Fundraisers Leave Printed Ad Journal Behind for Online e-Journal
Mount Sinai Medical Center, The American Liver Foundation, and St. John’s University, are among an increasing list of organizations that have turned to an on-line ad journal to support their fall 2011 events. Fundraising professionals have become more demanding in their expectations and are eschewing the passive paper journal for the dynamic outreach capabilities and added fundraising opportunities of the online e-journal.
As you are likely aware, the ad journal is part of the formula for raising funds with special events, offering sponsors recognition in print and supporters a way to channel their donation dollar while receiving some acknowledgement. However, this tried-and-true fundraising practice may raise money, but is extremely wasteful as event guests quickly flip through the booklets and toss them aside.
In 2002, Long Island businesswoman, Karen Perry, as journal chairperson for a large fundraising event, looked for a better way. Finding none readily available, she drew on her own rich marketing and non-profit experience to develop an original web-based alternative. In consultation with professional fundraisers and event planners, she designed specialty software and a system of on and off-line components that brought the concept to an entirely new level. The resulting EVENTjournal.com system offered benefits and advantages to all involved; the sponsors, the guests, the honorees and the organizations.
Today, Event Journal, Inc. offers fundraisers an interactive, e-journal website with event information, color ads that link to sponsor websites, a photo gallery, embedded video and more. Online, secure registration for purchasing tickets, ads and sponsorships make it easy and interactive for sponsors and more profitable and easier to manage for fundraisers. An available email marketing option adds exposure for the event and drives traffic to the e-journal, where viewers find all they need at their fingertips. The service also includes an elegant e-journal presentation at the event and, if required, companion printed material for a comfortable transition. The company’s full-service approach includes design of all the materials required and implementation and organization of the entire process; supporting non-profits in a time when staffs are traditionally overstretched.
EVENTjournal.com exponentially increases the outreach for the event and the journal, reaching a broader audience for more potential participation. A “Share” feature on each page allows participants to spread word to their own social media networks and the software automatically feeds keywords into search engines for prominent optimization of search terms related to the event. According to Google Analytics, the typical e-journal reaches 5-10 times the viewership than the total attendance at the event! And, with the site live for several months pre-event and a full year post-event, the organization, its honorees and its sponsors receive goodwill far beyond the shelf life of the printed book.
Each year since the company’s inception, revenues have increased, as a growing group of nonprofits embraced the idea and renewed annually. In 2010-2011, the company has experienced record growth, as “going green” has become an imperative, and organizations are hard-pressed to be creative and to offer more in a difficult economy.