Charities know, ticketed events live at the heart of fundraising programs. Whether it be a charity gala, golf tournament, run, walk or webinar, events are a living breathing part of being a charity. While these sorts of events can be great money makers for an organization, they are time consuming and expensive for all involved – staff and volunteers alike. Coordinating and managing events requires a lot of work, and there are few cost-effective Events Management Platforms for charities. A survey conducted with CanadaHelps charity clients revealed that 75% of charities that host fundraising events report using a combination of manual processes, such as paper-based tickets and manual tax receipting.
You run events, you know these problems.
Here are some ways that transitioning to an online solution can help reduce the costs and labour associated with your charitable event:
Seamlessly Selling Tickets
If you still rely on selling paper tickets, you are not alone. Many small charities sell and track ticket sales proceeds offline. Moving to an online event platform is an important step in reducing time and administrative costs to run your event. And, it’s one of the best ways to increase ticket sales. Not only can attendees easily purchase tickets anytime, anywhere, you can easily adjust your ticket strategy to maximize your fundraising success; introducing early bird specials, last minute deals, the option to add a donation, sponsorship and more.
Automatically Issuing Tax Receipts
Bar none, tax receipting is the biggest pain point for the organizers of a charitable event. After spending months organizing all event logistics, working hard to sell out your event, and running an event well received by all, the last thing you feel like doing is spending days (or weeks) issuing paper tax receipts. That’s time you should be spending thanking and stewarding event attendees you’ve just invigorated with passion for your cause. With an online events platform designed specifically for charities, tax receipts are generated automatically and sent electronically with the flexibility to issue split receipts at the time of ticket purchase or at a later day when you have all your event numbers calculated.
Customizing and Branding Your Event
When factoring in all of the ‘to-dos’ for running an event, branding is often overlooked, or it can be hard to find the time to build your brand into your event. However, it’s important to incorporate the look, feel, mission and values of your organization into the DNA of the event. Otherwise – why are people coming? When creating an online event, you can inspire attendance by telling your story with words, photos and videos. You can also ensure your online information, emails, and even receipts are consistent with your organization’s brand and reason for being.
We’ve all bought a ticket to an event and because it’s not on our radar, forgot to go. Fellow event organizers know that the no-show rate is painfully high, and after all that work by your staff and volunteers no-shows are a motivation killer! Using an online events platform can keep your event top of mind for attendees. They can add it to their calendar and get automated email reminders. Social sharing features are an additional bonus when planning an event, as it encourages your loyal donors to invite friends and family, and promote the event within their networks.
Built-in Reporting and Communication Tools
Events inspire and raise the engagement of staff, volunteers, donors, board and the public. But, running an event can be incredibly stressful. An online event management platform can dramatically reduce the work involved providing access to real-time information and detailed reports on tickets sold, dollars raised, attendees and so much more. Most platforms also offer built-in email tools so you’re better prepared to respond when those last minute changes happen, and attendee check-in features for a smooth opening to your event.
Are you running a charitable event in 2016? Increase your fundraising success and reduce your workload by using an online events platform. Running charitable events can be easy and fun, and can continue to be a solid source of revenue for your organization. To learn more about how you can transition your event program online you can learn more by clicking here.
Shannon Craig is the Chief Marketing and Product Officer at CanadaHelps. CanadaHelps.org allows donors to safely donate and fundraise online for any registered Canadian charity and also provides charities the secure online fundraising platform and education resources they need to succeed. As a registered charity itself, CanadaHelps has facilitated more than $550 million in donations to Canadian charities online since launching in 2000. Over 16,000 Canadian charities fundraise online using the CanadaHelps platform. Stay connected with CanadaHelps on Twitter @CanadaHelps.