Peer-to-peer fundraising events can help nonprofit organizations acquire new donors, spread awareness, and fund vital programs and services. Do you want to host a peer-to-peer fundraising event, but you aren’t sure where to start? The first step is recruiting participants. Here are some event recruitment strategies to help you get started.

Using Your Website as an Event Recruitment Strategy

Without a doubt, your event website is the most cost-effective and immediate method of recruitment and communication for your event.

Peer-to-peer fundraising comes with promoting your website in all of your marketing materials and linking it to your nonprofit’s website. In addition, participants can easily visit your Mightycause event website. Don’t have one yet? Learn about event fundraising websites on Mightycause.

Mightycause event fundraising pages are also designed to:

  • Display event information
  • Register participants online
  • Capture the email addresses of registrants and donors, which allows for easier and more cost-effective communication in the future
  • Recognize sponsors, top fundraisers, and teams
  • Accept donations
  • Allow participants to fundraise

Using Email to Recruit Participants

Email is a cost-effective, and immediate method of communication for your participants.  In fact, it keeps them engaged in your event campaign.

Recommendations for web-based fundraising:

  • Capture as many email addresses as possible from your constituents.
  • Keep your website current.
  • Keep messages clear and concise.
  • Take the time to teach your participants how easy it is to fundraise online.

 Communication Strategies

It is important to realize there are two forms of communication you will want to consider to support your event recruitment strategies.

  1. Personalized to participants who are already familiar with your event
  2. Targeted to new groups who fit the demographics of an event participant/potential supporter

Personalized Communications

Past participants need to know that your organization remembers who they are, how they have contributed in the past. You should have a specific communications plan to invite them to join in your event again.

Consider using this type of recruitment for groups such as:

  • Past participants
  • Team captains
  • Event volunteers
  • Sponsors and vendors

Not every piece of communication to these markets needs to be personalized, but the primary and main recruitment pieces should recognize that you know who they are.

Recommendations for personalized mail:

  • Personal letter (include name and past amount raised)
  • Event details (include new and exciting for this year)
  • An easy method to register
  • Incentive for registering early and recruiting their friends

A sample list of scheduled communications to past participants includes:

  • Save the date postcard.
  • Personalized letter/pre-registration packet
  • Fundraising/team captain packet (personalize cover letter)
  • Quarterly Newsletter to show the impact their participation has made
  • Event reminders and communications
  • Follow-up/Thank You/Wrap-Up

Targeted Communications

Segmented communications are generally geared to audiences who are not yet participating in your event, but who fit one or more characteristics or demographics of your target market.

Targeted audiences may include:

  • Women’s groups
  • Church groups
  • Walking/running/activity clubs/groups/organizations
  • Groups interested in your mission and cause
  • Healthcare organizations
  • Non-participants with a connection to your cause

Consider creating an event brochure so you have a piece to give to anyone who is interested in your event no matter who they are. Then consider creating a supplemental piece that appeals to the interests and needs of the specific audience.  For instance, if you are reaching out to walking/running/activity clubs, include additional information about the physical aspects of your event.  If you are mailing to people with a known connection to your mission/cause, perhaps include a message from a current participant who also has a connection too.  It is important to find a way to connect to your audience, even if you do not know them yet.

Personal Recruitment Strategies

Personal recruitment requires the most time and effort from staff and volunteers, but it can also reap the most value. It should also occur with key past participant leaders, or current prospects, such as:

  • Top fundraisers from the past few years
  • Team captains of top fundraising teams
  • Corporate sponsor teams
  • Board members

It’s best to use personal recruitment for participants who will:

  • Bring in significant team members and dollars (i.e. corporate sponsor leaders)
  • Provide access to added key resources
  • Provide significant dollars and commitment to the mission

Since personal recruitment is time-consuming, it is important to plan ahead and start early.  Therefore, personal recruitment and sharing can occur year-round.  These participants are your most important constituents, where cultivating and maintaining relationships matter the most.

Types of personal recruitment:

  • Personal visit to a corporation; meet with HR or leadership to form a team; simultaneously, work together to determine internal company recruiting and fundraising strategies.
  • Visit a board meeting to talk about your event; discuss how board members can get involved themselves, and how they can assist in reaching key community members for team participation (or sponsorship).
  • Talk to past participants who work for prospective company teams; work with the participant to determine key contacts in the company and set up a recruitment visit (in fact, companies like to join initiatives in which their employees are already involved!).

Personal event recruitment strategies are all about creating, building, and maintaining relationships. Especially as these important participants will drive a large portion of your event revenue.  It is equally important to treat these participants like your major donors.  After all, many of them will lead a team to, or individually contribute a ‘major gift’ to your organization.

Mightycause Can Help!

Set up a demo with one of our team members here to learn more about how Mightycause can help you surpass your event goals.

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