Optional event setting: Tracking additional guests

In this article:

What are the benefits of tracking additional guests?

Selecting the option to track additional guests in an event lets you keep tabs on the people who are attending your event but who are not constituents in your account. The key benefits of doing this are:

  • You don't need to create a full constituent record for spouses or other guests who are attending
  • You can track custom fields for all attendees (such as meal preferences)
  • You can print name tag labels for all attendees (not just the primary constituent)
  • You can print a registration sheet that includes all attendees (not just the primary constituent)

Caveats to consider before using this feature

There are some restrictions and caveats involved in using this feature, the main one being that you should only use it if your additional guests do not need to be constituents in your LGL account. Please read the details in this help article.

Turn on additional guest tracking

Accounts with the additional guest tracking feature will see a light blue text box in existing events that tells you whether or not additional guest tracking is turned on for the event.

To set an existing event so it has additional guest tracking, edit the event by clicking the Edit button to the upper right, and then select the checkbox to enable tracking additional guests for the event. If you're creating a brand-new event, you will similarly see the checkbox to enable additional guest tracking as you're creating the event.

Add and edit additional guests

When viewing your event, click the Actions button next to a constituent's name and then choose Add/edit guests.

Or you can click the Edit invitation option to add guests within the constituent's invitation. 

In the Add/edit guests page, click the Add another guest button:

Enter the guest's name information if you want. (You can also leave the guest unnamed.) Clicking the Show/hide details button lets you populate values for this guest for any custom fields in the event. This is helpful, for example, if you want to track meal preferences for everyone coming to the event. 

Create a constituent from an additional guest

If you click the Set constituent button (see the screenshot above), you can set your additional guest as an existing constituent, or create a new constituent record for them if they are not yet in your database. Setting the guest as a constituent is an optional step. Quite often the reason you're using guest tracking is to avoid needing to create a constituent record for the guest, but the option is there in case you do.

In the example below, Tom Aanestad is the main invitee and he is associated with two additional guests. John Doe is not a constituent in this LGL account, but Jane Johnson is. If the invitee's name is in blue text (which means it is linked), this indicates they are a constituent in your LGL account, and clicking their name will take you to their constituent record. If the name is in black text (not linked), they are not a constituent in your LGL account.

Whether an additional guest is a constituent or not, you can still track their RSVP status and custom fields (such as meal preference). However, only constituents can have gifts associated with them. If an additional guest makes a gift at your event, you will need to set them as a constituent before you can record their gift in LGL.

Print name tags

NOTE: Name tags will be printed only for constituents with an RSVP status of "Yes" or "Maybe".

Events with additional guest tracking will, in the same way as standard events do, display a Name Tags tab within the event.

In the Name Tags area, you can select which type of labels you want to print. The default options are Avery 5383 (8 labels per page) and Avery 5392 (6 labels per page). 

Within the Name Tag Block, which is the template for how your name tags will look, you can choose to use the first name, last name, organization name, or other merge fields that are generated based on the custom categories or attributes in the event.

If you need a different label template (not 8 or 6 per page), you can add a custom name tag template in the self-titled tab at the top of Fundraising > Events.

Update invitee names in order to print correct event name tags

In cases where an event guest is the spouse or domestic partner of the primary constituent and the name in the constituent record includes both names, you can update the invitee name just for your event. This makes it possible to print name tags for your event that are accurate.

To edit the invitee's name for the purposes of printing their name tags for your event, edit their invitation and hover your cursor over the name until the Edit button appears:

Print a registration sheet

You can generate a registration sheet as either a .csv (comma separated value) spreadsheet, which opens in Excel, or as a PDF file. On the left side of the light blue bar (as shown in the screenshot below), you'll see an option to restrict who shows in your results to just those who have an RSVP status of yes or maybe. This is likely the list you'll want to print for a registration sheet.

On the right side of the light blue bar (in the screenshot above), notice the Customize columns button. Customizing columns is useful if you want to include custom fields in your export, such as meal preferences.

In the spreadsheet export of this set of invitations, notice that the LGL Constituent ID is included whenever the invitee is a constituent. 

As you may have also noticed, the "Guest first name" and "Guest last name" are included in the previous screenshots. You can add these and additional columns to your onscreen view of your invitations and in the quick exports for your event by clicking the Customize columns button within your event, as shown here:

Check the box for any additional fields you want to include and save your change:

Now you'll see those columns included when you look at your event invitations and within the quick exports for your event as well.

Make bulk changes to selected constituents (but not to non-constituent guests)

It's always been possible to perform bulk actions on a selected set of constituents (such as editing categories or updating invitations) within an event. However, it is not possible to select "additional guests" who are not constituents in this scenario. The reason is that those additional guests don't have actual constituent records, so editing an event invitation or constituent categories assigned to them isn't possible.

This is also why you will see a different count for your overall search results (65 in the example below) versus the number you can select (54 in the example below). The difference between these two numbers is the exact number of additional guests you have in your event who are not themselves constituents.

If you don't use the "Additional Guests" setting in your event, what other options are there for tracking additional guests?

If you don't use the "Additional Guests" setting, you can track additional guests within the event invitation for a constituent, as shown here:

Keep in mind, you won't be able to track event-specific categories or attributes for these guests, such as meal choice. You also would not be able to print name tags.

You also have the option of creating a constituent record for each of your invitees and adding them to the event, which would preclude needing to use the Additional Guests feature at all.