Peer-to-peer team captains are the secret weapons that can take your event to the next level. Given the right tools and encouragement, they’ll be your biggest fundraising advocates. Think about it! You don’t have the time or resources to manage each and every event participant. But you have the time and resources to equip team captains to do so!
Here’s how to build a peer-to-peer team captain base that will help you hit your goals.
Get Peer-to-Peer Team Captains Registered Early
Peer-to-peer team captains are going to be your proverbial “boots on the ground” during your event. If you want them to be effective, you’ll need time to train them! Getting them registered early ensures they have all the time they need.
Before you open registration, scope out potential team captains. Identify great candidates by asking questions like:
- Who has a record of volunteering with us?
- Who has participated in the past?
- Who’s gone above and beyond during other events?
- Who’s really passionate about our mission?
Once you’ve identified your strongest potential captains, approach them about being leaders during your event. Recruit your team captains and get them signed up! The sooner this happens, the sooner you’ll be able to get your campaign rolling.
Speaking of rolling…
Roll Out the Red Carpet for Team Captains
Your peer-to-peer event is a big part of your budget… and your peer-to-peer team captains are your best bet for making your goal. Show them how much you appreciate their support! Your base of team captains need to be heavily engaged with your event and your fundraising — they’ll be more engaged if they’re shown that their engagement is invaluable.
Show your peer-to-peer team captains how much they’re appreciated by:
- Throwing a kickoff bash for team captains
- Offering training for team captains who aren’t familiar with your peer-to-peer fundraising platform
- Sending regular emails containing encouragement, thank-you messages, and pointers
- Recognizing team captains (and their teams!) who are doing an exceptional job
- And more!
Prioritize appreciating your team captains. It’ll keep current captains engaged and excited, and it’ll inspire others who may want to be captains in the future.
Provide a Point of Contact for Team Captains who Need Support
Your team captains will inspire and support the other fundraisers on their team. Be ready to inspire and support your team captains!
Peer-to-peer events have tons of moving parts, so you’ll rely on your team captains to help participants with their questions and keep them excited about fundraising. When a team captain has questions or concerns, they should know exactly who to call. Provide a point of contact to each team captain. That contact should be their go-to person if they need help.
But here’s a huge catch: if you’re going to provide a point of contact, that person should be easy to reach! Offering help from a person who’s unreachable or unresponsive is even worse than not offering a point of contact at all. Depending on the size of your event, you may need to split team captains between two or more staff members. However you do it, ensure your peer-to-peer team captains get the support they need.
Send Your Peer-to-Peer Team Captains Relevant Emails
Most peer-to-peer events will span several weeks or months. When you’re planning a long fundraising period, a one-off welcome for team captains isn’t enough to keep them engaged and excited. Plan to send your team captains regular updates that are relevant to their position as leaders.
Some good topics for regular email updates include:
- Tips for recruiting passionate team members
- Ideas they can use to train or support new participants
- Templates for recruiting team members
- Email and social post templates
- Ways to encourage shy or reluctant fundraisers
As your event draws closer, you’ll also want to send emails about logistics. Team captains should know where to rally their team, where they should park, when to pick up team packets or bibs, etc.
Debrief Team Captains After Your Event
Your peer-to-peer team captains see your event from a different perspective than you. Remember, they’re your “boots on the ground.” They probably get feedback from other participants, see areas for improvement, and have ideas for future events. Make use of their unique perspectives!
After your event, take time to connect one-on-one with your team captains. Ask them for their input! What went well? How could your next event be better? Did they get any feedback from other participants? Keep their ideas in mind as you plan future events.
Practice Good Participant Retention Methods
A few simple best practices will help you retain your participants between events. Read this article for tons of ideas!