Multiple studies have found that when people are asked to give a recommended donation at an event, roughly 80% of people will pay that amount without hesitation. A certain percentage of generous individuals will pay even more (especially if you ask them to—more on that later). That figure isn’t static across events though.
Nonprofit fundraiser events often see much higher donation rates than for-profit events (like concerts). The percentage of happy donors also varies based on the amount of your suggested donation. The more you ask for, the fewer will pay.
The key to hitting that “sweet spot” in which the money flows freely is to accurately assess the value of your gathering. To do that, you must distance yourself as the host or promoter and take a hard look at what your event means to attendees. Is it something your guests really want to get into, such as a beer or wine tasting? They may be willing to pay more if they feel they will get more out of it. Is it something they come to out of obligation, like a fundraiser for their child or grandchild’s school? In this case, donations may be lower.
Regardless of what type of event you’re promoting (or to whom you’re promoting it), there are certain things you can do to increase that perceived value and boost the donations you receive.
Raise More Funds With Donations
Ticketstripe offers you the ability to accept a variety of donations, from suggested amounts to PWYW (pay what you wish with admission). This allows you a ton of creative freedom to use donations to raise more funds for your cause, crafting individual messages for each donation. Here are some examples of the different donation types you can mix and match on your Ticketstripe event page and the benefits of using each.
Flexible donations allow the donor to enter a custom donation amount.
Benefit: If customers know there are flexible forms of payment, they’ll be more likely to attend, bring friends, and give more to your cause. When additional donations feel optional vs. obligatory, research suggests people will actually offer what they can.
PWYW (pay what you wish + admission)
PWYW allows the donor to decide how much to donate in exchange for admission to your event, while a minimum price may be set by the organizer.
Benefit: More accessibility, publicity and fundraising. PWYW donation with admission opens the gates of art, music, and diverse culture to your community at large. PWYW donations also help support marginalized groups, allow entrance to school groups and educational classes, and invite more eyes to your event. Greater access and increased publicity inherently bring more donations, but you can also set a minimum required donation to ensure you meet your quota.
Suggested donation amounts are set by you and you can add up to seven per donation.
Benefit: As social creatures, we take comfort in aligning our actions with the people around us. Suggested donations allow patrons to take part with the greater group while still adhering to their available budget.
Donation With Admission
Donation with admission will generate an admission ticket for the donor. Any donation you create can include admission. Admission can be a single type of ticket or multiple types of tickets with various quantities. Check out this brief guide for more info on using this donation type.
Donation tiers are pre-determined suggested levels of giving that donors can choose from. Each tier should include a description of what that donation will accomplish. Keep them short and select tiered levels right for your audience.
Benefit: Donation tiers act as the “best of both worlds,” allowing you to meet your numbers while helping your patrons select a donation that best fits their lifestyle and budget. This selection is best paired with a handful of options, so you don’t paralyze or fluster your audience. Check out this article for more tips on how to create donation tiers.
Never forget that your donations should call out your brand. Take a look at the phrasing you use when writing those descriptions. Is your organization strait-laced? Tongue-in-cheek? A bit rebellious? Use those descriptions to really stimulate your core customer base and show newcomers who you are and what the tone of the event will be. This will help you generate a sense of community around your event or organization, which in turn will encourage giving.
Keep testing. Keep records. Improve your offering every time.