Video+Virtual Fundraising Events
If a picture is worth a thousand words, a video is worth even more in terms of storytelling, thanks to the added elements of moving pictures, great narrative and evocative music. Powerful storytelling equals successful fundraising. Period. And in the new world of virtual fundraising, video is more important than ever. It can and does make your virtual fundraiser more meaningful and memorable. Plus, if you use it in conjunction with your org’s all-stars, it’ll not only make your entire program more fun, it’ll make it UNFORGETTABLE! Time to ask the question: What can video do for you?
Replace Talking Heads
Your live virtual event will be far shorter than your typical fundraising event. Your host and auctioneer will need the vast majority of that time to speak mission and SELL, SELL, SELL! A keynote address shouldn’t be a 2-3 minute talking head because it’s not compelling for viewers. Give your mission ambassador their 2-3 minutes, but for maximum impact and control of the narrative, have them present their message visually in video. With your shortened timeline, controlling the narrative is essential. If language isn’t laser-focused on your org’s mission, it doesn’t belong. Simple as that. That’s why we advise pre-recording speeches and masterfully integrating them into video, graphics and other visuals. For folks watching at home, words are so much more impactful when what they SEE drives home what they HEAR. We have fabulous, experienced video production mavens who can help you accomplish this. Reach out!
Transition with Video Vignettes
Since your live virtual event will be so much shorter than what guests are used to, make every second count! A fun and creative way to do this is through short video vignettes. They are a terrific way to transition between production elements effectively. A major thing we learned from our virtual fundraisers is the importance of a seamless show. Transitions are essential – you simply cannot jump from topic to topic. Not only will you lose people, you’ll look like public access. You can do better – we KNOW you can! So utilize short, sweet little videos, serving several purposes – they’ll keep viewers at home engaged, give time for software and screens to refresh and they’ll give your virtual team (auctioneer, emcee, software/AV teams) time to “reset” when necessary. You could use your org’s recognizable faces and have some fun with them. Maybe the ED or board chair does a tongue twister, while encouraging folks at home to follow along? Boom – ten hilarious seconds of content AND a needed reset for your team. Maybe someone performs a magic trick. Or recites a silly poem that aligns with your org’s mission. (Let us help you write these!) Perhaps you tell a story within a story in small segments broken up by live auction items. The possibilities are endless! Imagine the potential if your org’s leaders are willing to participate in this way. Whatever you can think of, give it a try! Consider starting off your show off with some sort of trivia – “What’s the ED’s favorite ice cream flavor?” The first person at home who responds with the correct answer wins a small gift – a gift certificate, a bottle of wine, etc. You’re not only keeping up the pace of your virtual show, you’re garnering engagement from the folks watching at home. They’ll feel more involved. As a result, not only is your virtual event more fun for everyone, it becomes more intimate. Intimacy is one of the things we miss the most when we’re not able to gather in person. How else can we replicate that involvement and connection with donors?
Keep Viewers Engaged
To maximize revenue from your virtual event, we’re ALL about teamwork. We don’t just offer an auctioneer and an emcee. We bring you a TEAM of professional assistants who fill a number of vital roles: They respond – in real time – to folks watching at home, they alert the auctioneer when new bids come in, and they bring the energy plus the fun! In addition, a professional event clerk tracks incentives and donations accurately. Use us wisely and your revenue WILL SOAR! Here’s but one example – at the top of your virtual fundraiser, let folks watching at home know that if they raise a certain amount of money in the next 20 minutes, they’ll be able to see the org’s ED perform a special talent. Maybe it’s a song, a dance, the worm (thanks, Barbara from Catlin Gabel!). If the org’s representative isn’t present or doesn’t want to do their “special talent” live, get it on video prior to your virtual event and promise viewers at home they’ll get to see it if they reach a certain fundraising goal. We guarantee – the bids will come rolling in and our team will be ready! Think about it – how much would you pay to see the president of the board do the worm?! Or floss? Or dab? Seriously – we have so many ideas on how to get EVERYONE involved, including the folks at home. We’re already having fun and we’re just getting warmed up in this new world of virtual fundraising and virtual galas!
Powerful storytelling will always equal successful fundraising. But storytelling and creating content in the virtual event world requires pivots as well. So let’s get creative! Ready to go virtual? Reach out and pivot with us!