Your next nonprofit event producer needs these five skills

July 2021

Is your nonprofit thinking about hiring an event producer to help bring your upcoming fundraiser, conference, or meeting to life?

As you explore your options, it’s crucial to keep in mind that nonprofits have unique needs and goals when it comes to creating a successful event – and not all event producers will know what those are or have the knowledge and skills to achieve them.

We’re here to tell you everything you need to know! As one of the only event agencies in North America working exclusively with nonprofits, the Fluid team knows a thing or two about executing incredible, impactful events for charities.

To help you make the best choice for your organization, we’ve put together a list of the top five skills every nonprofit event producer needs to succeed. And if you want to know more or chat about how we can help, get in touch!

1. Managing a tight budget

For nonprofits, every dollar is a donor dollar – an investment made by an individual, foundation, or company to help advance a cause they believe in.

That means nonprofit budgets are painstakingly hashed out at the start of each new fiscal year, and there’s usually little to no wiggle room.

While corporate event planners may be used to going a little over budget without a problem, event professionals working with nonprofits must be laser-focused on working within the allotted budget – and, where possible, coming in under budget – all while creating an unforgettable guest experience.

2. Knowing how to create a powerful “mission moment”

Whether it’s a fundraising gala or a small celebration of gratitude, every nonprofit event must include a mission moment – a point of time when all attention is focused on the organization’s cause and the impact donors are helping to create.

The goal is to inspire action, to deepen engagement, and to have guests walk away knowing they’re making a difference. And for guests who aren’t already donors, the goal is to make sure they’re at least considering becoming one by the end of the night!

Event pros working with charities should have plenty of experience designing and executing creative, impactful mission moments – like this one produced for True Patriot Love Foundation by the Fluid team last fall.

But mission moments aren’t only about that one special presentation. The most successful nonprofit events offer small mission moments at multiple points throughout the guest experience – a thank you message on a parking pass, banners with powerful impact statements, and so on.

The best nonprofit event producers know exactly how and where to position those smaller moments of inspiration while creating the main event that guests will remember for a long time to come.

3. Understanding the unique technology needs of nonprofit events

Every event, whether in person or virtual, has technology requirements these days. But nonprofit events often have unique tech needs – especially when it comes to fundraising and guest management.

There’s a whole world of technology out there specifically geared to the needs of charities. These range from fundraising technology to mobile bidding apps to check-in software that integrates with an organization’s donor database – and much more.

In the constantly changing landscape of event technology for nonprofits, it’s critical that your event producer is always in the know about the latest trends and opportunities for the best possible results.

4. Ability to create a successful virtual event that keeps guests wanting more  

With a 1,000 percent increase in virtual events since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s likely that almost every event producer has some experience planning a digital gathering at this point.

But for a nonprofit event to succeed online, your event producer must know how to pull on those heartstrings through a screen. That means designing an engaging program, going all-in on storytelling, and creating high-impact multimedia content that drives the message home.

On that last point, it’s also crucial that event professionals are thinking about how investments in multimedia content can be utilized even after the event is done – further extending their return on investment. For example, how can a video be created in such a way that it’s relevant during the event itself and can also be used in donor meetings after the fact?

At Fluid, we are constantly thinking about how to make those donor dollars stretch as far as they can go – a consideration that may not always be at the top of mind for event producers not used to working in the nonprofit space.

5. A unique perspective on volunteer and guest management

For nonprofits, volunteers and guests hold enormous potential to create short and long-term impact through their engagement, donations, and advocacy.

That’s why every individual attending a nonprofit event – whether they’re taking coats or sitting at a premium table – must be treated with the same high level of respect.

Seasoned nonprofit event professionals know it’s crucial that every member of the team is on the same page when it comes to volunteer and guest management. At Fluid, our number one rule is to treat everyone the same – and to treat them like gold.

And it’s not just about good manners: How you treat event attendees can make or break their future involvement with the charity, leading either to more funds raised and greater impact or a reputation in need of management.

Let Us Show You What We’ve Got!

We’ve shared the top five skills event producers need when working with nonprofits, but the list doesn’t end there. There are so many other unique considerations that go into creating a successful event for a charity – no matter what type of event it might be.

If you’re looking for an event producer to help create an unforgettable experience for your guests and achieve your objectives, get in touch with us today!