Fundraising Ideas

Creative fundraising in the era of coronavirus

5 ways to host a successful online event during the 2020 fundraising season

A lot has changed in the past few weeks as COVID-19 has spread across the globe. We’ve been hearing from countless nonprofits who are already reeling from the financial impacts.

While it can be demoralizing for your team to make hard decisions about postponing or cancelling fundraising events, it's important to stay optimistic and think creatively. Social media and online channels allow you to keep in touch with donors and provide alternative means to raise significant dollars for your mission, which is more important than ever.


Here are 5 alternative ways to hold your next event:

A Virtual Challenge

We have seen many social media challenges circulate the web as individuals practice isolation and spend more time online. The 10x10 challenge on Instagram encourages people to keep active by posting a video of them completing 10 push ups and then nominating 10 people.

Is there a way for your nonprofit to send a challenge to your community? Whatever the challenge, make sure that it aligns with your organization's goals and purpose. If you are a mental health organization, perhaps you could challenge people to check in with their friends and loved ones during this time.


Virtual Fun Runs

Unable to host your walk/run fundraiser? While postponing your walk/run fundraiser might be a viable option, you might also want to consider other ways to host a fitness-focused event. Get your participants to download apps like Strava, Map My Run or Nike Run Club to track their own run and post onto your chosen social platform with a specific hashtag (e.g. #Runforlife2020). This way, you are still able to complete the activity and achieve a similar sense of community. As everyone's time will be recorded, you can send out certificates or medals of completion to all your donors. As photos are posted on their individual social channels, be encouraged to repost on your social channels page and shout out your donors.


Livestream Concert

Many musicians and artists have performed live concerts, dj sets and performances over the past week. Do you have any supporters who would like to host a benefit concert on your Facebook or Instagram live? Set up a time and share it with your community. Do remember, that this doesn’t have to be a concert, it could be a school teacher reading a story book for children.


Flash Fundraiser

Whilst peer to peer fundraisers have become more popular, a common piece of feedback that we often receive is that donors don’t feel a sense of urgency in the matter and therefore loses traction. By holding a flash fundraiser (only lasting 24 hours), it will create a sense of urgency and encourage more people to take immediate action.


Online Auctions

Fear not, our latest release allows you to hold auctions online. Get donors excited to give at your virtual event by showcasing all of your auction items with engaging photos and starting bid amounts. Fill your auctions with donated items from sponsors and businesses who are eager to support you in the crisis but may not be in as strong of a cash position for major gifts. Bidders can participate from the comfort of their homes.