21 Sep 2020

Digital Communications: Amplify Your Fundraising By Integrating Virtual Events With Digital Campaigns

By Patrick Kennedy

5 min read

Events are a love / hate relationship for many, but we all know that events drive engagement, that’s why we do them. Not all events are engaging and an event without the proper context can drive your budget into a hole. Now in our digital world we especially need to be thinking about context as our events are turning virtual. By establishing our “Why” and a strong narrative we will create meaningful context and engagement across live and virtual gatherings.

For years I’ve seen a ton of success integrating live events with digital campaigns. A well orchestrated campaign can provide a much needed and powerful context for your fundraising event. With this strategy it’s not about the event as much as it’s about the campaign as a whole. Making the event a compliment versus the main focus will allow you to leverage your fundraising event in a powerful story based framework to drive engagement toward your fundraising goals. So as we move into a virtual event landscape, we can make the digital campaign even more explosive, especially now that people are becoming normalized to the virtual meet-up. The digital and virtual landscape is dynamic. If we integrate virtual events with digital campaigns we will be able to elevate the event medium to make a more powerful appeal that highlights impactful stories, and casts a vision that inspires your constituents to give.

You may be thinking that the virtual event will never replace the in-person event, and I agree. In person connections will always be more meaningful but that doesn’t mean that we can’t leverage the digital landscape to create impact moments that can be just as lucrative!

According to recent study, Why America Gives 2020, “30% of survey respondents said they supported or participated in a virtual charity event since the start of the pandemic. Of those respondents, 60% said they donated and/or raised more in the virtual environment than they have for past in-person events. These results not only underline people’s willingness to participate virtually, but the possibility for greater levels of support.”

Event planners like Danielle Snelson are pushing the fold on virtual events and seeing a huge upside. The most noticeable upside is that virtual events can be a fraction of the cost to produce, which can allow you to increase returns by connecting with more people while cutting production time. An innovation that can cut down on time and expense while increasing revenue is definitely worth pursuing – and when you sync it up with a well orchestrated campaign, you may just see exponential returns.  

This is a great 10 min conversation with Danielle Snelson on her experience with virtual events.

Here’s the big take away: There is a huge upside to virtual events. Consider creating one and put it into context within a digital campaign.