The massive dance party, happening in Austin on Sunday, March 6, is not only a fun event – it’s also a fundraiser for Dell Children’s Medical Center. The event is a ton of work to put together, but these students don’t mind because they do it all FTK – For The Kids.
Still, we could all learn a thing or two from the Texas THON team – all college undergrads. Luckily, they agreed to share their tips for throwing awesome, successful fundraising events for millennials.
1. Give Millennials What They Want
The Texas THON team hosts events they knows would interest college students – because they are college students.
“When we are thinking about people who don’t know about Texas THON, we focus on getting their attention with food, prizes, entertainment—basically everything all college kids love,” Kristin Sheard, Texas THON Partnership Director, said.
Food. Yep – an emphasis on the food.
“Our biggest fundraiser of every semester is Pancake Night where Texas THON members serve pancakes from 7pm-3am. It’s delirious fun and we raised over $8,500 in one night in the fall!”
Texas THON also works to create engaging events that make any other Sunday night seem..dull.
“The year culminates in our 12-hour no-sitting Dance Marathon at Gregory Gym where all of our registered “Miracle Makers” stand and dance for the kids,” Sheard explains. “We have a choreographed line dance that we perform at the top of each hour.”
2. Social Media Like A College Kid
Retweets, memes, and hashtags aren’t just strategy buzzwords. They are simply a part of life for millennials.
So when it comes to social media promotion, these students have the best ideas
“We know students see ads for organizations and worthy causes every day so we try and make fun and creative graphics and posts that are really eye-catching. A set of memes went viral for pancake night.”
No comment..just ??
3. Promoting IRL Works Too
When deciding how to best promote their upcoming Pancake Night, the THON team didn’t overthink it..Giant pancake! Go!
“For Pancake Night, we have freshmen in our group sign up to wear a pancake costume and go talk to people on campus about coming out to the fundraiser.”
Make your promotional strategy as picture-worthy as a giant pancake, and you’ll be set!
Texas THON takes advantage of its massive student body, by making an effort to engage many different groups.
“We have people from Greek organizations, Spirit Groups, Student Organizations and Residence Halls and on March 6th, they will all come together to dance and raise money for one cause.”
And even though a big school means there are many other fantastic organizations and philanthropy groups out there, Texas THON believes embracing the university culture helps them get more students involved.
“The saying at UT is ‘What starts here, changes the world,’ and Texas THON gives the opportunity for students to show that before they even graduate.”
Texas THON-ers like to have fun – and eat pancakes – but more than anything they want to raise money and awareness for their cause. To do that, they make sure students remember why they’re all here in the first place.
“We try and make a portion of every event cause centric so more people can become FTK and come out to all future events.”
And there’s no better way to remind everyone of your cause, then telling the story of the people you’re helping.
“Everyone’s favorite part of the day is when we have “Miracle Families” from the hospital come to meet the students and share their stories. At the end of the 12 hours, we reveal our final fundraising total for the year and everyone ugly cries happy tears.”
About Texas THON:
Texas THON is a student-run philanthropy sponsored by the Division of Recreation Sports at The University of Texas that raises awareness and funds for the Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals at Dell Children’s Medical Center of Central Texas, right here in Austin. As the largest student-run philanthropy in the state of Texas, we strive to make BIG miracles.
To learn more about Texas THON’s upcoming events, check out their public calendar on Allcal.
A calendar and event scheduling app that will change the way groups organize. The free app lets friends, family, organizations, coworkers, and teams collaborate and coordinate schedules instantly. The app even sends real-time notifications to everyone in the group of any last-minute changes – so every member stays up to date.