Pivoting from in-person events to a virtual or even hybrid format can feel intimidating, but our team is here to help.
Together, we can reach your audience where they are, while continuing to meet and exceed your fundraising goals.
Premier has been a leader in creating and producing highly-successful virtual events from the outset of the COVID pandemic. Known for our management of first-class live events for over 25 years, we quickly developed an innovative virtual platform, branded as “The BreakThrough,” to provide non-profit organizations with a timely, relevant and compelling platform to engage with major donors and communicate a strategic message when in-person meetings and events are not feasible. The results have been extraordinary. Premier-led events have generated astounding ROI’s for organizations of all sizes. Several of the virtual events have raised seven-figure financial commitments.
So how does it work? We IMMERSE ourselves into your organization and brand, building a thorough understanding of your mission, culture and vision, which enables us to become a highly-valued partner and advocate. We INSPIRE creative thinking, helping unpack the “world of the possible” and then developing the best strategy and game-plan to achieve game-changing outcomes. We IGNITE your organization’s sphere of influence – your leadership, your staff, your key partners, your audience – by executing the plan with precision and excellence. Through this approach, we provide the guidance and tools to help you expand ministry and fulfill vision.
This is why we do what we do.
Our platform is more than a zoom conference, more than a webinar, more than Facebook Live…it is an innovative way to create a tangible experience for key partners that can include a fundraising component. The final product is similar to a live produced and directed TV show, done professionally, using modern technology. It includes high-quality video playback and a customized graphics package to tie all branding and messaging together to ensure a clean and professional end-user experience.
Plus, we bring a professional team behind the technology platform that knows how to create, produce and present compelling programming and messaging that inspires the audience. Our expertise, attention to detail, demand for excellence and ability to transfer your organization’s goals into a flawless final product is what ultimately makes the biggest difference.
So how do you take a virtual event from just an idea on paper to a live event that generates impact? Well, that’s where our team steps in. In our initial meetings we work alongside you and your team to develop the strategy and game plan – starting with understanding who your audience is, what the goals are, what fundraising platforms and communication systems you already have in place and have seen success with, and more.
From there we put together a tentative roster of key players for the event and begin to construct the run-of-show. Once that has been discussed and finalized, we then work with your team to get scripts written, event graphics and support creative executed and approved, tech-checks scheduled to ensure each member utilizes their best possible audio and visual setups, and finalize rehearsals and any necessary recording schedules.
We recently produced and executed a virtual event of our own to discuss how organizations can add a virtual component to their donor development strategies in 2021 and beyond. To open that event, we put together a brief video explaining how and why we were inspired to develop “The BreakThrough”:
Now that virtual events are proven to be a highly-effective tool for organizations to engage their key financial partners, it’s time to look ahead on what the future holds. During the informational virtual event hosted by Premier, we answered five major questions and below are some excerpts:
• Accessibility – “People are more accessible, virtually. Especially in terms of your target audience, major donors are very busy individuals and getting their time can be really tough. And we’ve learned that we have a much better success rate getting them virtually, than we do getting them to go somewhere.”
• Affordability + ROI – “Virtual events work for any size of organization because they cost a fraction of what an in-person event would. Additionally, we’ve found the ROI to be extraordinarily good and have even seen 7-figure results from a very small investment. What organization wouldn’t be excited for that?”
• Timeliness – “Having the ability to respond to time-sensitive situations and ministry opportunities is a huge takeaway, as we’re able to pull together a virtual event within oftentimes less than 60 days, whereas in-person events take months or a year plus.”
• Messaging – “With this platform we have a financially efficient way of connecting passionately with donors, without making them get on a plane, have them drive somewhere or even go downtown for a banquet. We have these viewers for a very short period of time, so how do we get that message across in a clear and concise way? Well we’ve learned that the story has to be compelling and can’t get distracted with side issues – share the vision and stories in just moments and minutes, versus taking hours to tell the same story.”
• First-class production – “It takes a commitment to making sure that you produce a high-quality, inspiring experience that will really capture a donor’s attention. This is not a Zoom call – rather, it’s a fully produced, strategically executed event.”
• Campaign – “You have to have the mindset that this is a campaign. It’s really not just a single event – building a pre- and post-event fundraising strategy and how you interact with your donors, you utilize this event as the marquee moment. At the conclusion of your event, it’s then imperative for you and your team to use the content and tools that you have to make sure you maximize those results.”
• Clear call-to-action – “Not only do donors have to be inspired, but they have to be presented with a very clear and specific call-to-action. It’s important to explain what the goals are and then show them how it can be achieved. So what’s the best way to accomplish that? Well, you have to get specific – don’t speak generally or try to unpack the entire mission of your organization. Instead be compelling, have a sense of urgency and help donors understand what the “one thing” is that they can do right now to really make an impact.”
• Here to stay – “More than anything else we’ve seen in our world, companies, organizations and leaders all around the world have quickly adapted to how the virtual realm can save money, time and the efficiency in how we conduct business. So it’s easy to say that significant elements of the virtual world are here to stay – but it’s also been incredible to see how effective it can be to engage with donors, tell your story and generate gifts through virtual as well.”
• Flexibility – “The virtual space opens doors of opportunity for organizations to choose dates and times that really work for their audience. We’ve seen events range from weekdays, weekends, daytime to prime time – and it all goes back to the idea that people are more accessible virtually right now, than ever before. And these virtual events give space to engage with donors where they are, when it’s most convenient.”
• Experiences – “Another key element to a successful virtual event, is to create a genuine experience for your donors. By developing something the donor finds memorable, you’re creating a place for them to lean in and have that emotive type of response, which entices them to want to engage with your organization in the future.”
• No short-term solutions here – “We have to see this as a new opportunity in a new world that we’re living in, not just a short-term solution to the pandemic. Virtual events provide a unique ability to increase our frequency of donor engagement and the flexibility of that, allowing key moments to reach various donor levels and utilizing custom messaging.”
• Creative solutions – “The virtual space really opens up the world of the possible for creativity. We’re able to do new things that otherwise would be either financially or logistically difficult – such as global interaction with key field representatives, hosting high profile personalities, musical performances and more. These are all entertainment factors that can be achieved at a fraction of the time and money necessary for an in-person event, but allow your donors to have a unique experience in a virtual setting.”
• Let’s keep it simple, no – “After everything we’ve learned, there are several factors that would make you think virtual should replace in-person events, but the reality is that’s just not the case. There will always be value in face-to-face relationship building. We all want in-person events to get back as soon as possible; however, virtual experiences are an incredible and complementary tool that are allowing us to engage donors consistently and in unique ways. They are cost-effective, you can dial them up with a shortened timeline and if you’re an organization that is nimble and can pivot quickly, you’re going to get some great messaging and achieve some astounding results.”
You can watch the full replay of our event below:
Take a look at some of the organizations we’ve partnered with this last year – engaging with their donors through a virtual event and generating gifts for their missions.
“True to form, the production was excellent and the response was greatly encouraging. We actually reached a larger group of donors, with the Fellowship of Christian Athletes story and investment opportunity, than we would have with a traditional event.”
– Tim Johnson, Vice President
“We learned so much about the complexities of virtual fundraising, recognizing the value of this dynamic platform in unique circumstances. As a result of Premier’s guidance, our first virtual event was a huge success.”
– Susan Olguin, Vice President
“Premier exceeded our expectations in every way. The BreakThrough event was not only successful, what they taught us has accelerated our overall donor development program in significant ways.”
– Ray Williams, Team Leader
“If you had told me a month ago that we would raise over a million dollars on a virtual event, I would have been jumping for joy. What an amazing response. We are excited about these funds being put to use immediately.”
– Jonathan Barratt, Executive Director
“The Premier team was essential in the tremendous success with our major donor fundraising virtual event. They did a lot of the heavy lifting and the result was a huge ROI. I highly recommend them.”
– Jeremy Reis, Sr. Director of Marketing
“Premier made a complex production simple, user friendly and engaging for our audience. They handled all the technology meaning our team could focus on what we do best: telling compelling stories that inspire donors to give. ”
– Jacquelyn Cork, Executive Director
“The Premier team provided great leadership in designing and executing our virtual event. They helped us build our case and create the plan to share a compelling story to our donors – and that’s what got us a seven-figure gift.”
– Jason Yates, CEO