Fundraising Blog

Creating Compelling Virtual Fundraising Events

Dee Brannick
Fundraising specialist, Co-Founder of GalaBid

Running an online fundraiser offers a unique opportunity to connect with your supporters and achieve your fundraising objectives - for a fraction of the cost of a live event.

Using some innovative strategies, you can create a virtual fundraiser that offers a engaging and compelling experience.

In this guide, we'll delve into how you can create an online fundraiser to rival an in-person event, with a particular emphasis on silent auctions, fundraising campaigns, and raffles.

Make Your Virtual Fundraiser Fun and Engaging

1. Treat it Like an In-person Event: Brand and Promote

Approach your online fundraiser with the same enthusiasm and promotional effort you would dedicate to a live event.

Develop a distinct brand and visual identity for your fundraiser, and consider adopting a fun theme that participants can eagerly embrace. Promote your event well in advance through email marketing (EDMs) and engaging social media posts. 

2. Explore Fundraising Options: Mix and Match 

Select from a diverse range of fundraising initiatives that align with your objectives and the scale of your event.

You can even combine multiple options to offer supporters a variety of participation opportunities beyond the duration of the event itself. For example, blend an online silent auction (spanning two weeks) with a live pledge drive during the event to encourage direct donations.

3. Make it Engaging and Fun: Emulate Live Event Features 

Infuse the excitement of a live event into your online fundraiser by incorporating engaging elements:

  • Auctioneers and MCs: Livestream your auctioneer or MC to introduce your cause, provide donation updates, stimulate bids, and entertain participants. 
  • Real-time Updates: Keep participants engaged with donation thermometers that rise as contributions pour in. Share live bid updates so participants can witness the latest winning bids. Leverage text notifications to alert bidders about outbids or impending auction closures.
  • Tell Your Story: Your cause serves as the heart of the event. Leverage the online platform to convey its significance and illustrate how donations and bids will make a positive impact. Utilize a blend of pre-recorded videos and live storytelling to effectively communicate your message.

4. Seamless Payments: Simplify the Process

Ensure that checkout  is effortless online, utilizing text or email to distribute invoices. Provide a smooth,  hassle-free experience for supporters to make payments. 

5. Express Gratitude: Thank Your Supporters 

Leverage your event host or MC to convey sincere appreciation to your supporters for their generous donations and bids.

Encourage them to share their thoughts and event experiences on social media using your designated hashtags. Demonstrate gratitude for their contributions, making them feel valued and integrated into a supportive community.

6. Celebrate Success: Acknowledge Your Achievement 

Take a moment to celebrate the triumph of your online fundraising event. Extend congratulations to yourself and your team for orchestrating an engaging and highly successful fundraiser that positively impacts the lives of others.

In Summary

Running your online fundraiser online and creating an exhilarating experience is entirely attainable through careful planning and innovative approaches.

By emphasizing branding, effective promotion, the integration of captivating features, and streamlining the payment process, you can captivate your supporters and attain your fundraising objectives.

Whether it's a silent auction, a fundraising campaign, or a raffle, your online event has the potential to create a meaningful difference while delivering a memorable experience for participants.

About GalaBid

Ideal for donations. Perfect for Raffles. Awesome for Live and Silent Auctions! GalaBid’s online fundraising platform is designed for fundraisers of all types and sizes. For over 10 years we’ve been helping non-profits, charities, community clubs, churches, schools, and individuals to raise more and make a difference.

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