One of the very first steps in planning your fundraiser event, is obtaining the initial 20 RSVP’s. The reason why there must be 20 confirmed attendees before your date and time can be solidified, is because this number ensures that you will have a successful fundraiser–you won’t raise much money for your cause if only 5 people show up to the restaurant.
After years of working with charities and other fundraising groups here at GroupRaise, we know that often times people can feel a bit timid about this number, but there is no reason for that! There is nothing to be intimidated by if you follow these simple tips. We’ve outlined the best practices for charities that make reaching those first 20 RSVP’s a no-brainer.
Break Down the Audience of your Fundraiser Event
Make a list of all the people you want to invite, mark down what their relation is to you or your organization and why they might want to come to the fundraiser event, and know the best way to reach out to them. Keep in mind that there are still a few old-souls out there who don’t use Facebook, so sending out a mass group invite over Facebook can be ineffective.
Mass Facebook invites must be used wisely. Often times it depersonalizes the invitation–people are much more likely to make a commitment when they are invited face-to-face or over a personalized text or phone call. We strongly urge to start small; after you have reached your initial 20 RSVP’s then get on social media and begin to supersize your event.
Utilize Social Circles
Always bare in mind that people have varying reasons as to why they would attend a fundraising dinner. A lot of the time patrons think it would be a great opportunity to catch up with old friends and family that they don’t get to see very often, so invite all your friends and family!
Others will want to attend because they don’t want to miss out on a fun event within their social circle. If this is the case for invitees, be sure to focus on that social circle–be it the church, the country club, your kids school, etc. People are more likely to come when they know others are there, so emphasize that others will be there!
This is also a great opportunity to capitalize on periodic events–if your co-worker’s birthday is just around corner, throw her a birthday party with the dual purpose of a fundraising meal! After all, it only takes one minute to turn any night out into a fundraiser with GroupRaise.
The +1 Principle
Have everyone bring a plus-one. People can often be trepidatious about inviting others to an event where they are guests, but for an event such as a fundraising dinner the phrase “the more the merrier” couldn’t be truer.
Encourage all of your attendees to bring a guest–a sibling, a friend, a significant other, etc. Just think, if you get 10 people to commit to coming and bringing just one other person, you’ve reached 20 confirmations and did only half the work!
Tell Your Story
As we mentioned earlier, people have a variety of reasons for attending such events. Some may come to support the cause, but more likely they come to support their loved ones. If you are a volunteer for a charity, share your story with everyone. Inspire them with your passion for the cause you support, and their likelihood of commitment will skyrocket. Personability and passion are two of the main characteristics of a successful fundraising dinner.