Your Fundraising Event Is Over—Now What?

Fundraising gala dinner setting of a gold plate with a menu, fork and napkin, and candlelight

You’ve spent months planning and orchestrating the perfect fundraising event for your donors, volunteers, or members. So much time and effort went into it, it’s a huge relief to have it over. You did it! 

Now what? 

Did you know that people who attend fundraising events are twice as likely to leave a legacy gift to an organization than those who do not attend events? That’s what our historical survey data says. So everyone who attended your event is an outstanding legacy giving prospect. 

Now is the time to make it happen! Here are a few ways you can continue to cultivate the potential for a legacy gift: 

1. Post-event mailer. Send a thank you card, a letter, a newsletter—anything that reminds them of the great time they had and the amazing work your nonprofit is doing. Make sure that this includes an opportunity to learn more about planned giving. 

One way to do this is the basic checkbox on a reply card that offers more information. You could also include a testimony from someone who has named your organization in their estate plan, explaining why they are making your work a long-term priority. Another option is to include any sort of message that inspires them to think about the legacy they want to leave, putting the idea in their minds until such a time as they are ready to make their own plan.

2. Thank you calls. Call them up and thank them for attending your fundraiser. Ask them why your organization matters to them and how they came to know and support your work. Ask them if there is anything they would like to know more about. Remind them how important they are to that work. And if you’re short on time (or staff), recruit your board members, table hosts, or colleagues to help!  

3. Keep a running conversation going. One way to do that with a large number of donors at once is a print survey. If you want to get to the heart of a donor, surveys are a great way to start. With a real desire to know who they are and why they support you, you can craft questions that find out the most important information, and you can keep in touch over the year with a running conversation. If you would like to know more, just let us know. 

Once again, great work on your fundraising event! You brought together a number of caring people who are invested in the same important mission as you. Celebrate that win! And if you’re not quite in the midst of event season yet, we have some tips as you plan your next in-person event too.