One of the beauties of hosting a live or virtual event is the opportunity to raise money for causes you care about while making money and a difference with your great work.
I started doing this myself several years ago, and what began as an experiment has become a cherished business practice. We now choose a beneficiary for each of our live events, and to date have raised more than $600,000 for organizations that are doing everything from empowering at-risk women and girls in Africa to facial reconstruction for children in the U.S. We’ve also sponsored super-fun and empowering cancer camps for women and teens in the summer, and dental clinics for children in Cambodia. As you can imagine, it’s super rewarding and nurturing to my soul.
From that very first fundraising experiment, I discovered the magic of what we now call “Lift as You Climb.” I first heard it described this way from my friends Sandra and Kym Yancey who founded eWomen Network.
While it wasn’t our motivation, we found that there was a direct, positive correlation between the money we were raising for our beneficiaries and how well our company did at our own events. You see, if you give your attendees the opportunity to give and open the flow in their lives, they get more at your event because they tend to let more flow in. And when their static pond turns into a flowing river, not only do they get more, but guess what? They become open to giving themselves more and, in some cases, it opens them up to gift themselves with more of your mentorship.
If you would like to use your reach at your next live or virtual event to raise money for an organization or cause you care about, keep these three tips in mind:
1. Invite the founder of the benefiting organization to attend your entire event.
We have found that we raise more money for the cause if the founder, versus a general manager or other representative, is present, and if he or she is there for the entire event. In our case, we’re giving the organization a golden opportunity to receive donations totaling $60,000 to $120,000, but our entrepreneurial audiences need to witness the passion and devotion of the entrepreneurial founder over the entire three days of our live events to make that happen in the best way possible.
2. Decide in advance how much you will donate.
In advance of your event, decide how much you intend to donate or tithe yourself as well as the amount of any matching funds you intend to make. That way, you can double your own contribution—and your attendees’—in creative ways. For instance, while we absolutely will give attendees back their no-show deposit as we promised, we also give them a coupon that says, “Hey, you can donate your no-show deposit to our beneficiary, and Lisa will match you. So, you give $97, and it’s like donating $200.”
3. Let the beneficiary run the funds directly.
If you make an offer at your live event or workshop to work with you further, you are going to have enough to do with your new coaching or mastermind clients. You don’t want to do the actual processing and collection of the donated funds and then try to get them to the beneficiary. At our live events, we design and print the beneficiary order forms in double-NCR, collect the filled-out forms, and then give the beneficiary the top white copy, while keeping the yellow copy ourselves. That way they’ve got a record of everybody who donated and can process the donations right away, and we have a copy so that we can deliver any “Lift as You Climb” bonuses we offered to the donor.
There’s no question that using your live or virtual event as a fundraising vehicle is a win-win-win—for you, your clients, and your beneficiary’s awesome work in the world.
If you’d like to take the next step and have a solid game plan for designing, filling and monetizing your next live training event, workshop, or seminar, join us TODAY at 5 p.m. Pacific/8 p.m. Eastern for the encore of my brand-new webinar “How To Fill Your Own High-End Coaching, Mastermind, Mentorship or Certification Program and Quickly Secure a Year’s Worth of Income and Awesome Clients!”
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