Planning a fundraising event is a major undertaking. As such, it requires a significant amount of planning and budgeting to ensure that the costs and efforts truly bring positive returns. Not only do you want to make the money spent on the fundraiser returned, you want to bring in an abundance of additional funds to provide for your programs and projects. The staffing decisions are critical.
The first step is to create a fundraising event committee. This is the team who will be dedicated to ensuring that the fundraiser goes off without a hitch. They must be reliable, hard working, organized, determined, and willing to dedicate the amount of time required to accomplish the goals set before them. They need to also be able to create something that will be memorable for all parties involved, especially your donors. So, choosing this team wisely is paramount.
It is important to know each member’s strengths and ensure they are assigned tasks appropriate to their skill sets. This means you are not hiring one person to do everything. Some will be responsible for managing a team of volunteers. Some will be responsible for the vendors, space, and partnerships. Some will be responsible for donor relations and communication. Some will be responsible for promotion and website management. All members will be required to perform duties outside of normal working hours in order for this event to be properly planned, implemented, and followed up on. All must also carry a healthy dose of enthusiasm to ensure the best possible results.
Members of your fundraising event committee should include the following: Event Coordinator, Event Communications Manager, Event Operations Manager, and Fundraising Program Manager.
The event coordinator is responsible for managing the overall management of each team involved in the event and its planning. They may not personally manage the volunteers, but they will oversee the person who is in charge of volunteer management. The event coordinator also ensures that all parts align with the budget. This person will also connect each team’s contributions to ensure a perfectly patchworked quilt is accomplished and all parts align smoothly.
Your guests and donors will find the event enchanting, enticing, and inspiring. They will be happy to contribute to such a well organized nonprofit and appreciate the way in which the organization rises to the occasion to ensure a truly successful event. Last but not least, the Event Coordinator is also the person who orchestrates the evening in real-time and eradicates any mishaps to ensure a successful evening for all.
Event Communications Manager
This is a marketing role. The Event Communications Manager is responsible for creating excitement online and offline about the fundraising event. They will plan and distribute the fundraising event calendar to all members of the committee. This calendar includes specific details regarding email invitations, printed invitations, and social media campaign promotions. The topics of each promotion will be included in this calendar so that the entire team is aware of what is being presented and can ensure that what they are contributing aligns with the marketing strategy. They will implement these campaigns using your chosen donor communication and fundraising platforms.
Event Operations Manager
The Event Operations Manager is someone who has strong organizational skills and meticulous attention to detail. This person also needs to have strong social skills that bode well for constructive communications, negotiations, and agreements with vendors. They will also be the one to source vendors for various aspects of the event such as caterers, florists, and more. They gather the information. The Event Coordinator will make the final call after reviewing the options.
Fundraising Program Manager
The Fundraising Program Manager is responsible for creating and implementing the fundraising activities surrounding the fundraising event. The Fundraising Program Manager will be responsible for generating various activities throughout the event marketing phase and during the actual event to ensure optimum giving and by making it a fun experience. This person has the most critical role in the overall success of the fundraising event, so ensure that the person chosen has the capacity to take this on and implement it in an enthusiastic manner. Their impact can make or break the entire event effort.