A very valuable nugget came out of our 2016 Donor Loyalty Study: Nearly three-quarters of donors who responded to the survey said they were “much more likely” or “somewhat more likely” to donate to a nonprofit after attending one of the organization’s events.
This little morsel of insight got us thinking. So much so, that it became the impetus for our latest research, “Donor Experience Study.” We wanted to dive deep into donor experience and expectations. Turns out, event experiences are huge – with 78 percent of donor respondents telling us that attending a nonprofit’s event made them feel more engaged.
So, if events increase donor engagement and donations, I just have one question for all my fundraiser friends out there: What are you waiting for? It’s time to amplify your fundraising event strategy! Here are three keys to doing just that …
Engage Technology – Particularly, Mobile Technology!
Experiences with technology at events are overwhelmingly positive, and organizations that leverage technology to enhance the experience at a fundraising event or auction see a positive impact on donor engagement.
Seventy-one percent of donors have donated on a mobile device, with a growing interest among younger donors to make all online donations through a mobile device. There’s mounting interest and demand among event attendees, too, for mobile options.
In fact, the majority of donors in our survey would be interested in using mobile technology during a fundraising event. However, only 28 percent said they’ve had an excellent experience with mobile bidding. Millennial donors are the most interested in leveraging technology to enhance fundraising auctions – so if you’re trying to attract a younger audience, go mobile!
Make it Easier for Attendees
This ties right back to technology, because technology does make things easier on attendees. From online registration, to viewing auction items prior to an event, to digital event ticketing and check-in, to texting donations, to mobile auction bidding, technology streamlines processes.
And, let’s face it, there’s nothing worse than attending a fabulous event with dinner, music, and auction folly, then standing in a long line at the end of the evening to check out and claim your winnings. You will likely leave disgruntled and irritated, with all the fun you had a distant memory.
Take Advantage of Post-Event Opportunities
The key to turning event attendees into loyal donors is the event follow-up experience. And, our study revealed that more than twice as many donors say they prefer personalized content than say they prefer generic content. All donors are most interested in personalized impact reports.
So, don’t just send one thank you communication – create a whole post-event series with impact reports and stories, as well as recommended events and donation opportunities. You can leverage marketing automation to incorporate personalized touches.
For more on this topic, download the full Donor Experience Study and watch our recorded webinar, Amplify Your Fundraising Events: Get the Latest Donor Trends and Preferences.