The value of events to Charities

Fundraisers, listen up. Have you ever thought about what events you are planning, for whom, and why? Do you know how best to meet your audiences’ needs through events? Because without that it will be tricky to know how to plan and deliver events that deliver the greatest impact and with the most effective use of resource.

Events are generally known for being resource-intensive and delivering lower ROIs than other fundraising and they can get a bad rep because of it. But they are also highly effective tools for bringing existing or prospective supporters closer to the work we do, giving them a chance for deeper engagement and giving them rewarding experiences of the charity.

Historically, you may have assessed the success of an event by funds raised on the day. Whilst this is naturally a key measure, it is overlooking the considerable often more important non-financial benefits and the impact on longer-term relationships that also need to be tracked and recognised.

So how do you get to a point where you can confidently say you have a portfolio of events, designed using solid insight, delivering the greatest impact for target audiences, with the most effective use of resource?

You start off with an audit to give yourselves a single overview of all events being planned, within and outside of fundraising. There may well be more than you realise and there may be crossover and obvious gaps. Insight gathered through surveys, interviews and feedback forms should start to identify key themes and expectations from supporters and staff. Once you have gathered all that insight it should be possible to identify the scope within your organisation to develop new more meaningful event activity that will help you increase profile, build relationships, drive action and grow income. You can then set about defining your vision and proposing how that will work in practice. No doubt you will need to get buy in from your senior leadership team. There will be other considerations to take into account too including staffing, the systems you have in place and how you track and measure success.

Implementing this kind of change is hard. Just finding time outside of the demands of your day job is tricky enough. I can help you navigate the process. I’ve worked with lots of charities to help them futureproof their events programme and radically improve their results. I offer a free 30 minute discovery call which will allow you to find out more so comment below or message me if that is of interest.

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