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Did you miss the World’s Largest Porch Party? Watch this recap of some of the fun activities that took place this year.

In the video above, we were celebrating the grand opening of a wonderful new building for The ArtsCenter in Carrboro, NC.

The ArtsCenter is a beloved community gathering space, and we’re honored to be guiding their capital campaign. 

Saturday was really hot here in North Carolina so this porch party ended up mostly indoors! 

I had such fun, live streaming from our event. This video shares some of the highlights!

It’s fabulous that so many organizations have jumped on this summer’s Porch Party bandwagon. 

It’s been a season of friendmaking, donor engagement, reaching out to new supporters, and generally having some fun! 

If you are staging a friendmaking Porch Party, don’t forget to check out our resource center.

Thanks to everyone who participated!

If your organization is planning a capital campaign or expanding your major gifts program – we can help. Email coaching@gailperry.com if you’d like to schedule a free strategy call with us.

Have you ever considered the power of a Porch Party?

This summer, you can lighten things up while you make new friends for your cause.

Here are five reasons you and your team might want to hold a friendmaking event this summer:

Remember, the Friendmaking Motto is “Make Friends First.”

When you engage potential donors, and make friends with them before you ask, then you can move from a transactional relationship with the donors into a deeper mission-based relationship.

That’s why friendmaking events are simply good fundraising. Donors want to be noticed, and they want to be heard.

Reaching out to engage them, to invite them over, asking them to bring friends – all of these somewhat social activities can lay powerful groundwork for successful fundraising.

Bottom Line: Join the Friendmaking Movement!

Help us to have the Worlds Largest Porch Party on August 26th.

Board members can play important roles at donor engagement social events like Porch Parties. 

We think that these no-ask Porch Party Friendmaking Events are a wonderful way for board members to help expand your organization’s reputation and its network of contacts.

Today, I’m sharing several important roles that board members can play to help make your next Porch Party wildly successful. 

Remember, board members can be very powerful when they help in fundraising and friend-making. 

Because they are considered the highest legal authorities of your organization, many friends, donors and supporters appreciate the opportunity to engage with them. 

Donors feel honored when a board member pays attention to them. 

Even more, when you really start to think about it, your board members are only serving because they care about your organization and its work. This is why they command so much respect within your community. 

Bottom Line on Porch Party Friendmaking Events:

That’s why when board members engage in friend-making, donor cultivation, and/or stewardship – they can be extremely powerful. 

Donors take note. And they appreciate it too.

Porch Party Power: Feedback and Key Takeaways from the Porch Party Webinar

There was lots of enthusiasm at our Porch Party webinar yesterday. Thanks to all our readers who took the time out of their busy schedules to join and get inspired.

Beth Ann Locke and I shared our formula for an easy friendmaking social event designed to open doors to key donors and create new friends and supporters for your cause.

At the Porch Party webinar, we discussed the “why” of these types of parties and how they can positively impact donor engagement and retention. And how Porch Parties and small, intimate events can boost relationships and fundraising.

But don’t take it from me – hear what the attendees shared in yesterday’s lively chat stream!

Porch Party Webinar: Highlights and Key Takeaways!

From Denise –
   “Love the ‘Make Friends First’ motto of the Porch Party Movement!”

From Natalie –
    “Loving the idea of a donor appreciation gathering. And all the other reasons for staging a Porch Party.”

Why have a Porch Party social event? 

From Brittany (a board member) –
    “Love that we are Friendraising NOT Fundraising!”

From Elika –
    “I love being reminded that it doesn’t need to be a direct ask and we can really build the relationships and do more ‘showing’ not ‘telling.’”

From Elizabeth –
“I really want to do these! Our galas take so much energy, time, and effort. These feel more personal!”

From Ginny –
    “This is DOABLE. Not too complicated, compared to other events.”

Comments regarding the Role of Board Members

From Laura –
    “Love this as a way to engage my board members to help!”

From Christian –
    I love all of the ideas on utilizing Board Members – and I definitely relate to them tending to be more internally focused on the organization. I’m excited to think through how we can remind them of their external role as ambassadors!”

From Tina –
    “Love assigning the board members to greet specific people at the event.”

From Lisa  (a board member)–
    “This Board Member loves putting Board Members as hosts and at the FRONT of the event… if the Board doesn’t best represent the entity…. who does”??”

From Jennifer –

“I am so excited to share this information with my E.D. and the Board!”

Our Best Practices for Inviting

From Theresa –
    “Great advice: Invite x3 the number you hope will attend.”

From Valencia –
    “Love the name tags tip!  It encourages everyone to talk to each other.”


We Noted the Program Must Be Short

From Kristin  –
    “Loved, keep it short, no longer than 12-15 minutes.”

From Valencia –
    “Love that. Focus on the why this work is important instead of what we do.”

From Lorie –
    “My takeaway is – don’t go too long on the presentation and make it exciting.”

From Deborah –
    “Prepare the host and use an emcee if there’s a talker who tends to talk too long.”

From Debbie –
    “Love calling it ‘Remarks’ instead of a ‘Program’.”

Our Tips for Working the Room Were Popular

From Jasmine –
    “I loved the advice on how to work the room!”

From Laura –
    “Equip introvert hosts with helpful questions to ask as they greet guests.”

From Heather –
    “This really landed for me: The attitude of your host can make or break your
event
.”

Advice on Following Up After the Event

From Ashleigh –
    “I like the idea of “triaging” the guest list and following up with the top people first.”

From Megan –
    “Love the ideas of a Follow Up Card with a QR Code!”


Some final comments:

From Paula –
    “Thanks for the advice on how to handle the expenses of the event!

From Elsa
    “Thank you, ladies, for this very informative and engaging webinar. I’m a newbie at fundraising so I really like the friend-raising approach.

From Lisa

    “This was incredibly helpful and insightful.  Thank you.”

From Heather –
    “My favorite is the reminder to include JOY in our work.” and “Perfect, and thank you very much for this opportunity to learn a new twist on donor engagement.

Bottom Line: Takeaways from the Porch Party Webinar.

Creating small, intimate events is a superb way to reach new friends, share the impact of your cause, and engage supporters.

Missed the live webinar?

No problem – sign up for the Porch Party Newsletter by Monday and get the Porch Party Webinar “after party” right into your inbox on Tuesday!

Then stay tuned for more advice each week to ensure you the event no one will want to miss!







Just imagine: what if you had a new way to increase visibility and make new friends for your cause?

Wouldn’t it be wonderful if you had an authentic and impactful way to help donors get to know your work, build trust and establish meaningful connections with your leadership?

Then consider the power of a no-ask friendmaking event like a Porch Party.

Don’t miss our free webinar on June 7th,

“Unleash the Power of Porch Parties to Gain New Friends, Supporters, and Donors!”

You’ll discover how to stage the ultimate summer Porch Party friendraising event!

Count me in!

Even more, social gatherings for your cause can foster a wonderful sense of community.

Let’s explore how a Porch Party can help you build trust and ignite interest in your cause:

1. Getting to Know Your Organization:

Count me in!

A Porch Party provides a welcoming and intimate environment for donors to engage with your leaders on a personal level.

By hosting a relaxed social gathering, you create a space where conversations among people can flow naturally, allowing attendees to get to know you. They can also gain firsthand insights into the mission, impact, and values of your organization.

As they learn more about your cause and understand your work, typically, people’s interest will begin to grow. Before you know it, you’ve just made a new “friend” for your organization.

In this webinar, we’ll share our tips to engage your attendees in discussions about your mission.

2. Establishing Authentic Connections:

There’s another reason we like Porch Parties: a casual social gathering can create the space to foster authentic connections between potential donors and your cause.

By inviting potential supporters to engage in conversations, share stories, and forge friendships, you help to create a sense of belonging and purpose. And that is surely a lovely thing.

This is what we mean when we talk about engaging donors – you are helping them forge personal connections with your work.

As attendees connect with others who share their interests, they’ll also connect more deeply with your cause. This fosters a bond based on shared values and common goals.

All this happens before you ever ask for a gift.

In our June 7th webinar, we’ll share why friendmaking is a powerful fundraising strategy.

3. Building Relationships that Inspire Support

Just remember: Successful fundraising is based on meaningful relationships with donors. And most importantly, these relationships are based on trust and understanding.

A Porch Party allows you to go beyond the transactional aspect of fundraising and move into cultivating genuine connections.

When you nurture donor relationships, and demonstrate your organization’s community-wide impact, you inspire donors to contribute willingly. They can move on to become long-term advocates for your cause.

Making Friends First.

The Porch Party motto is “Make friends first.”

First, you help donors get to know your cause and build their trust in your organization.

Then, later, you invite them to donate. First things first.

When you prioritize relationship-building and focus on genuine connections, you create a solid foundation for long-term donor engagement.

Just imagine: your donors and prospects are becoming more familiar with your cause. They’re beginning to witness the impact of your work. And above all, they are building trust in your organization.

At that point, they’ll be more inclined to contribute willingly and wholeheartedly. You are “attracting” donors rather than “pitching donors.”

Your Next Porch Party Is a Platform for Building Trust and Inspiring Support.

Remember, a Porch Party is not just a social gathering; it’s a platform for building trust, fostering connections, and inspiring support.

Make each Porch Party gathering a memorable experience. You can showcase your organization’s values, its mission, and, most of all, your dedication to creating positive change.

We want you to embrace the power of Porch Parties to make new friends for your organization. New friends who will become deeply engaged donors.

In the June 7th webinar, we’ll share the best format for the program at a Porch Party.

BOTTOM LINE: A small social gathering is a perfect way to create a welcoming atmosphere for new friends.

You can let the porch become a stage for meaningful conversations and relationships that will propel your cause forward. Hope to see you there!