Five metrics that will improve your event fundraising

Peer to Peer Fundraising Best Practices July 20, 2017 By Kevin Wolfe

At DonorDrive, we’re often asked what data can be used to improve the success of a peer-to-peer event between launch of registration and event day. We’ve boiled it down to the five most important metrics you can track during event fundraising to boost revenue:

  1. Retain your participants
  2. Break down your revenue
  3. Minimize zero-dollar fundraisers
  4. Motivate your under-performing participants
  5. Motivate your under-performing team captains

1) Retain your participants

Getting past participants to come back this year is hugely important to event revenue. DonorDrive data shows returning participants raise 2.5 times more than new participants. So for every 10 participants you lose, you need to recruit 25 new ones to make up the dollars. After kickoff for this year’s event, segment out who participated last year, but haven’t signed up yet. Send out a survey to find out why and segment further based on their responses:

  • “I have a prior commitment.” Encourage those who have something else going on that day to register as a virtual fundraiser. It keeps them actively involved so they're more likely to be there next year.
  • “I’ve moved out of the area.” Again, ask these people to register as a virtual fundraiser. Point out it’s a great opportunity to keep in touch.
  • “I didn’t like the event last year.” If they aren’t back because they didn’t feel the love at last year’s event, send them a list of ways you’ve improved this year’s event to make it a better experience for them.

Also, pull a report and identify the top 10% of non-returning fundraisers. Send a personal email or call them to ask them back, since their absence means a substantial loss to this year’s revenue.

2) Break down your revenue

Once fundraising for your event begins, compare where dollars were at this time last year. Segment by participants, teams, registration fees, etc. Peaks and valleys in a timeline can show the impact of recent outreach efforts and can influence your event marketing decisions. Spot trends so you can do a push at the most popular times when people register and donate to your event.

3) Minimize zero-dollar fundraisers

Zero-dollar fundraisers can be a huge drain on your event, but with a little encouragement, you can get them through their fundraising fears or get them over their inertia. Two weeks after the start of registration, pull numbers to see who hasn’t received a donation yet. Focus coaching emails to this group on simple things they can do to get their first donation, like sending an email or posting about their participation on social media. Just landing that first donation is often all that’s needed to get these participants fundraising.

4) Motivate your under-performing participants

One month after registration, determine which fundraisers haven’t reached their goal yet. Send those less than halfway to their goal a message that includes a pep talk about how important their fundraising is to your event. Let those more than halfway to their goal know how close they are to achieving success. Check back each week to see which of these participants have passed their goal. Send the successful a congratulatory email, as well as suggest they raise their goal.

5) Motivate your under-performing team captains

DonorDrive stats show teams raise ten times more than the average individual participant. Keep track of your teams to make sure your team captains are doing their part in recruiting new members and encouraging them to fundraise. By looking at trends of your most successful teams in past years, you can develop benchmarks teams should be hitting, like dollars raised and participants recruited. Then message the under-performing captains to get them on track.

While event post-mortem data can be valuable in understanding the overall success of your event, these five metrics can help you drive the success of your event.