Fundraising Report: Non-profits at Outdoor Retailer cashed in on attendee generosity

Fundraising Report: Non-profits at Outdoor Retailer cashed in on attendee generosity
Author:
Updated:
Original:

Tap a keg and start counting the cash. Beer:30 at trade shows is more than just social hour. Savvy non-profits turn happy hours (and gear sales) into huge profits that help keep them afloat.

fundraising

Big City Mountaineers raked in about $25K through just four well-executed events at Outdoor Retailer Winter Market. // Photo: Big City Mountaineers

When 5 o’clock rolls around during Outdoor Retailer, the show floor becomes a party of giveaways, happy hours and raffles supporting different charities and nonprofits, but some pull in the dough more than others.

According to Outdoor Retailer Daily’s event listings, there were roughly 87 of these philanthropic affairs supporting 20 different organizations from environmental activism and trail maintenance to youth education and food banks.

Big City Mountaineers was one of the show’s most heavily supported groups, racking up roughly $25,000 in fundraisers at Winter Market 2017. According to their Executive Director Bryan Martin, OR shows aren’t just an extra sprinkling of donations, but a very real factor in the budgets for groups like theirs.

fundraising

For the Conservation Alliance, who benefited from more individual fundraisers (34!) than any other non-profit, OR show proceeds fund “the vast majority” of CA’s operating budget, according to Program Director, Serena Bishop Gordon. Bishop Gordon wasn't able to release the total amount CA raised from those fundraisers, but she said OR shows typically account for a large portion of its administrative budget.

So what’s the key to getting in on OR attendees’ generosity? “These fundraisers come out of long-term relationships,” said Bishop Gordon.

Martin and Teresa Martinez, the executive director of the Continental Divide Trail Coalition, also stressed the value of strong brand partnerships. Ideas for events come evenly from both the charity and the brand. “Sometimes they come up with the idea and approach us, other times we do,” said Martin.

For those he does reach out to, it’s typically a brand BCM already has a relationship with, but he brainstorms options and lets the brand determine what they’re comfortable with. For the brands that do initiate, they’re eager to show off their charitable acts to customers, and ensuring they benefit too is important. “Everyone thinks they’re getting something out of it,” said Martin, whether that’s good public relations, a tax write-off, traffic at a brand’s booth, or the chance to highlight a specific item or product through a sale or giveaway. Martinez said a “two-way street” is important.

Planning also plays a big part in high-quality fundraisers. Martin recommends starting to think about events for the summer show almost right after the winter. “Give yourself the lead time,” he said, to adequately connect, plan and promote the event. Then at the next show, just sit back, have a beer, and watch the support roll in.

Related

$11,500 Raised for Non-Profits at the Outdoor Retailer Show

$11,500 Raised for Non-Profits at the Outdoor Retailer ShowMountain Hardwear, Montrail® Donate to American Hiking Society, Leave No Trace and Conservation AllianceRichmond, Calif. (August 27, 2009) – Mountain Hardwear Inc. and Montrail would like to thank all who participated ...read more

From left: Deanne Buck of Camber Outdoors, Steve Rendle of VF Corp., and Rue Mapp of Outdoor Afro

Principle over profits theme of Camber Outdoors breakfast

“Purpose-led” was the term of the day at the Camber Outdoor Thought Leader Keynote during Outdoor Retailer Summer Market, when the VF Corporation's CEO Steve Rendle detailed the company’s plans to redefine the conglomerate’s internal mission. “What’s that common thread that’s ...read more

Outdoor Retailer Attendee Registration on Par with 2008 Bechmarks

SAN JUAN CAPISTRANO, Calif. – June 15, 2009 – Outdoor Retailer today announced that attendee registration numbers for the 2009 Outdoor Retailer Summer Market show, held at the Salt Palace Convention Center in Salt Lake City, Utah, July 21-24, 2009, are meeting benchmarks from ...read more

Outdoor Retailer Opens Online Attendee Registration for Summer Market

Qualified retailers and distributors can register for free before June 16, 2009,and receive show credentials and expo information prior to the showSAN JUAN CAPISTRANO, Calif. - March 12, 2009 - Outdoor Retailer, a division of Nielsen Business Media, today announced the opening of ...read more

Attendee Registration Opens for Outdoor Retailer Winter Market 2012

Attendee Registration Opens for Outdoor Retailer Winter Market 2012 SAN JUAN CAPISTRANO, Calif. - October 18, 2011 - Today, retailers can register online to participate in the outdoor industry's premier tradeshow and demo event, Outdoor Retailer Winter Market 2012, January 19-22 ...read more

Outdoor Retailer Winter Market '08: Snowshoe trends and product report

The SNEWS® trade show reporting team, which was 15 editors strong thanks to the addition of our Backpacker magazine comrades, scampered around the trade show floor over the course of Outdoor Retailer Winter Market to bring you the most comprehensive take on trends, directions, ...read more

OIWC_logo09

Outdoor Industry Companies Host Fundraisers to Support the Outdoor Industries Women’s Coalition at Outdoor Retailer Summer Market

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Toni CareyBrand DirectorOutdoor Industries Women’s Coalitiontcarey@oiwc.org(201) 323-4360 Outdoor Industry Companies Host Fundraisers to Support the Outdoor Industries Women’s Coalition at Outdoor Retailer Summer Market BOULDER, Colo., July 26, ...read more

Attendee Registration Opens for Outdoor Retailer Summer Market 2011

News Brief Attendee Registration Opens for Outdoor Retailer Summer Market 2011 SAN JUAN CAPISTRANO, Calif. – March 22, 2011 – Today, attendees can register online to participate in the outdoor industry’s premier tradeshow and demo event, Outdoor Retailer Summer Market 2011, ...read more

Outdoor Retailer Rewards Attendee for Sharing Her Adventure!

It’s no secret that Outdoor Retailer attendees partake in their fair share of adventure before, during, and after the show. This past show, OR partnered with an outdoor tech start-up, Venturepax, to capture adventures from their community. From Fly Fishing the Provo to Mountain ...read more