13 October 2020
How The Funding Network adapted live crowdfunding events to a virtual format in a pandemic…and what we learned
Back in June, we spoke to F&P about The Funding Network’s pivot to virtual events in the face of COVID-19 restrictions. At the time, we had successfully delivered two events online, dipping our toe in the virtual world, determined to keep the fundraising wheels turning at a time when the sector needed us more than ever.
This was a completely new approach for us. As Australia’s largest collective giving model, TFN’s crowdfunding events have facilitated over $14 million for more than 340 non-profit programs. Our engaging ‘pitch and pledge’ style format gives grassroots nonprofits the skills and opportunity to share their stories, impact and present a case for their deserving programs. The audience then pledges their financial support, which is usually matched by our generous corporate partners.
Once the pandemic hit, we decided to jump in headfirst to understand whether our model could still thrive if the in-person experience was replaced by a virtual one.
Since the initial success of those first two virtual events, TFN has gone on to deliver another five events, raising a remarkable $1.1 million in around 10 hours of online live crowdfunding. Working with clients including Wayside Chapel, Habitat for Humanity and Sage, we have been fortunate to help them deliver their own virtual events, to engage their supporters during this tumultuous time.
The success of TFN virtual has led us to rethink how we may deliver a virtual/live hybrid model once restrictions have eased. This year truly has been one of experimentation, tweaking, tailoring and a few prayers.