This post features a guest article from our friend Stacey Wonder.
Fundraising events are an increasingly popular way for non-profit organizations and even individuals to raise awareness and of course funding for various different causes. However, these events usually require willing sponsors to contribute donations and other resources in order to be successful. Effective communication, setup and wording can play a huge role in how potential sponsors respond and contribute to your cause, and is a crucial part of the fundraising planning process.
Check out these tips for creating great fundraiser invites sponsors can’t resist!
Clarity is Key to a Successful Invitation
When sending out fundraising event invites to potential sponsors, it is important that they include all relevant information and that this information clearly visible and easy to understand. There are a few important points that you will want your invite to hit:
- Who is hosting the event?
- What is the event supporting?
- What is the event?
- When & Where is the event being held?
- Do you have a hook like special guest or speaker?
- What is your contact information?
- How much is sponsorship?
All of this information must be easy to find, even at a glance.
Choose Your Wording Carefully
The success or failure of a fundraising invitation can depend a great deal on the wording that you use. It is important to know who your target audience is and how to talk to them. Are you using the appropriate tone and language? Is what you are saying engaging? It is important to consider the impact your words are going to have on potential sponsors or donors. For example, studies show that using the word ‘you’ rather than ‘I’ will be more effective.
The wording of the invitation should speak directly to potential sponsors and make it personal. Explain how becoming a sponsor can benefit them – make the invitation all about them! Avoid using ‘I’ or ‘We’ completely if you can – this is not about you and it will quickly turn off donors. Keep the focus on how donating is going to help the sponsor. What will they gain? What will they help to accomplish?
Put a Personal Spin on Invites
It’s easy to send out a generic email invitation to the address listed on a company website in the hope of attracting a sponsor. However, the truth is, these are usually monitored by a low-level employee and your invite will never be seen by the people who actually make sponsorship decisions. If you really want to attract great sponsors, then you need to take a more personal approach to your invites. Take some time to research companies you might want to approach and find out the name and direct contact information of the people you want to speak to.
Send your invitation directly to them and make sure it reaches its intended destination. If you have contacts then do not be afraid to use them to get to the people who would be your preferred sponsors. It may even be a good idea to visit the business in person to make a personal invitation. It also pays to follow up on the invite around a week later to make sure they received it and to ask if they have any questions about the event or your available sponsorship packages.
Don’t Undervalue Accuracy
Another key factor when producing your invitations to a fundraising event is accuracy. The last thing you want to do is send out an invite to potential sponsors which is riddled with spelling mistakes or grammatical errors. Nothing is guaranteed to put off a sponsor faster than a sloppy looking invite. If you can’t take the time to properly proofread your promotional materials, then how can a sponsor feel comfortable that you will use their donation responsibly? If you want to create a really great, professional impression then those invites need to be word perfect.
However, it is very difficult to proofread your own work since your brain already thinks it knows what you have written. Lots of mistakes slip through the cracks because of that problem. One of the best things to do to avoid this situation is to hire a professional editor to look over the finished invite before it is sent out. There are many writing and editing online services such as Essay Tigers that can polish your words to perfection.
Common Sponsor Invite Mistakes to Avoid
- Not being clear about how the sponsor will benefit from their involvement. When asking a sponsor to support a fundraising event, it is almost akin to entering into a partnership with that person. You get their support, but they expect something in return as well – usually advertising. One of the most common mistakes fundraisers make when inviting sponsors to support their event is not being clear about how the sponsor will benefit from their involvement.
- Come across as awkward or embarrassed when approaching sponsors. This is another huge mistake. It is part of human nature to feel this way when asking for money, but when it comes to this type of sponsorship keep in mind that most businesses do want to support a charitable cause, its just a case of choosing one! Research shows that 70% of consumers would switch to a different brand based on the good causes they support, so sponsors are not going to need too much convincing to support fundraising events – what they need convinced about is why they should be supporting yours. If your invite comes off as anything less than confident, then you won’t make their short list!
In conclusion, the way that you word a fundraiser invite can have a huge impact on how potential sponsors are going to respond to your invitation. Hopefully these tips we have shared will help you to create irresistible invitations to your next fundraising event.
Stacey Wonder is a copywriter and a content marketer who currently works for Essay Tigers. She has vast experience in completing diverse advertising materials for the company. Also, she works as a freelance blogger who creates posts about self-development, career and writing. Stacey always tries to develop her professional skills and share best practices with others.