We thought it would be good to share ideas on how to fundraise, from those who have already done it, to those who are still to go, or those who want to keep going! Karen from Tales of a Twin Mum, an event planner by trade, shares how Southampton smashed their total, and went on to more than double it…
Get the community involved
Bringing the community into the relay has so many benefits. It gives the event a feel-good factor, it gives the local press a hook which makes them more likely to cover the story and it can also help you raise a lot more money. As an individual, you can ask friends, family and social media followers to support you. You can spread the word about the event on your blog. However, if you involve more people in your event, it casts the net further. Get a community group/running club/toddler group to take part in some of the route – they’ll love the opportunity to be part of something exciting and they’ll benefit from the PR surrounding the event, while you’ll benefit from a larger group of people sharing the online donation link. Logistically it takes more co-ordination, but the event gains a community vibe which is really quite special.
Think about all of the businesses along the route that you have a connection with. Places where you work/have worked/where your partner works/where your friends work. It’s a good idea to approach them with some specific ideas about how they might get involved, as this makes less work for them. If you have a contact there, pitch your ideas to them and see if they can take it to their manager. If you don’t have any contacts, just pick a few local businesses and give them a call. Explain what you’ll be able to do for them in return (tweet/blog/include links etc.) I approached Southampton Twins and Supertwins Club for help with the route because my blog is about having twins. Lisa, the club’s chair, agreed to help me pull it all together because she thought it sounded fun. She works at B&Q Fareham. Within five minutes of me telling her about the event, she’d called her manager and they’d agreed to get all of the staff at their Fareham store to dress in fancy dress for Team Honk. They raised an incredible £545 in two days.
As bloggers, we have PR contacts – use them! I’d blogged about the opening of Whiteley Shopping Centre last year, and had met some of the businesses there, so I approached them and secured some more support.
Local councils often have sports and leisure teams and city centre managers – speak to them and see if they could help you forge links with the community and local businesses. Councils also have PR teams that can help promote the event, which will make your job easier. Give them as much time as possible though – while we found local contacts really helpful, they needed a longer lead time than the two weeks we had.
Make sure that anyone involved in the event gets credited. The more people you add to your event, the more complicated this can get, but people really do appreciate a thank you. Blog your thanks, tweet your thanks and also send personal messages to tell people how much they’ve helped you raise. If people feel appreciated they’re more likely to get involved in things like this again, and who knows what Team Honk will be planning next year!
We would love to share more tips from featured fundraisers, just tweet @team_honk or email email@example.com