Creating Value for Major Donors

Many organizations create a specific group of admissions for sponsorships or VIP tickets, but what is incentivizing those donors to buy something at a higher price point?

Here are some ideas that will help distinguish your VIP/Major Donors and encourage ticket purchasers to upgrade next year.

Valet Parking

Some event venues have limited parking. Include in their VIP ticket purchase an exclusive parking pass that allows them an upgraded parking experience. Perhaps this is a separate parking line, or they get their car from the valet first. If you are using a valet, check with the company before your event to see what options you have. Some valet companies will even put special thank you gifts/bags in the car that the VIP can find when they leave.


Provide a special pre-bidding hour for guests who have an upgraded ticket or sponsorship. They could even have their own reception as a “Major Donors” thank you the night prior or even several weeks in advance. This gives them a more intimate connection with staff at your organization, as well as networking with other donors and sponsors.

Specialty Menu

Having your caterer or local restaurateurs create a specialty menu for your VIP sponsors that are only available at specific tables can be an easy way to create a high value opportunity. Is there a local celebrity chef that loves helping out your organization? Provide a great marketing opportunity by previewing the menu that can only be tasted at that head table to sell a presenting sponsorship.

You can also carry over that idea into specialty desserts for a dessert dash, or create a signature cocktail only available during the VIP hour.

Designated Bidder

Give your VIPs a designated bidder to help monitor and place bids under the direction of the VIP. Or, create stickers with the bid number that the assistant can go place on bid sheets for them at their desired bid level.

By creating small changes that accentuate the value of things you offer, you’re more likely to sell out at a higher level for the next year, or even give your committee an excuse to sell tickets at a higher price. Small changes can dramatically increase the value your event provides, and in turn affect your bottom revenue line.

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