There are many ways to do fundraising, with one of the most popular being a fundraising event. Events are awesome opportunities for an organization to make money, but they come with their own host of time and expense requirements. In order to have a successful event, it is crucial to have a careful plan from start to finish. To make your event as successful as possible, here are eight major components to incorporate into your plan:
A successful event is built on a strong foundation – and that foundation is the purpose. You might have a lot of great ideas, but that won’t translate into a great event without a clear purpose. With a free event consultation meeting with us at Minuteman Press of Redmond, we can help you brainstorm ideas and sort your thoughts. Are you strictly focused on fundraising, or are you more interested in gaining publicity? Maybe you’re looking to reach out to a new network. Many events have more than one goal, and that’s ok! The important thing is that those goals are clearly defined, so that the rest of your planning can be centered around it. When you start your planning with us from the very beginning, we help build a clear vision that translates to the rest of your event.
Every event plan should have a budget that includes a listing of all the expenses required to host the event, as well as a little extra room for unforeseen costs. This can include, but is not limited to, staff, invitations, signage and other print, space rental, catering, entertainment, transportation, security, and utilities. It can feel overwhelming to face at first, but the good news is that we can help you start cutting costs immediately. With years of experience, we know how to get the most out of your money, while still maintaining the quality you want. For example, when sending out invitations, we know what size of envelopes and which mailing process will be the most cost efficient. Plus, you’ll save even more money by using one local source for all of your print and marketing!
To send out invitations, you need to know who you want to come to your event. Who is the target audience? It can be a general event where anyone or everyone is welcome, or perhaps it’s geared toward a specific group of people. At Minuteman Press of Redmond, we can help you figure out those demographics. If you don’t know who your target audience is, we can help you determine the group and build a mailing list. If you already have a list, we can get it cleaned up and save your money by preventing wasted mailings. Regardless of what point you’re at, we can make sure you get the word out to the right people.
To ensure your event runs as smoothly as possible, the set-up needs to be planned out in advance, so that everything is ready when it’s time to rock and roll. Where will it be? Will food be served? How are you recognizing your sponsors? Does the audience need tickets or forms? There can be a lot of details to manage, so let us make your job easier and take some off of your list. Need large format signage printed on foam-core of your sponsors? And delivered to your event venue? We can do that! We can also make table tents, promotional giveaways, auction booklets and forms, and even more to help you the day of the event.
Think of your event as a new product that needs to be aggressively marketed to raise awareness and get customers. If people are going to come and support your organization, you need to convince them that your event is worth their time and money. A key component of this is the graphic design. We can help you create visually stunning graphics that set the stage for your event, so people are interested in coming and supporting your organization.Furthermore, we can make sure that everything is themed consistently – from printed invitations to reminder emails and Facebook events. With the proper marketing, you can fill your event with the people you want.
Once you market your event, you need to have a plan for the usage and sale of tickets. Are you selling tickets to get into the event, or selling raffle tickets at the event? Is there a set price, or are there different contribution levels? How are the tickets going to be distributed? These are all important questions you need to consider depending on the style of your event. We can help you help you determine what will be best for your event, and make the tickets accordingly. For example, if you want to send out further mailing, you can use the contact information from raffle tickets to improve your mailing list for future events.
A full blown run-through may not be necessary for your event, but you want everyone to have a clear idea of their responsibilities and how the event will flow. This is a great opportunity to work out all the rough edges in your plans, and we’re happy to help with that. We’re experienced when it comes to running events – been there, done that, got the t-shirt. We’ve worked with dozens of local non-profits to make sure their events are a success, and we can help make sure that yours is too!
The best way to ensure continued support from contributors and help from volunteers or staff is to show your appreciation. Follow up your event with a postcard or thank you card – we’ll make sure it’s branded to match your event! We can have the design ready to go months in advance, but include updated information, such as the amount raised. You just call us with the total, we’ll apply it to the design, and then print and mail the cards in less than 24 hours!