Appreciation Amplifies Social Profitability
Make your stewardship as epic as your event!
I participated in the 10th Annual Ride to Conquer Cancer. I trained, raised over $4,000 for the Princess Margaret Cancer Foundation (PMCF) and rode over 200km from Toronto to Niagara Falls. It was an incredible experience from start to finish.
A couple of months ago, Geoff wrote a blog called “Is Peer-to-Peer Fundraising Still Achieving Social Profitability?” He posed the following question: “what are the leading causes and organizations doing right? How are they able to keep participants actively engaged and returning year after year to their signature events?”
While I was riding, I thought a lot about the importance of stewardship. Meaningful stewardship. Stewardship is crucial to ensuring that participants return each year.
For many not-for-profit organizations, the importance of donor and participant stewardship is often an after thought. In today’s social economy, there is increasing competition between these organizations for donor dollars and event participants.
A lack of attention to meaningful stewardship will inherently lead to a decrease in Social Profitability. Supporters want to know that their efforts are appreciated and they want to know that they are making an impact.
PMCF takes meaningful stewardship very seriously. Throughout The Ride to Conquer Cancer experience, PMCF is always looking for ways to further engage participants and show them that they are valued.
They have created a community that recognizes individuals and teams for their fundraising efforts, while actively demonstrating the impact that the dollars raised are making at Princess Margaret Cancer Centre (PMCC). They make participant/donor appreciation as epic, as the event experience itself.
Within the larger Ride community, there are smaller communities that take meaningful stewardship to new heights. Steve’s Cycle Paths, led by Steve Cohen, is a 350+ person team that has raised over $7.6 million for PMCC over the last ten years. The team’s commitment to the Ride and to conquering cancer in our lifetime is infectious.
Steve’s team hosts a special dinner on the Saturday night during the Ride weekend. The entire evening experience is focused on showing appreciation and recognition to the members of their team that have contributed to the success of the Ride and the incredible fundraising goals of the team. Awards, gifts, tributes, shout-outs and an abundance of personal gratitude are used in combination to ensure that every team member leaves with a feeling of accomplishment and importance.
When meaningful stewardship is at the core of an organization, Social Profitability is achievable. It requires time and resources, but in the end… it will be… So Worth It!