If you build it, will they come? Five tips for driving fundraiser event ticket sales posted 04/23/13

By Steve Bauer
Board Member

Organizing a major fundraising event for a non-profit group requires a lot of planning, resources and commitment. Getting people to show up for your event — especially for a newly-formed young friends group — is often an even bigger challenge. Here are five quick tips to help make your next fundraising event a success.

1. Give advanced notice

Young professionals have a lot of demands competing for their time and their money. Announce the date of your event far ahead of time before social calendars fill up.

2. Word of mouth trumps advertising

Most young professionals attend fundraising events because they have a personal connection to the cause or organization, and/or because a close friend asks them to go. Rarely will someone in their 20s or 30s spend a Saturday night at a charity function just because they saw an ad in a magazine or newspaper. Friends, family and coworkers of your board members are usually your best bet for boosting ticket sales.

3. The price is right

While the goal of your event is to raise money for your organization, if you set your ticket prices too high then you’ll miss out on reaching a larger pool of potential attendees. It’s better to have a packed house at a reasonable entry price than to have a high priced event where only a handful of people show up.

4. Make it easy to tell others

Promote your event on social networks like Facebook and Twitter, and add social sharing features to email invitations, event websites and online ticket sales sites so people can invite their friends with a quick click of the mouse.

5. Offer incentives

Offer early registration discounts. Provide group rates for bulk ticket purchases. Give additional raffle prize entries or drink tickets if people get their friends to sign up.

What other advice would you give to a new young professionals group? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

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