We know events matter in fundraising. Our studies of generational giving in three countries shows that across all generations, people participate in events or give to those who participate in events. Whether it’s Gen Y, Gen X, Boomers or Matures, events are central to supporting charities. But we’ve done one thing to events that is now unacceptable: placing them in their own event silo with very little connection to other areas of giving or engagement.
It’s time to stop that. I was honoured to facilitate a conversation of fundraisers at the Parkinson Society of Canada recently. We were talking about their great fundraising event BUT the conversations that got my attention the most were talking about how we might do a better job of connecting long time participants to bequest opportunities. Event supporters are true supporters and we need to craft better life-cycle journeys that can weave their continued (or completed) participation in events with other ways to grow their support e.g. monthly giving; middle donor; major donor; and planned giving. Let’s start treating our event constituents in a more holistic way.