The biggest factor of any event are the attendees, without them the event wouldn’t exist! They affect the style, timing, food, feel and even goal of the event.
One demographic of attendees that is starting to change the landscape of events are the millennials. According to The Millennial Impact Report, millennials are contributing $300 billion of annual spending and by the year 2020, they will make up 50% of the work force. Finding ways to successfully engage the millennial generation is imperative in our world today. Within the conducted five year research, The Millennial Impact study found six recurring trends among millennials that shed light on the how and why they get involved with an organization:
- Millennials give modestly to multiple causes in early engagement.
- Millennials learn about and donate to causes digitally, using each platform distinctly.
- Peers are a critical influence on millennial giving.
- Millennials want to use and develop their skills through giving.
- Among millennials, women give more money than men, larger donations correlate with
higher total volunteer hours.
- Millennials get involved based on intrinsic motivation.
So how does that affect events? Here are some trends that we are seeing in the event industry and suggestions for raising more funds by attracting millennials to your event:
Keeping ticket prices down. Millennials are not seeking out opportunities to spend $250 for a gala ticket, but would probably be interested in a Thursday night happy hour social to support a new cause for a modest price point of $30. By moving your event’s time and day around: weekday vs. weekend or lunch vs. evening event, you can cut out unnecessary upcharges on rentals and food.
Promoting the event through multiple social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat and Google+. Facebook is still the number one platform for millennials, so be sure to engage them by creating an event on Facebook that links to a way to purchase tickets. But don’t stop there, promote early and often using the other platforms to expand your audience.
Leveraging team captains. The Benevon model is a very trendy way to host events. A signature Benevon event is an hour long event that is free to attend. They leverage table ambassadors to fill their own table with their peers with the hopes after hearing the mission they will be compelled to give.
Young Professional Board run events are seeing big returns. Millennials are interested in gaining work experience and participating on a young professionals board is a great way to do that. Engaging the group to fundraise by planning an event often creates new connections to corporate sponsors as well as talented upcoming vendors. And what better way to have a millennial turnout than by having millennials plan it!
Boys just want to have fun, too! Millennial females currently are more engaged and likely to donate compared to their male counterparts, so that means there is growth potential to attract males to your event. Beer and “activity” events, like Whirlyball, Frisbee Golf, and Bags tournaments are all great examples of events that see a more balanced gender turnout.
Celebrate individuals and special communities! Millennials love recognition, so why not give it to them! Recognize or honor individuals who are dedicated to nonprofit or business by posting about them on social media and at events. It will make them feel good and it will encourage their network to be engaged. Come up with a catchy name for the community so members feel connected and special, too.
We love watching events evolve and adapt to the changes in our connected world. If you’re looking for insights and ideas, we would be happy to help!