Dance Marathons are incredibly fun, engaging fundraising events that are perfect for groups focused on younger donors, beneficiaries, and audiences.
They’re extremely popular with college groups, since most Dance Marathons rely heavily on peer-to-peer (P2P) fundraising strategies and tactics.
With a P2P fundraising solution helping to power Dance Marathons, your team can:
Planning a successful Dance Marathon requires understanding how a Dance Marathon actually works. Dance Marathons typically last between 24 and 28 hours and require participants to dance (aka stay on their feet and moving) for a majority of the time.
Participants of a Dance Marathon use P2P fundraising to raise money for their team, which can be a group, club, or just the individual dancer. Throughout the Dance Marathon there are activities, competitions, awards, and other events to spur that competitive fundraising element and keep participants engaged.
In this article, we’ll take a deeper look at Dance Marathons and uncover strategies and ideas to raise even more money while having fun with your donors and dancers.
These activities are a sure-fire way to keep your dancers excited, energized, and on their feet during your next Dance Marathon!
Dance Marathons are incredibly long events, it’s critical for organizers to execute exciting events to keep participants engaged, motivated, awake, and on their feet for 24-48 hours.
To get the competitive juices flowing and create the energy that help propel fundraising, create competitions during your Dance Marathon. There’s nothing like a dance competition during a Dance Marathon.
Swing dance competitions are fun contests that get people out of their comfort zones and really wake them up. Because not many people know how to swing dance, making it a competition is an exercise in creativity. Just make sure nobody swings anyone too hard!
In the first few hours of your Dance Marathon, you’ll need to come right out of the gate with exciting, engaging activities to get people hyped and set the tone that they have a fun few days ahead of them. Here’s a couple strategies to ensure your talent show is a hit:
Dance marathons are all about having fun with friends and new acquaintances. And nothing says ‘I’m here to make friends’ like a good old-fashioned hula hoop competition.
These are quite literally the perfect complementary activity for Dance Marathons. They’re quick, easy, and can be spun up anywhere at any time.
Here’s a few quick strategies to add a Hula Hoop contest to your next Dance Marathon:
Hula hoop mania can take off quickly at your Dance Marathon, so be sure to stock your event center with hula hoops!
Dance Marathons can take time, but they are definitely worth it. Here’s a few ideas to get more people out on the dance floor!
One of the foundational strategies of P2P fundraising campaigns is harnessing the power of social media and social networks. Like most social fundraisers, your Dance Marathon will depend on activating your most loyal supporters and fundraising ambassadors.
Unlike a typical 5k run or golf outing, Dance Marathons require participants to dedicate a large amount of time to your cause. That’s why the more the merrier!
Here’s a few best practices for driving social connections and creating more reach for your Dance Marathon:
By fully utilizing social media, you’ll not only get more people on board, but you’ll spread your message to a much wider socially motivated donor audience.
Another go-to P2P fundraising strategy is team fundraising. This is even smarter with Dance Marathons, since you’re trying to fill your space and get more dancers on the floor.
You should still provide a single dancer fundraising option, but also give your participants the ability to sign up a part of a larger team.
Sorority and fraternity teams are especially popular at university Dance Marathons. Every individual should have their own individual fundraising campaign, but there should be a general team page as well for dancers who want to attend and participate but don’t want to have their own fundraising campaign.
Here’s five must have tips to create a positive giving experience and maximize donations:
Incentives, Premiums, and Milestones
Your most competitive P2P participants usually don’t need additional motivation, but the average participants might need a bit more encouragement to get serious about raising funds and recruiting.
Think about how you can use contests to:
Another huge motivator is premiums. Offering incentives at certain fundraising and recruiting milestones is an effective way to motivate behavior and incentivize higher fundraising levels, a win-win! Here are a few tips to keep in mind when using these tactics:
A great theme can take your Dance Marathon from ‘same old same’ to ‘the best weekend of my life’ for dancers.
Everyone loves a dance party, there’s no doubt about that. Dancing to the same music over and over (and over) for two straight days can quickly become tedious and boring.
This is why a Dancing through the Decades party is such a great idea. There’s nothing like a 2-hour block of:
Bonus points if you have costumes and props for each decade!
A spin-off of the Dancing Through the Decades theme is the more focused 90’s party. There’s nothing better than wild 90’s costumes, 90’s music, and all-out 90’s decorations.
The best part about a 90’s part is that there is no shortage of inspiration. Whether you want to go the boy band route or channel 90’s cartoons, there are plenty of games, contests, and party music to last the entire time.
Although you’re technically hosting a Dance Marathon, all that is really required is that participants stand for the allotted time (and even this requirement can be flexible if you want it to be).
Hosting a sports-themed Dance Marathon is a great way to keep people moving and keep them awake! Consider fun sports or competitions like:
Using your fundraising ticketing system you can have participants sign up for events like these, and so many more. Think of your Dance Marathon like a field day complete with events, stations, teams, and even awards.
Nonprofits rely on dancers and participants to fundraise before, during, and after the Dance Marathon. Here’s a few ideas to keep the donations coming in.
While Dance Marathons are a fun way to bring donors and supporters together, they’re also prime fundraising events. Well-planned and well-attended Dance Marathons can bring in millions of dollars for charitable organizations.
In order to ensure the financial aspects of your event aren’t overshadowed by the team camaraderie, give out awards for the top fundraisers and donors.
Check out these sure fire strategies for highlight award winners and creating competitive excitement:
To help participants bring in smaller donations from friends and family, lean in to the social media-focus of P2P fundraising and take advantage of networks!
Your participants can post messages to incentivize their own networks to donate to their fundraising pages:
Live appeals are one of the best kept secrets of fundraising events for good reason. They’re the perfect way to bring in last-minute donations to push your event towards and over your fundraising goal.
Plus, because Dance Marathons are so energetic, the exciting atmosphere is the perfect place for spur-of-the-moment gives.
Be sure to incorporate these quick tips for orchestrating a live appeal during your Dance Marathon:
Then, at the very end of your event, announce to your dancers (and live stream on your website and social channels) how much you raised!
Time to Get Started
It’s all about having the right plan, the right tools, and the right people behind your cause to move things forward. Now it’s time to get the creative juices flowing and get planning your Dance Marathon!
Make sure you’re using robust peer-to-peer fundraising software that supports these strategies and allows for complete customization of your Dance Marathon! Learn more about social fundraising for runs, walks, and rides with our downloadable guide.