Fundraising events can get hectic.
Maintaining full and accurate contact information will help avoid long registration lines, awkward conversations with unregistered guests and general frustration to what should be a fun and rewarding evening.
Collecting and maintaining accurate contact information for guests, volunteers, sponsors, and vendors will help streamline your event and provide a better guest experience.
Here are some tips to gathering the correct information and organizational benefits that come from a little data diligence.
Get started off on the right foot by strongly encouraging your guests and sponsors to purchase their tickets prior to event day. Some donors and sponsors may have an entire table purchased but don’t know who will be attending—this can cause delays at check-in and negatively impact the guest experience.
With pre-registration and proactive information gathering, you’ll be able to:
- Stay in constant communication with guests, sponsors, and volunteers.
- Regularly promote the event and be assured your donors receive up to date information in real time.
- Offer enticing sponsorship opportunities; such as additional seats, ad placements and in-kind donations.
- Encourage volunteer participation beyond their traditional duties; such as donating or procuring auction items or committing to additional time performing other duties, such as data entry.
- Target potential guests more strategically by analyzing your current and past guest list.
Tips on Encouraging Guests to Register Prior to the Event
- Create a ticket and sponsorship sales point of purchase.
- Encourage ticket purchasers to register guests in the event invitation.
- If you’re providing an online store direct your sponsors to your point of purchase to buy sponsorships, merchandise, memberships, and all the other great items you offer.
- Send your sponsors and donors a template to record all their guests’ information, include a space for each attendee.
- Read more tips about requesting guest information from sponsors.
On the day of the event you’ll find your prep work will pay off with a smoothly run registration table along with happy volunteers, sponsors and guests. Using event management software will facilitate an efficiently run event by managing seating and auction assignments prior to event day.
Using event management software will ensure that:
- Donors and guests will be able to quickly check in, rather than being held up at the registration table due to missing information, providing a wonderful experience for the guests.
- Volunteers can quickly and easily do their jobs; checking in guests and providing all the materials they’ll need to creating a fantastic experience.
- Your team members will have a great resource to refer back to throughout the fundraiser as they seek out guests, vendors and sponsors.
- Event organizers and staff will be able to see statistics in real-time during the event.
Tips for Quick Updates to Contact Information During the Event
- Print registration forms with the current contact information so they can verify and update at check in.
- Provide blank registration forms so volunteers can capture those guests that haven’t yet been formally registered.
- Create an area away from the registration table where guests can comfortably fill in their information and have a volunteer present at all times to help them with the process. This will help to ensure your registration line will maintain a quick and steady flow.
- Train volunteers and reiterate how important it is to get the as much information as possible.
Wrapping up the loose ends at the end of an event can be made easy if you have all your information updated and ready to go. With an up-to-date contact list you’ll find that:
- Thanking donors can be achieved quickly and easily, with less chance of overlooking someone.
- Reporting and analysis will be delivered with speed and accuracy.
- Sending tax information and receipts to donors can be rapidly completed.
- Faster follow-up with your sponsors will prove you are looking out for their interests.
- Donors will be assured their requests for delivery will be met without issues.
- You and your team can create an even more successful event next time with the help of a robust contact database.
Tips for Using Contact Information for the Best Post Event
- Capture as much information as possible prior to the event.
- Verify questionable information through post event correspondence.
- Update your information immediately as you receive clarification.