With COVID, all events are risky. This reality is a tough one for charities relying on event-based income to keep programs afloat. Though taking a fundraiser online isn’t quite the same experience, it’s a solid alternative to canceling everything. To engage your guests well, here are some tips for hosting a virtual school fundraising event.
Pick a Suitable Event Platform
The bedrock here is the video conferencing platform you choose. While in-person presence allows you to interact without distraction, an online fundraiser can fall prey to poor internet connections, participant caps, and other quirks. While some of these factors are impossible for you to remedy, picking a service that makes it easy to invite and host people is a high priority.
When you select one, have a trial run or two to familiarize yourself and test whether it’s up to the task. You’ll want to look like a natural when fundraiser time rolls around.
Give Clear Donation Instructions
On the big day, a lot will happen all at once. Through this chaos, don’t forget to communicate your passion for connecting students with school supplies and then make your donations instructions crystal clear. One benefit of being online is that if you want attendees to give certain backpacks and school supplies, linking back is a simple matter of dropping it in the chat feature.
Get Creative With Activities
Now, for the substance of the event itself. Get creative to translate or invent activities that work well virtually. Audience participation is your friend here—fight through the natural detachment of the online medium by asking for their input.
To combine giving with activity, hold a raffle. Guests can personally message you to buy a certain number of tickets and you then use an app to determine the winners—no physical tickets or door-to-door selling necessary.
In general, strive to create an ambiance. There’s a profound awkwardness about online gathering, especially for a bunch of relative strangers. Peppering humor, fun questions, serious polls, and mini-games throughout keep it light and moving.
Contact Attendees Afterward
Our final tip for hosting a virtual school fundraising event is contacting your participants later. Ending a fundraiser call and then immediately going back to normal life is a disorienting thing, and guests may almost feel like your event wasn’t real soon afterward.
That’s why getting in touch once again is vital. Take this opportunity to thank them for coming, perhaps thank them for their gift, or to remind them of how they can give in the future.