What We Do Best
Hoopla Communications is a small business that specializes in producing events for non-profits in the Chicago area. From beginning to end, Hoopla will work with you to plan a memorable and high-impact fundraiser, friend-raiser, meeting, or conference that furthers the mission of your organization. We offer a variety of services from which you can choose, whether you are looking for support throughout the event planning process or just need to augment your staff on-site.
Overall Event Management
Hoopla will work with you to gain a deep understanding of your organization’s mission and culture, as well as the goals of your event. We know that the needs and desires of every organization are different, and our goal is to support your success, however your organization defines it. In the initial stages of the event planning process, we will help you define your goals and how they can best be accomplished. We will create a production timeline detailing each task that has to get done, who will do it, and when it will be completed. We will schedule regular phone calls and/or meetings to ensure that both Hoopla and your staff are on task and problem solve any issues that arise.
Venue Research and Management
Based on your event size, budget, and target audience, Hoopla will help you find the best space for your fundraiser, friend-raiser, or conference. Having worked solely in Chicago for over 15 years, we maintain strong relationships with many hotels and event spaces throughout the city. We keep an up-to-date database of many venues around the city, and will accompany you on walk-throughs to make sure that you have all the information you need to make the best decision about the space for your event. Once a venue is chosen, we will work with their staff to ensure a flawless event. We will also hire other vendors as needed, including florists, light designers, and musicians, to ensure the venue looks and feels perfect.
Vendor Research and Management
With over 15 years of experience, Hoopla will recommend vendors to fit your organization’s needs and desires. From print material production to catering to flowers and décor, Hoopla will research and hire vendors as needed to ensure a smooth event. We maintain relationships with caterers, printers, designers, florists, and others, and strive to work with woman and minority owned businesses.
Sponsorship is a major part of many events and we will work with you from start to finish to ensure you achieve your fundraising goals. Hoopla can help with creating an appealing benefits package, designing a user-friendly reply form, managing lists and outreach follow up, and will work with Board, staff or Committee members to help them in their outreach to potential sponsors. We will assist in tracking pledges and payments, collecting ads and logos for promotional materials, and collecting guest information to make sure each sponsor has the high level of attention they deserve.
Registration Tracking and Production
Hoopla understands how important it is to make sure that each guest receives top level customer service, and that starts with making sure your registration process is as smooth as possible. We will work with your staff to create an appropriate tracking system for reservations and ticket purchases, recommend outside vendors if need be for online ticketing systems, work with Board, Staff, and Committees on list development and management for invitation outreach, track RSVPs and follow up for guest names and accommodation needs. If you are assigning seating at your event, Hoopla will work with lead organization staff to make sure everyone has the right spot, and we can produce all materials for guests for the day of the event, including but not limited to name badges, tent cards, bidding cards, and any other materials you want available to your guests.
Hoopla also has an in-house online registration tool that allows sponsors with multiple seats to register their guests, and change their registrations as often as they need to, right up to the moment of production of all materials, freeing up your time and theirs as they decide who they want to send to your event.
Committee and Board Management
If you have a host committee or board that is involved in your event, Hoopla will do regular outreach to those involved to let them know what they should be doing and when it should be done. We will train them with best practices for asking their contacts to attend the event and soliciting sponsorships and auction donations, if they are involved in that way. Hoopla will collect host committee contact lists to mail invitations and ask for sponsorships. We will also track and collect any donations to auctions or raffles promised by host committee or board members.
Produce Print Materials and Signage
Hoopla will assist in production of print materials, including invitations, program books, and on-site signage. We will write the text for your invitation and program book and will work with a designer to make it fit your branding. We will work with you to decide what signage is necessary to assist guests in finding your event, acknowledge sponsors, and direct guests to different physical areas of the event space. Hoopla maintains relationships with a variety of printers and designers to make your materials look great at an affordable cost.
Whether you are planning a raffle, silent auction, live auction, or Fund the Need, Hoopla will work with you to produce the best possible combination of fundraising activities to make sure your guests have a great time and have the right amount of opportunities to give and support your organization. Hoopla maintains an up-to-date database of hundreds of businesses in the Chicagoland area and will write and mail solicitation letters to a selected list based on the size and variety of packages you would like to include. We will also collect and store all donations we receive leading up to the event, track the donations and their values, and package items together as necessary. Hoopla will also work with you on best practices for asking host committee and board members to be involved in the donation solicitation process.
On site, Hoopla will build an eye-catching display for your raffle or auction using props and signage. We will create bid sheets for silent auctions, produce tickets for raffles, and make tracking sheets for live auctions. We will also assist in the checkout process using paper forms or Square, depending on your preference. Hoopla will package all items and certificates to be collected by guests at the end of the event.
Having worked many events, Hoopla is equipped to support you in whatever way you need on site. We provide flexible staff that will do whatever job you need. This includes, but is not limited to:
• Arriving early to set up the space (building auction display, placing program books on chairs or tables, placing giveaways or handouts in designated areas, placing centerpieces, etc.)
• Running the show alongside the A/V provider
• Working at registration
• Selling raffle tickets
• Staffing VIPs
• Stage management (ensuring all speakers are on stage at the right time)
• Directing guests from the entrance or parking lot to the event space
• And more!
Staff and Volunteer Management
Running a successful event means having all hands on deck the day of, and sometimes that means bringing in outside help. Hoopla will work with you by assessing your staffing needs, working with current staff to place them in the best role at the event, drafting volunteer outreach documents including organization, event, and job descriptions, tracking volunteer sign ups, and leading staff and volunteer training.
Post-Event Follow Up
Hoopla values reflection and evaluation of the event and its outcomes. We will work with you to schedule a phone call or meeting to debrief the successes and challenges of your event with the ultimate goal of growth within your organization.
To maintain your organization’s relationships with your donors and sponsors, Hoopla will work with you to send thank you notes to guests, sponsors, auction or raffle donors, and speakers who all helped to make your event successful.
Strategic Planning and Capacity Building
Is your organization ready to reflect on the past, observe the present, and craft your future? Hoopla works in partnership to design and lead the planning process with the outcome in mind—a pro-active plan that will guide the staff and board to do high-impact work furthering your mission.
Need a few confidential management brainstorming and direction sessions to help problem solve a hot button issue on your staff? Does your team need a booster session on how to work a room, run a meeting? Want to offer a fundraising training to your Board? Hoopla provides customized sessions to move your team, organization, and mission forward.