Dueling pianos! Polar plunges! Foam-filled runs! Oh my! Nonprofit organizations have come up with the most wonderful and magical ideas for fundraising events year after year. With each organization hosting at least one major, annual event, how do you promote your fundraiser so that it stands out in the crowd? Today, let’s focus 100% on how to promote a fundraiser on Facebook, the king of all social media platforms. Here are some great tips that you can do right away to start the buzz for your next big fundraising occasion.
1) Build a Rich Facebook Event Page
A Facebook event page is a great way to announce your fundraiser on social media because it allows your audience to learn about the event, take action towards attending and also promotes the event to their Facebook community. To create a rich event page, use engaging photos and short videos that not only describe the fundraiser itself, but also remind the audience about your mission and why it is important to continue to fund those efforts. Adding buttons for donations and ticket purchase are also helpful to close a transaction right when the individual is engaged with your page. Also, by commenting and RSVP’ing to the event, your supporters are helping promote your event and mission with an even larger online community; yes, maybe, or no are all helpful.
2) Create a Clever Hashtag Specific to Your Fundraising Event
Creating a hashtag for your event is a fun way to involve your audience and a catchy way for them to remember your event. A hashtag is the social media equivalent to a jingle! Plus, there are some fantastic logistical benefits to promoting a hashtag. When individuals use the hashtag on their own social media posts, you can be alerted to this usage and connect with individuals by liking their post, commenting, and sharing it to your events page. It’s a great way to make a one-on-one connection online. Finally, promote the hashtag during the event so that participants may enjoy all of the photos and posts surrounding your fundraiser, which adds value to their experience even after the event. Pro tip: only use one or two hashtags on any given post. Using more decreases engagement significantly.
3) Send Targeted and Direct Invitations via Facebook
Once your event page is ready, and your clever hashtag is good to go, it’s time to alert the (social) media! First, use the settings on your event page to target your audience. This may sound counterintuitive because you want anyone and everyone to come to your fundraising event, but by targeting your audience, you will actually have a higher rate of success because Facebook will be showing your event to people who are the most interested, not, quite literally, the whole world. Next, send direct invitations to everyone in your circle. This list should include staff, volunteers, past participants, donors, individuals affiliated with your business sponsors and mission partners, anyone. With each invitation, you are widening your reach, and with each yes or maybe, you are gaining support and creating buzz for your event. Now just a word of caution, a yes on Facebook does not always result in the purchase of a ticket or registration, so don’t base any of your planning decisions on the Facebook RSVP results. But as mentioned before, any RSVP to the event is a good thing and keeps your fundraiser in front of your audience.
4) Tend to Your Event Page and Your Home Page
Now that you are up and running, be sure to continue to update your home page daily and your event page every couple of days. One mistake that often occurs is that once an event page is created, it is never updated with new content. For both your home page and event page, be sure to keep adding new photos and videos that not only remind viewers of your fundraising event, but the big reasons behind the event. Try engaging posts that ask event-specific questions such as:
Be sure to follow up any comments with your own to support your site visitors and to encourage the conversation to continue. Another clever way to engage your audience it to give away two free tickets or registrations for your event. The terms of winning could be tied to sharing social media posts or individual fundraising contests. Run the contest at least a month ahead of time so that the winner has plenty of time to tell all of their friends about the great event they will be attending for free!
So, take a minute to think about the social media strategy you will use to promote upcoming fundraisers. With a little help from Facebook, your next event will be filled to capacity with participants who are excited to be joining in the fun and thrilled to be an important part of continuing your mission. Best wishes for a successful concert, 5K, golf outing!
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