Peer-to-peer fundraising events have become one of the most common ways for not-for-profits to raise money. But are you doing all you can to maximize and safeguard those funds?
Traditional fundraisers generally require your organization to invest heavily in building relationships with donors. But peer-to-peer events — such as walks and runs — allow you to tap the existing relationships of event participants. Instead of using staff resources, you rely on enthusiastic supporters to spread your message and create awareness.
But it’s important to remember that awareness isn’t the end goal — fundraising is. You need to encourage participants not only to sign up and pay the registration fee for your 10K run, but also to get out and sign up sponsors.
One of the most effective ways to encourage fundraising by participants is to set goals. Establish such goals in event materials sent to participants and with online fundraising tools. Feature the top fundraisers on your event’s website and your nonprofit’s social media pages, and offer low-cost prizes such as T-shirts.
Avoid setting goals too high, though. To prevent participants from feeling too much pressure to “produce” for what should be a fun event, enable them to set lower, achievable goals. Also, if participation in your event requires meeting a fundraising minimum, allow participants who prefer not to solicit sponsors to cover the whole amount themselves.
Controls are critical
All nonprofit fundraisers are vulnerable to fraud — and even simple accounting errors. To ensure you maximize your peer-to-peer event’s financial potential, implement controls and require staff and volunteers to follow them to the letter. Also make sure online donation applications are protected by encryption and other cyberfraud deterrents. For more information on fundraising and fraud prevention, please contact us.