Social distancing requirements continue to cancel in-person events, making virtual events more important than ever. All event organizers must rethink how to do things, and fundraisers are no exception. The good news is that, with a little creativity, most in-person fundraising events can be reimagined into live-stream or webcast events.

The key to a successful virtual fundraising event is to come up with a ‘hook’. Let your supporters know there will be something special happening that they won’t want to miss during the event. A notable musician or speaker, a special award, or the debut of a special video all give your guests a reason to tune in.

We have five virtual fundraising event ideas that are great alternatives to in-person events.

But first, some general tips:

  • Choose an event theme that is creative and relevant to your organization.
  • Come up with a catchy title or slogan that will make your virtual fundraiser stand out. Click here for some examples.
  • Require donors to pre-register for the event and encourage them to donate throughout the webcast.
  • Ask local talent or celebrities to emcee the event or make remote guest appearances.
  • Give the program variety and keep participants engaged. Show pre-recorded videos made by community leaders.
  • Have a visible donation button that participants can access throughout the live stream. Make sure the emcee periodically reminds people to donate to the cause.
  • Promote, promote, promote! Potential donors need to see an announcement multiple times before they register. Leverage all of your available platforms: your website, e-newsletter, and social media channels.

Virtual Fundraising Idea #1: A Live-Streamed Concert

There is something about live entertainment that creates excitement and suspense for the viewer! You can give donors the live experience at home with a virtual concert. If well-known musicians are out of-reach, spotlight local artists or bands looking for more exposure. Add to the live experience by allowing the audience to make requests and ask questions via messaging.

Virtual Fundraising Idea #2: Host A “No-Gala (Virtual) Gala”

The “No-Gala” virtual event has exploded in popularity since the onset of the pandemic. Attendees get to enjoy a “night out” at home by dressing up (or dressing down) and watching the event from the comfort of their own home. Tickets to the virtual “no gala” can be purchased and donations accepted in advance and during the event. Attendees can upload photos or videos of themselves, all decked out, to be shared via live stream. Or they can simply watch from home in their pajamas.

Virtual Fundraising Idea #3: An Online Class or Workshop

People want fun, educational content to replace their canceled classes. You can offer a virtual workshop in your field. For example, a community food bank could host an online cooking class featuring a local chef. An arts organization could offer a series of Master Classes taught by  renowned artists and performers. Or, an animal shelter could offer special classes on how to care for and groom your pets. No matter what kind of business or organization you have, there is a way for you to share your gifts online!

Virtual Fundraising Idea #4: Host a Competitive “Show”

Tap into our collective obsession with competitive reality shows. Several nonprofits are already using this concept with live cooking or baking challenges. But competitive virtual fundraising doesn’t stop there! Choose an activity that aligns with your cause like singing, trivia, fitness, or design – then add a fun twist unique to your organization. The competition can be live-streamed from any location, including the challenger’s own home. Be sure to allow the audience to interact with one another via chat and vote for their favorite contestants by donating.

Virtual Fundraising Idea #5: Host a Virtual Sing-A-Long

What could possibly be more engaging, fun, and whimsical than singing for a cause? A virtual sing-a-long will appeal to those longing to connect with family and friends in a meaningful and special way. Be sure to enlist the help of local musicians and singers who are in some way connected to your nonprofit. If you’re hosting the sing-a-long during November and December, spread comfort and joy with a holiday theme!

Whether you intend to raise revenue to support your organization or stay connected in your community, a virtual fundraiser can pay dividends while keeping your supporters and staff safe. If you would like to learn more about virtual events and high-quality broadcasts to large unlimited audiences, contact the live stream experts at Lime Crane. Our team offers a rare mix of high-level expertise in Video Streaming Technology, Video Production, and client relations that you will not find anywhere else.