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EVENT PLANNING

Here are a few ideas to get you on your way.

1. Define your cause

Getting clear on why you’re raising money and who you’re raising it for will help you create an effective promotional strategy and plan. All other decisions cascade from this “mission statement.” Defining your cause on paper is the first step to setting in motion a clear plan of action.  Remember, The Tom Clarke Foundation has a wide objectives to help charities within the Cancer, Hospice or Crohn’s & Colitis sectors so you could support one main charity or you might decide to support two worthy causes at the same event?

2. Set a fundraising goal

How much money are you hoping to raise? Consider different avenues like ticket sales, donations, live auctions, silent auctions, and crowdfunding, but remember that donations are not the only way to support a cause. But remember, it’s important to keep all potential goals in mind.

3. Create your charity event’s budget

You need to raise funds above and beyond the amount you’re going to spend. A budget will help keep your costs in perspective and get more for your money. Make sure it includes every detail, from venue to catering and parking.

Always leave a little room in your budget for the unpredictable. It’s better to exceed your
goals than have them eaten into by unforeseen expenses.

4. Pinpoint your target audience

Focus in on the audience you want to attract, this will help you plan a better fundraiser and market it appropriately. Does your charity appeal to a particular generation or interest? Is it to support a local charity or a national charity? Is it going to be an invite-only, black-tie affair, or will you reach out to the general public?

By defining your audience, you can determine the best ways to reach potential attendees and donors. From there, your marketing and outreach plan will follow.

5. Find a venue

The event that you are considering may require a venue.  Choose a venue, possibly something non-traditional that will infuse your event with flair. Shop around. Some venues might be willing to discount or even donate the space to be associated with a good cause. Being flexible with your date can help secure a venue at a lower cost. Make sure to ask the right questions when vetting a venue so you know what’s included in the price.

Step 6: Establish a theme for your charity event

People are excited to support a cause, but they also want to have a great time. Millennials, in particular, are “the experiences generation”. They love spending money creating memories, and the theme of your event will help tease what awaits.  Remember: “Raise money” is not a theme. “Singles charity night” is. To inspire donors, come up with a fun, unique idea they’ll be excited to attend (and recap on their social media feeds). Include an attraction such as a special guest, musical act, or pop-up shop that will get the attention of a broader audience
and give your attendees something to talk about. 
Consider both your cause and your audience. What would your target audience find entertaining that would be on point with your cause? If you’re not feeling creative, read 100 Unique Fundraising Ideas that Actually Work 

7. Market your charity event aggressively

All events need marketing, but some need more marketing than others. For a charity event or fundraiser, spreading the word is crucial, and it directly affects your ability to meet and exceed your goals. Traditional fundraising models include mailed invitations, phone banks, and direct mail. But now, the focus is digital. Create a strategy for which digital channels you’ll employ: email marketing, content marketing, advertising, and more.

Social media is one of your biggest allies here. And specifically, Twitter, Facebook & Instagram  have been shown to be a powerful platform for promoting fundraisers.

8. Decide how you’ll accept donations

You’ll need at least one way to gather donations. But for the best (meaning most lucrative) results, don’t limit yourself to just one donation method. Start with online providers like Just Giving.

9. Lean on your greater community

Most people like attending live events just to have something to share on social media. Give them something to share by providing rich online content. Utilise video clips and images and ensure that your posts are shareable, so your attendees can easily pass them along to their followers.

10. Automate your charity event technology

Most fundraising and charity events don’t have enormous budgets (see step 4). Any way you can make your operations or marketing more efficient will lower costs. Today, it’s easy to automate many tasks that humans do repetitively. What ever you are considering doing, we would like to help and support you, so please get in contact with us.

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