Nonprofit Newsletter: Onsite Tips & Tricks

May 17, 2023

Welcome back to the Corinthian Events Nonprofit Newsletter!

If you ask our planners what events they are planning this spring, chances are that one of them is a nonprofit gala. A big part of our business at Corinthian Events is comprised of the various nonprofit clients we work with each year.

Nonprofit gala season is in full swing and we’re taking you along with us. For our second installment of the Nonprofit Newsletter, our team shares their biggest tips and tricks for ensuring a nonprofit event runs smoothly once you arrive onsite!

Make a Good First Impression
It is crucial for guests to have a seamless Registration process at your event as this is the first thing they experience upon arrival! Ensure that you have enough staff for the expected volume of guests to avoid long lines. It is also important to consider what attendees are handed upon arrival. Are you distributing event programs and auction numbers along with their name badge? Make sure it is feasible that guests can hold everything and still enjoy cocktail hour.

Prepare Technology in Advance
To avoid any technical difficulties on event day, make sure your AV team has all program content downloaded beforehand. Large video files can be tricky to load using the venue’s Wi-Fi! Additionally, if you are using mobile bidding or other technology to fundraise at the event, have a backup plan. If technology fails, you still need a way to record bids! It may be helpful to have a representative from the fundraising platform on-site during the event.

Build Yourself a Great Team
You can’t produce an amazing event without a fantastic team! Ensure that you have an adequate number of staff to handle all logistical elements of the event so that the client can focus on the program and their guests. Have a plan for each of your staff and review their assigned roles before stepping on site, so everyone knows your expectations. You also can not produce a successful nonprofit event without volunteers! Work with the client to make sure there are enough volunteers in the room during the program to survey the audience and record bids. Enthusiastic volunteers are crucial for successful fundraising at your event.

A Production Schedule is Your Best Friend
It never hurts to be extra prepared! Have a detailed schedule of the event day so that all staff and vendors know what is happening and when. Think through the load-in and breakdown of your event and include all details here as well. This will help establish a clear plan of communication and allow everyone onsite to navigate the day efficiently.

Directional Signage is a Must
Guests will not have a positive event experience if they can’t find their way around the venue! Visualize yourself as an attendee who has never been to the event space before and plan to create ample directional signage wherever needed. At nonprofit events, it is also important to list bidding and Wi-Fi information somewhere guests can easily read. We like to display silent auction items on large mightee mount signs at events, which is a great way for guests to view everything up close!

Practice Makes Perfect
Schedule a rehearsal prior to the event that all speakers and the AV team can attend. Rehearsing the program will make presenters more comfortable speaking on stage and better familiarize everyone with the Run of Show. Dedicating time to rehearse will help lower the risk of technical error and help create a seamless and engaging program once guests are in their seats!

Photo Credit: Maura Wayman Photography and Matt Teuten Photography


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