Fundraising events typically have a formula for revenue generation: sponsorship, live auction, silent auction, ticket sales, and maybe a raffle or 50/50 draw.
What many fundraisers don’t have is a direct ask for a vital program or defined need. Think about it. What if you devoted a small portion of the evening to ask folks to donate?
What are the possibilities?
The Alzheimer Society of Toronto held a Fund-a-Need to help them raise $5,000 to purchase 50 iPods for their music therapy program. Within 11 minutes they had not only met, but exceeded their goal; raising over $15,000.
At an annual Rainbow Railroad Freedom Party, the organization held a Fund-a-Need to raise $20,000 to help LGBTQ people seek safe haven from state enabled violence, murder or persecution. During the Fund-a-Need, two new donors to the organization came forward each pledging $5,000 gifts to the cause.
In a mere 11 minutes, both organizations raised significant funds.
So, what’s the secret to a successful Fund-a-Need? Simple: a compelling story.
No one is motivated to give based on stats and facts. No one is going to be persuaded to donate because you shared the various services and programs you offer.
Your guests are going to give because someone whose life has been changed shares their story.
That person’s experience and the impact your organization had on their life is what will create a cause connection. For the Rainbow Railroad, that story came from Toni who shared what life was like living in a country that did not accept her for who she was. For the Alzheimer’s Society, it was Jill Daum; spouse of John Mann, lead singer for Spirit of the West; who spoke of the positive effect music had for John following his diagnosis of early onset Alzheimer’s.
A great story will make all the difference. Why? Because a great story is emotional. And emotion drives action. Your guests will empathize and relate to the person telling their story.
One compelling story. 11 minutes. Cause-connect created. Fundraising goal achieved.
Sounds much easier than selling raffle tickets and securing silent auction items.
Want to learn more about how to successfully implement a Fund-a-Need into your next event? Check out my LayneWay learning opportunity on this topic here .