Saturday, February 2, 2013

How Did We Do? Evaluating a Fundraising Event

The questions have been asked and answered.  The prizes have been awarded and auctions won.  The clean up is over and now it is time to reflect...

There are some key questions to think about when reflecting on your event to determine how successful you were and what things you might do differently next time.  One of my friends refers to this reflection as, "even better if," as in the event will be even better next time if...

1.  the obvious first question is did you make your monetary goal?  Any reasons for the fact that you did or did not that are important to note such as weather on the day of the event, unsuccessful marketing of the event, etc.

2.  did you sell out, were all your tables sold and filled?  Did you actually have to turn anyone away?  Was the price appropriate or did anyone balk at the cost?

3.  Did you have a successful auction?  Were there ample items of varying values and were they all sold?  Was check out smooth and were they any problems with check out?

4.  Did everyone have a good time?  You might have (hopefully you did) provide your attendees with an evaluation form to complete before leaving.  What were those results?  Did everyone love a certain round?  Was everyone able to hear/see the questions, etc?

5.  Did staff and volunteers complete their work before and during the event as expected?  Did anyone go above and beyond or did anyone stand around and not work?

6.  Were sponsors happy with the benefits/recognition that they received for their sponsorship dollars?  This is absolutely essential to their willingness to sponsor again in the future.

7.  Did your volunteers "show up" in support of the event, table sales, etc?  Did your staff and/or families also show their support in table sales, spreading the word, etc.

8.  Were your expenses realistic?  Did you seek to have donations for goods/services to lesson your out-of-pocket expenses?  Did you purchase something to make money?  Please don't do that.  Purchasing an item for the auction makes little sense when you will not likely get your cost back much less make a huge profit.  It is an unnecessary expense.

9.  Was there a community response to the event?  Were there table sales representing the community that would be evidence of a good marketing plan carried out well?

10. Did you and your team feel that the time and effort you put into the event was worth the outcome?  Using 400 man hours at $25 per hour, or $10,000, to make $10,000 does not really make sense, either.  Keep your time cost in line with your outcomes.

If you are interested in more information or consulting help for your next event, please contact me at

No comments:

Post a Comment