The Stress-Free Guide to Running Charity Streams

7/7/20247 min read

Two small red stained wooden hearts on a grey wood table
Two small red stained wooden hearts on a grey wood table

Intro to Charity Streams

Hey there! If you're a content creator looking to give back and make a difference, charity streams are an amazing way to do so. They not only help you support a cause you care about, but they also bring your community together for a common goal. In this guide, I'll walk you through some essential tips to ensure your charity stream runs smoothly and stress-free.

Planning Your Charity Stream

First things first, planning is key. Start by choosing a cause or organization that resonates with you and your audience. Make sure to reach out to the charity beforehand to let them know about your plans. They might provide promotional materials or other support to help you out. Once you have a cause, schedule your stream for a time that works best for you and your viewers. Announce it well in advance to build anticipation and ensure a good turnout.

Before we go over the exciting things you could plan for your charity event, let's go over the definite "don'ts" during your charity campaign.

If you are considering a marathon stream, or are considering doing anything that could be potentially harmful in a worst case scenario, take the time to think about your health. Make sure anything you're going to eat or drink is safe for human consumption and is not past its expiry date. Be very careful with any stunts or tricks.

❌ Do not accept donations for consuming alcohol, drugs, or any other illegal substances.

❌ Do not push yourself and cause yourself to become ill or injured.

❌ Do not plan to stream without a friend or moderator checking on your wellbeing.

❌ Do not keep any money ear-marked for donation for yourself.

❌ Do not misrepresent the charity you are fundraising for. They depend on us to meet their biggest goals.

❌ Do not plan for a 24 hour stream. These are dangerous for many creators. Purposefully schedule breaks.

Engaging Your Audience

One of the best ways to keep your audience engaged and motivated to donate is through interactive activities. Consider incorporating donation goals with fun incentives like silly challenges, shout-outs, or even exclusive content. Use overlays and alerts to keep everyone informed of the progress and celebrate milestones together. Don't forget to actively thank your viewers and donors throughout the stream - their support is what makes the event successful!

Rewards are incentives (set up by fundraisers OR by causes) with minimum donation amounts that can be offered to donors. These can be restricted by time or quantity if desired and can be set to collect shipping addresses or deliver redemption codes where needed. Please note that Raffles can be considered gambling in some parts of the world, and should not be run through Tiltify's Reward page. If you would like to run a raffle, I suggest keeping a spreadsheet of applicable donors. Let's go over some reward ideas.

✨ Design a product (stickers, enamel pins, shirts, you name it) unique to this event and sell through a vendor for a limited time.

✨ Reach out to family and friends- providing a dollar amount can really help! I ask for a small amount, like $5, or $1. Remember to always be respectful and thank them for their time.

✨ Offer exclusive access to member-only platforms (Patreon for example) for a limited time to applicable donors.

✨ If you are an artist of any type, auctioning off a piece or doing a raffle can build excitement for the event.

✨ Recipe Books! Crowdsource recipes from different supporters, volunteers, and friends to compile a charity cookbook with their permission. (NOTE Digital delivery is best!)

✨ Reach out to local artists or artists that make products relevant to the event and ask them to donate a certain amount of product. Remember to always be respectful, thank them for their time.

✨ "Stream-A-Thon" streams can be done where donations add a certain amount of time to a live timer for which the creator must stream.

✨ Dress Up- add donation incentives for adding a silly hat, or some other easily adorned accessory.

✨ Modification of content creation- working with your controls inverted, playing with oven mitts, taking off glasses, or standing to play can be great ways to allow donors to interact directly with the creator when live.

✨ Corporate Matching Gifts- Ask your employer if they will match your community's donation at the end of the campaign.

✨ Request a Sponsorship from a local business- check with local businesses like bakeries, kitchen appliance stores, and others to see if they will sponsor your content with a donation. Shoot for smaller "mom and pop" stores rather than large corporations.

✨ Change Jar- Keep a decorated jar from now until the end of the month and only collect coins! This can also be known as "Penny Wars" when done competitively between two or more groups raising money for the same cause.

✨ Host a yard sale and put all contributions towards your donation goal. Bonus if you can get your neighbors to join you!

✨ Run a contest with an entry fee that goes towards your donation goal. This could be art, the cutest pet, or anything fun! Make sure to have your reward for the winner secured before running the contest. Remember that digital goods and delivery are best.

✨ Exercise for donations by adding a certain amount and type of exercise to your rewards/incentives list. Make sure to take care of yourself!

✨ Guess The Number In the Jar- fill a jar with beans, jelly beans, or your favorite type of candy and charge per guess of items in the jar. The donor with the closest guess receives a prize. Make sure to have your reward for the winner secured before running the contest. Remember that digital goods and delivery are best.

✨ Donor Name Written Down- Some creators choose to write donor names on their skin, but to protect yourself I suggest cheap ornaments, a decorated poster, or even a T-shirt! For a certain amount donated, a donor's name would be added. Great way to be creative- offer different creative options the higher the donation!

✨ Merch sale profits for a limited time are contributed to charity. Make sure to be clear on what items and time period you will be donating your proceeds within.

✨ Crowd Control for live streaming allows donors to change your game directly! I highly suggest checking out their supported titles.

✨ If the game or activity you have chosen does not work with Crowd Control, you can still add incentives to change how you play. For example: $1 to drop a weapon, or $5 to change the character you are playing.

✨ Some creators choose to do Bean Boozled, which are every-flavor jelly beans, for a certain donation. The creator would choose a bean at random and may be met with a nasty surprise! (Not for those with sensitive stomachs.)

✨ Temporary tattoos for donations are another safer way for donors to interact during a livestream. If you have sensitive skin or responsibilities within the next three days post event, steer clear of this option.

✨ AMA. Give viewers the option to ask you anything and get an honest answer out of you on stream.

✨ Change your voice. This can either be doing an accent or using something like Voicemod to give yourself a funny voice filter.

✨ Tongue Twister. Find and pronounce a tongue twister. Bonus points if it’s relevant to the cause.

✨ Song & Dance. You can either spend a period of time singing everything you say, or break out into song. This can be equally gratifying if you’re a skilled musician or can’t carry a tune in a bucket. Alternately, you can burst into dance.

✨ Pet cam! Promise to bring out a fluffy friend to say hi to chat. If you have a pet who hangs around, you can also use this for people to get you to pet them or give them treats.

Goal oriented rewards are fun activities that are planned once your donation total reaches a certain amount, or a Milestone. Here are some ideas!

👍 Whipped cream pie to the face! Trash bags and plastic drop cloths for painting from the hardware store are great for rapid cleanup in your studio!

👍 Dying hair a specific color- can be during the event or done after by a professional. Make sure to document the journey!

👍 Waxing during the event. Make sure to take care of yourself! Please also review the terms of service for whatever platform you post to.

👍 Cutting or shaving your hair. Do it carefully!

👍 Planning a future stream, video, or content. Don't forget to deliver on your promises!

👍 Costume change. Have an entire outfit set aside that chat can make you wear: a bunny onesie, a cosplay, etc.

👍 Game Giveaways. You can usually get some mystery game key bundles for super cheap at Fanatical, Humble Bundle, Indiegala, GMG, to use for game giveaways.

👍 New Tattoo. Maybe do this once in a lifetime, and make sure the value is insanely high.

Technical Preparation

Technical hiccups can be a major stress point, so it's important to ensure everything is set up correctly ahead of time. Test your streaming software, internet connection, and all equipment days before the event. Have a backup plan in case something goes wrong - whether it's a secondary device or a quick troubleshooting guide. Additionally, consider having a moderator or a co-host to help manage the chat and handle any technical issues that arise during the stream.

After the Stream

Once your charity stream is over, take some time to breathe and reflect on the experience. Follow up by sharing the results with your community and thanking everyone for their contributions. If you have any leftover donations, make sure to send them to the charity promptly. Finally, gather feedback from your viewers and use it to make your next charity stream even better. Remember, the goal is to have fun while making a positive impact!

Have An Open Heart

Running a charity stream doesn't have to be a daunting task. With proper planning, engaging content, and a bit of technical preparation, you can create a meaningful and enjoyable experience for everyone involved. So go ahead, pick a cause you love, and start planning your stress-free charity stream today. Your efforts can make a real difference in the world, one stream at a time!