Creating a Nonprofit Event Budget that Maximizes Impact

Creating a Nonprofit Event Budget that Maximizes Impact

In this eBook, nonprofit event expert AJ Steinberg shares her event budget worksheets and strategies to help you succeed at your next nonprofit event.

When I produced my first nonprofit event twenty years ago, I had never heard of the term event budget. I didn’t know they existed, so of course I had no clue as to how to prepare one. But boy, it sure didn’t take long for me to learn the value of having an accurate idea of the projected expenses and revenues of any nonprofit special event. I quickly understood that if I was to succeed with my events’ goals, I needed to start my planning off with a budget.

Through the years I have learned that each event’s budget is unique, as costs and revenue fluctuate region to region and event to event. But whether hosting a gala, festival, or house party, organizations need to identify their particular event’s budget in order to properly plan and execute each event.

While there are loads of examples of event budgets available for you to review, whether online or from your organization’s past history, you will need to channel both your inner accountant and sleuth in order to accurately understand the costs you will be faced with when producing each of your events.

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– A Sneak Peak Into “Creating a Nonprofit Event Budget that Maximizes Impact”

Take an Inside Look at the Chapters of This Ebook:


Chapter 1: Why You Need an Event Budget

An event budget is an important evaluation tool for goal setting. A nonprofit event has five goals – fundraising, raising awareness for the organization, raising awareness of an organization’s programs, cultivation, and appreciation. The event’s budget plays into…

Chapter 2: Terminology You Should Know

As I said, when I began planning events, I knew nothing about budgeting. In order to help you avoid feeling lost and confused like I did, here are some definitions for you newbies to get you started out right with…

Chapter 3: Getting Started with Your Event Budget

I am not a whiz at accounting, but Excel spreadsheets even make me look like a superstar numbers cruncher. Here is a sample of a simple budget done on Excel. Your budget worksheet may have even more details and line items than shown here, as everyone keeps track of their…

Chapter 4: Figuring Out the Line Items

Let’s start with the revenue portion of your nonprofit event budget since it is much simpler than the expense portion of your spreadsheet.

Your revenue items are things like sponsorships, ticket sales, auction and raffle sales, paddle raises and donations. List  the…

Chapter 5: Calculating Ticket Prices and Sponsor Levels

Once you have filled in your spreadsheet, it is time to really figure out what revenue needs to be raised to make this event worthwhile. This means you need to figure out how much your organization wants to net gain from your event. You figure out the net gain by subtracting the money raised from the expenses incurred. 

There are no official guidelines stating best practices for fundraising events, especially when it…

Chapter 6: Trimming the Fat from Your Event Budget

 When you are charging $200 or more for a ticket, you need to make the event feel upscale and elegant. Sure, the ticket price goes toward raising money for a good cause, but the old saying “it takes money to make money” really does apply to higher end events.

There are, however, places where you can…


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