2021 Events for Not for Profits and Fundraisers

In 2020, we all learned that even the most thorough planning couldn’t save us from the pandemic-that-must-not-be-named. Flexibility and adaptability were required to survive. The most amazing thing is that the event production industry and the industries we serve have shown incredible strength and resiliency when our audiences need us the most.

Fundraising has always been important to us and the not for profit industry and this year is no different, but SO much different. We’re writing this blog to help our not for profit clients pivot in the time of a pandemic and post pandemic.

There are great trends in live, in-person, virtual, and hybrid blended events and we want to show you.

  • Hybrid blended – virtual and in-person live events, are here to stay.
  • Recurring giving will be vital to the success of fundraising.
  • Connections between not for profit and for profit organizations will grow     stronger.
  • Meeting supporters where their comfortable will encourage support.
  • Remaining versatile in both strategy and planning is vital.

Hybrid Events

Hybrid blended events are a great way to move forward in the event and fundraising space. Cancelling early in-person events in 2020 were detrimental to our efforts, but it didn’t stop us. At Show Ready, before the pandemic, we already hosted a handful of virtual fundraising events, so seeing the not for profit industry shift this way was exciting. Different than trying a virtual event for something new in years prior, 2020 virtual events were made out of resiliency and force. Even under pressure, many companies made the quick shift from in-person to virtual events, some even within DAYS. To their surprise, some organizations raised over 100% of their goals with as little as a week to plan.

In addition to our refined hybrid blended events, Show Ready has stayed ahead of the curve in 2020. In 2021, we’re introducing our new 3D capability, making virtual and blended-hybrid events even stronger and more engaging.  We have the ability to customize environments to maximize entertainment value as well.

Our overall message from 2020 to 2021 is “the time is now.” We need to plan and be strategic. Virtual participation in fundraising isn’t new, but the full transition from physical to virtual is the first in history.

Benefits to virtual or hybrid blended events are:

  • No more geographic limitations for attendees, speakers, and sponsors
  • Lowers the barrier of entry for participants; no flights, hotels, or additional time off
  • Reduces event cost immensely i.e. venues
  • Easily steward attendees, fundraisers and donors

Recurring giving is more than important ever and online giving is also easier than ever. Creating donation forms, peer to peer fundraising programs, and crowdfunding can all be electronic now and will create better funnels for recurring donors. There is power in recurring gifts – The State of Modern Philanthropy 2019 found that one-time donors who converted into recurring donors were a lot more likely to make another one-time gift on top of their recurring gift.

The data couldn’t be more clear: recurring donors are great for fundraising and 2021 will be its biggest year yet.

Moving to a mostly virtual world, we’re learning that we’re stronger together and partnerships between not for profits and for profits can emerge. Watching others band together in a time where we need to keep our distance is meaningful and impactful. Even though partnership and collaboration has been meaningful in the past, the pandemic has forced us to survive together or perish alone.

Meeting supporters where they feel at home is vital to support in 2021 and beyond. Going virtual means you have to double your efforts, but your reach is limitless. Strengthening your social media presence is going to bring new life to your fundraising efforts. Show Ready believes in having the top of the line equipment and producers available for proper live stream capabilities. It’s great to livestream content so your audience can engage and contribute LIVE. It’s a great way for supporters to feel involved while staying safe from the pandemic.

(pictured left) JDRF 2020 Virtual Fundraiser

At the very least, 2020 made us resilient. At the most, it helped us open our eyes to what our businesses and connections could be. What we can do is prepare, plan, and strategize. Show Ready is here for you to produce high-quality virtual and hybrid blended events and raise funds quickly. Offering events-based fundraising can be a difficult feat, but we know that paired with the proper events, web donations, peer-to-peer fundraising, and crowdfunding, the 2021 year can be your best yet!

It may seem challenging to plan new events, but it doesn’t have to be! With research, proper event production partnerships, and a well-crafted event calendar, we’ll create top-notch events, high engagement, and excitement, together!