Fundraising tips | Events

Jocelyn Tribe is a passionate and talented printmaker and a savvy fundraiser, to boot! We asked Jocelyn for her tips on using events as part of the fundraising mix, following her own successful campaign for Cool Change.

Events are a great way to boost donations. Tell us how you incorporated events into your fundraising strategy for Cool Change.

I arranged an evening in which donors and potential donors were invited to come and enjoy evening drinks (sponsored by Mountain Goat) at Magic Johnston in Collingwood, where they could observe a mokuhanga (Japanese woodblock printing) demonstration. There they were given an opportunity to interact and ask questions with me while I made prints and talked them through the process so that they could get a better understanding of the nuts and bolts of my project that was to be supported.

What was your most effective approach, and why do you think it was successful?

Creating an event certainly was a super effective approach as it resulted in people being able to talk about the project in a more intimate way. The fact that there was a conversation opened that was influenced by their direct experience gave the project more context therefore more reason to be supported. I was also able to pick up a significant amount of email addresses that night that were put onto a mailing list. Most donations rolled in toward the end of the campaign after I sent out emails creating the urgency to donate.

What, if anything, would you do differently?

If I could have had more control over refining the project’s website to link back to the campaign I would have definitely have done that. Unfortunately there have been a few limitations with arranging the website as it was being made pro bono at the time.

Did this experience help you better understand your supporters and how you should communicate to them? Can you share some insights with us? 

This has been a great opportunity to get a clear summary of defining Cool Change and how it can work. To get people behind me by communicating it in a way that is palatable for them is very satisfying as it has lead to clarity and been beneficial to the productivity and momentum of the project’s growth.

And finally – what advice would you give to other artists looking to use events as part of their fundraising strategy?

DO IT! I always hear complaints through media about the government spending ‘tax payer dollars’ on the wrong things. This gives people an opportunity to choose what they want to support. I have no doubt creative projects encouraging culture are an investment and something to get people excited about.

More about Jocelyn

Jocelyn Tribe recently returned to Australia after finishing an artist residency in Japan, working in the traditional style of mokuhanga – water-based woodblock printmaking and is now looking to run traditional Japanese woodblock printing workshops in remote community art centres. Jocelyn managed to exceed her ACF fundraising target, raising over $3,000 and enlisting the support of more than 30 donors. Winning!