Part of our Virtual Fundraising Event and Gala series, view more articles here – Virtual Fundraising Events
Do you want to host a virtual golf outing but aren’t sure how?
We have ideas to help you make your virtual golf outing a successful fundraising event without spending a whole day on the greens.
There are definite advantages to hosting a virtual golf event. There are no geography bounds for one and you don’t need to book the golf club months in advance. Yet, hosting a successful virtual golf event does require forethought—especially, if you’re new to online events.
First, there are two primary ways to host a virtual golf outing. Some organizations host it over a period of several days. Guests hit the links on their own time on a course of their choosing and log in to share scores. Others hold it entirely online and in real time to encourage engagement and make it feel more social.
Here are a few ideas for bringing your online golf outing to life:
Planning an online fundraising event does present a few challenges if you’ve never done it before. Namely, technology considerations and ensuring your guests feel involved. Here are a few ways to help.
Choose Your Date (s) – Every event needs a day and time. This gives a built-in deadline for donations and planning.
Involve the Golf Club – The venue matters as much as ever. One way you can incorporate it in your virtual event is coordinating with the club pro to offer a welcome and a quick lesson. This will help your guests get into the golfing spirit no matter where they are located.
Logistically, you could record this ahead of time or host it live similar to a televised event depending on your time, resources, and preference.
Engage Your Guests – You want to create a social aspect and one way you can do that is to ask your guests to wear golf clothes or, suggest they wear over the top golf attire like Three Stooges. You could have prizes for the most over the top golf attire.
Invite your board, committee members, and other guests to submit photos/videos ahead of time. Some ideas include their favorite trick shot, funny swings, or favorite golf courses. You can create a video montage of these to show during the online event and have prizes for the best ones.
Have a Signature Drink – Refreshments are a big part of any gathering – even a virtual one. One idea is to have the club’s bartender demonstrate a “mocktail” recipe.
For example, a cranberry spritzer (made with cranberry and tonic water) could be perfect in the summer. You could even deck out a virtual golf cart for the event to personalize it.
Include a Raffle – Just because you’re not in a physical location, doesn’t mean you can’t host a raffle. You can include the items in social media and email if you want to host it separately but in tandem with the golf outing. Technology makes it easy for your guests to bid. Click here for raffle best practices.
Golf Course Virtual Backgrounds – To get in the golfing spirit, your guests may enjoy adding a golf course background to their interactions. Golf Digest shared these Master’s inspired backgrounds for Zoom.
Incorporate Social Media – Social media is a great way to spread the word about your golf outing. You can invite your guests to upload pictures of themselves in their golf attire to their own social media pages and tag your organization before, during, and after the event.
Part of your event promotion could include pictures of the golf club and screenshots of the event (for future golf events.)
Walk the Golf Course – Some golf clubs have virtual tours available of the course. These are designed for serious golfers to plot their shots ahead of time but they’re also great ways to engage your guests. They could pick their favorite hole and offer a donation as a way of “taking a shot.”
Theme donations – You can tie donations to golf by offering different levels for a “hole in one,” a “bogey,” a “mulligan,” and so on. You can encourage people to buy ahead of time when they register.
Continue to Update Guests on the Fundraising – While you want your guests to have a good time at the virtual golf outing, everyone knows it’s for a good cause. You can keep everyone updated via a Leaderboard or call outs throughout the event. To follow up the event, you can send a special “thank you” to sponsors and donors.
As you can see, it’s possible to host a golf outing completely online. With good pre-planning, you can keep it fun, social, and successful.
Note: Keep in mind that most states regulate or even may prohibit raffle tickets sales. So if you’re planning to use mobile bidding to sell your raffle tickets, be sure to check your state’s laws about raffles.