How to put on your own Fundraising Concert
Updated: Mar 15
Our music missionaries usually follow one of the two options below: 1. They pay for their own music mission trip 2. They raise their funds
For some it’s a combination of the two.
If you are paying for your own trip, you will not need the information below. But, if you have to raise your funds, we would like to equip you with a way of raising funds that several of our music missionaries have had great success with . . .
A FUNDRAISING CONCERT!
WHY DO A FUNDRAISING CONCERT?
This is an effective and fun way of raising funds doing what you already do. Not only will you raise money, but you will also allow people to hear about your upcoming music mission trip and give them the opportunity to become a part of international mission work financially and through prayer. Even those who may not have a chance to be at your concert may hear about it while you are planning for it or they may hear about it from someone that were at the concert, and may still want to support you in your music mission endeavors. Your supporters will then likely to want to hear about the trip when you get back; which might make them enthusiastic about what they have been a part of, and might generate a desire to extend their support/partnership to future missions.
WHEN TO DO THE CONCERT
We suggest you do it as early as possible, so that you will know what the status is early on. That way you will know if you need to continue fundraising or if you raised enough. However, give yourself enough time to plan and prepare the concert as well.
Our deadlines for payments are generally (unless otherwise agreed upon with GTM due to a short planning period): $200 per person is due as you confirm the trip The plane ticket is due 3 months prior to the trip
The remaining balance is due 1 month prior to the trip.
If you plan the concert early enough, some may give what they have to give while at the concert, while also giving them time to come up with even more to give before your final deadline. And some who did not have any money to give at the time of the concert, may have been motivated at the concert to set aside some money to give you later.
Bottomline: if you do the concert early enough, you will possibly encounter these great benefits. But, you will not give people that same opportunity if you do the concert shortly before your deadlines.
HOW TO MARKET THE CONCERT
You should try to get as many people to the concert as possible, and of course as many of your closest friends and family as possible (they are likely to become your biggest supporters).
Here are some suggestions to get a good size crowd:
Invite several of your musician/artist friends to perform in addition to you. They will again bring their friends/fans. You can even bring in the church choir to perform or other large groups;) Make sure you ask them to perform for free though as it is a fundraiser.
Create a poster/flyer for the concert. You can use that both for social media and to print up and hand out or hang at your church, neighborhood etc. If you don’t know how to make a nice poster/flyer, and do not have any friends that will help you with that; we recommend fiverr.com This is a website where you can have someone create your flyer/poster for $5.
Use any local channel and network you can to get the word out, such as church bulletin/ website, church information during the services, create a facebook event, push it through social media, even through local radio/TV/newspaper if you have the contacts. Be creative.
Create content for marketing/social media that is creative and engaging.
Make sure you remind them about the event. You may not get away with telling them once.
Start marketing the event a minimum of two weeks prior to the event, so that people are not already booked for that night.
Try to avoid booking your event on the same night as something else big is going on.
HOW TO RAISE FUNDS DURING THE CONCERT
Some may want to charge ticket money; and in some cases that might be a good idea. However, we think it would be great to get as many people to the event as possible and to therefore make it a free event and instead raise money during the concert.
Here are some ways you can do that:
Sell food (you can sell meals, coffee, soft drinks, cakes and snacks of all kinds etc). You maybe able to get friends and volunteers to cook & bake.
Sell merchandize if you have any
Do a drawing (in Europe they raise a lot of money to missions this way, but in the USA some churches do not like this; so make sure you find out what the policy is in your church on this)
You can do a live streaming of the concert (such as Facebook Live), and post the information on how to give there. This will allow those not able to be present at the concert to be a part of giving as well.
You may come up with even more creative ways to maximize your fundraising at the concert. There are also plenty of great and fun suggestions available online.
Reality is; some people will give you as much as they can because they are truly excited about what you are doing. However, some people will not necessarily care a lot about that, but they still want to buy food & snacks, possibly merchandize, and if there’s a way they can win something...they might be all on board.
HOW TO GET THEM EXCITED TO SUPPORT
It is important that you take time during the event not just to invite them to give; but to actually get them excited about the mission. We suggest that you not only share just a short piece of information before the offering, but that you deliberately share various bits and pieces throughout the evening between the sets/songs. You should personally say something on this, but you can also invite others to speak who might encourage the people there to give (possibly a pastor, mission pastor, a church/community leader, one of the other artists, representative from GTM etc).
You should tell them why you are doing this as well as a little bit about what you will be doing on the music mission trip and how that may affect the people there. If you have been on a trip before; you could share about that too.
We suggest you also share about GTM, so that they understand who the sending organization is. A way you can do that, is to show our promo video: https://www.youtube.com/ watch?v=nUdcSvTxzUM&feature=youtu.be
Invite them to join this mission and take part in the great commission alongside you. They should know that even if you are the one going, you are all in this together; this is not a solo project. Let them know that this mission includes ALL OF YOU, each one doing what they can do to fulfill this mission collectively.
Point to Jesus and allow Him to be the center of this concert; even more than the mission itself. Because He truly is the reason why we even do this. An added bonus is that most believers will give because they love the Lord, and therefore they love others too and will want to give to mission work. Some people will give for other reasons; but in most cases your most faithful and generous supporters will be those who are truly committed to Christ. Also, you want people to give eagerly, willingly and cheerfully (as you can read about in 2.Corinthians 8-9), in response to their love for Jesus and people, and not because we put pressure on or guilt anyone into giving.
MAKE IT EASY FOR THEM TO GIVE
Not a lot of people carry cash these days. So, we shouldn’t let what they have in cash limit their giving.
Make sure you have enough ways for them to give (or to purchase food and merchandize etc). A lot of people will use the Square Cash app, Venmo, PayPal etc. So, if you can make all or some of those (or other popular apps) available to them, that would be great.
GTM uses Square Cash and PayPal, so if you don’t have that, we will provide those options for you.
You could also get a Square app (or others similar) for them to pay on site with a debit/credit card.
You should also let them know that they are able to use checks.
We will give you your own online donation page that people can go to and give (through their bank account and debit/credit cards). This is a page you can use before and after the concert through your social media.
You can post a video on this site as well.
Please note that GTM Ministries is a non-profit organization with a 501c3 status, so gifts that are sent DIRECTLY through GTM are tax deductible.
GET YOUR CHURCH INVOLVED
If you can get your church involved in this; there are some bonuses to that. First, they may be excited that someone from their church is doing international mission work. For some churches this is very common, but for other churches; they may not have any mission partnerships and this is a great opportunity for them to get involved.
They may be able to offer the following:
That you can use the church for your concert for free (with all the equipment etc)
They may announce/market the concert through their channels
They may be able to offer volunteers for the concert
They may be able to help you print up material, decorations, plates/cups ++ in connections with serving food and more
Perhaps the church will even give some money toward your trip
WHAT IS A LIKELY AMOUNT THAT YOU WILL RAISE AT A CONCERT?
This depends a lot at what size group will be at your concert, what kind of money is available in your network, and also how invested each of them are in being a part of mission work, etc. Some people can raise most or all of their money in one concert, and others will raise a few hundred dollars; which will of course be a good start.
It will also depend some on how well you plan for this concert, and whether or not your will be able to eliminate all or most expenses in connection with the concert.
WILL THIS NOT BE A LOT OF WORK?
This may seem like a lot of work, but it will most likely be a very nice and memorable evening; where you will be able to have a lot of fun, focus on Him and His work, and to enjoy some fellowship and great music together with people that are there to support you!
If you are not the type to organize, you should know that there are many people out there that absolutely LOVE doing these kinds of things and would be very excited about the opportunity. So, it can be worth asking them:) It is a way for them to contribute their gifts in mission work as well.
GENERAL FUNDRAISING TIPS FROM OUR MUSIC MISSIONARIES:
“As soon as missionaries know when and where their assignment will be, fundraising should begin immediately”
“Estimate as accurately as possible the funds needed to make the trip - the MMT Cost, airfare and incidental money (in case of flight delays, cancellations, need to spend additional night(s) in hotel - most of this which you can get back on your travel insurance after the trip). Regarding incidental monies, I suggest between $500 - $1000. If this money is not used, it can be saved and used for: an upcoming missions trip, or donating some or all of it to GTM to help other missionaries”
“Contact potential supporters by all means legal and available: cell phone contacts, Facebook Messenger, Fundraising page (GTM will provide you with one), and as always good old- fashioned letter writing to friends and associates. If possible, make a personal live presentation to a church or group and solicit their support. Tell the people about GTM and as much as possible about the mission assignment (what people groups will be served - eg., school students, churches, prisons, community choirs, etc.)”
“Provide as much information as possible in the fundraising appeal. I have found that breaking the total estimated cost of the trip to small amounts (e.g., 300 people sharing $10) works very well; oftentimes the donors will give more that what is requested. Give a definite cut-off for donations when raising the MMT Cost and airfare - especially airfare because ticket prices change so quickly; plus the earlier they are purchased, the better the chance of getting a really good ticket price. Incidental funds can be received right up until departure time (having some currency of the place you will be serving is also a good thing).”