along with certificates showing that the organization supported the church fundraising event. Put the certificates in frames and make them look good enough for display, so that the proud sponsors can hang them on the walls of their stores or offices. This will make them more likely to sponsor you again in the future, and will also provide you with free promotion.