Virtual Event Management: The Importance of The “Know Before You Go” Document
As we all continue to push forward into the final few months of what’s been one of the most uncertain years in recent history, our mission at AmFund remains firmly in place: To help nonprofit organizations raise much needed funds to support their valuable causes. With our mission in mind, we continue to use this blog as a means of sharing our knowledge and experience. Today’s blog entry is here to help you improve your virtual event with the aid of the “Know Before You Go” document (don’t worry, we will explain exactly what that is later on).
Making Ongoing Improvements to Your Virtual Events
If you have been following our blog lately, you will notice that virtual event management has been the theme of many of our recent entries. Creative virtual event ideas, marketing initiatives, and sponsor engagement tips were just a few of the virtual event topics that we covered in the last few months or so. With COVID-19 still front and center in all of our lives across the country, the virtual event is the most important initiative for nonprofit organizations to carry out in 2020. For this reason, we will continue to deliver content that will help you think strategically about the execution of your virtual events.
What Is The “Know Before You Go” All About?
A successful virtual event is well-organized with open communication between the nonprofit organization and its patrons. Keep in mind, virtual events come in all different varieties. This is why it’s so important to deliver detailed instructions to your guests ahead of time to remove any uncertainties about how the event will operate. This is where the “Know Before You Go” document comes into play.
The “Know Before You Go” document is a clear set of instructions that nonprofit organizations should publish to their audience before the virtual event. With that said, let’s break down some of the key pieces of information that should be included in this document. Check them out here:
● First and foremost, display the title and date of your event.
● Include your website where guests can register.
● Mention any information that is needed to register (cell phone, email, etc.).
● Include any instructions that will help guests navigate your auction. This would be how to bid, save favorite items, buy now, etc.
● Include a detailed schedule of the times for the event. Be sure to mention each step of the event. For example, if you are having a virtual cocktail hour, silent auction, or a live speaker, put in the start and finish time for each section of your program.
● Remind your guests to bid! Include the closing time for bids as well.
● Remind everyone to share the registration link with friends and family on social media.
● Don’t forget to put your contact information at the bottom of this document. Leave a phone number and email address for those who need to reach out with questions and concerns.
Keep Communication in Mind
We’ll wrap things up with a quick reminder about the importance of communication — something that we just can’t stress enough. It was mentioned earlier in this blog, but it’s essential to say it again: don’t leave your guests guessing! Remove any uncertainties by providing them with a clear set of instructions on what links to click, when to click them, how to bid, the length of time for each section of your event, etc. All of these components should be laid out in your “Know Before You Go” document. Again, the idea here is that the document will provide your guests with a clear and concise framework of how the event will be delivered before it even starts.
In preparation for your event, don't forget to have a look at the Know Before You Go Video.
Like so many organizations this year, AmFund found the need to pivot. We normally attend our nonprofit partners' in-person events and provide incredible trips of a lifetime for their live and silent auctions through our Fundraising Travel Program. Organizations found themselves having to cancel and reschedule events resulting in a need to find other mechanisms for fundraising. Borne out of that need, we created the AmFund VIP Virtual Program. We expanded this program to include an exciting new opportunity for our approved nonprofit partners, with our own electronic bidding platform. The result, a secure and aesthetically pleasing platform allowing organizations to conduct their auctions, provide a place for organizations’ to appeal to their patrons with an open ask, as well as view a live stream of their virtual event, all in one place. For more information to find out if you qualify for our AmFund VIP Program contact us today.