As you gear up for your next school fundraiser, consider doing things differently this time. Making a little bit of extra effort to modify your fundraising strategy could pay off in the form of higher fundraising numbers and wider profit margins overall.
It might not be as difficult as it sounds. Small changes to your strategy may have a big, profitable impact down the road.
The key is consistency. You must implement each of these 11 tips with consistency to maximize your profit. In isolation, each helps a little. Together, they represent a powerful potential boost to your fundraising figures.
Some may come as second nature. You may be doing a few already. Others will require more effort and planning. All are achievable though. And there’s not a second to waste. Here’s to your most successful school fundraiser yet.
1. Start Planning Earlier Than You Think You Should
Your fundraiser is not likely to be successful (by your standards or any others) without careful advance planning that begins earlier than you think necessary. If you are not familiar with the elements of a strong strategic plan, review this guide by the Dummies platform for pointers that you can implement within your own fundraising team.
2. Use High-Profit Fundraising Products That Community Members Actually Want
Think about the products and services for which you would willingly pay more to raise money for organizations you care about. Then, structure your fundraiser to give your donors the opportunity to do the same.
One way to do this is to invest in high-profit fundraising products that you know your fellow parents and community members want. Use a fundraising distribution platform like ABC Fundraising to distribute high-profit, in-demand products to the fundraisers in your network. You’ll move far more product, your fundraising network will take in far more money, and you could earn a significant profit for yourself. Click here for more information about this opportunity. Click here for more information about this opportunity.
3. Host a Signature Event That Draws A Big Crowd
Think about the school events that tend to do well in your community: talent shows, student concerts, friendly sporting events featuring faculty and staff, and so on.
Now, think about what it would take to harness one of those events to turbocharge your fundraising campaign. Then, set about making it happen. You can do it with enough help from your fellow parents.
4. Let Your Students Lead the Way If They’re Old Enough
Your students could help too if they are old enough. High school-age kids are fully capable of leading their own fundraising efforts under careful supervision from parents with fundraising experience. This is an excellent way to make your students feel as if they are a vital part of the effort, rather than merely being its beneficiaries.
5. Meet Your Best Donors Where They Congregate
Based on prior experience, you most likely can make an educated guess about who your best donors are going to be. They tend to be parents with kids involved in the organizations you are raising funds for as well as highly engaged parents and other adult boosters committed to the success of those organizations or initiatives.
You also know where to find these donors: at school sporting events, parent-teacher association meetings, evening events such as school plays and concerts, and cultural events around the community.
6. Table at Your Local Supermarket
One place where you are sure to find high-probability donors is your local supermarket (because just about everybody in town visits the local supermarket from time to time). Ask store management for permission to set up a table outside during peak shopping periods, such as weekend afternoons and early weekday evenings.
7. Create a Secure, Easy to Use Online Fundraising or Donation Page
This is a great job for a tech-inclined student volunteer. Have them create a secure, user-friendly donation website or app to make it easier for potential donors to give online, in their own time.
8. Use a Fundraising Thermometer to Track Your Progress
A fundraising thermometer is a visual representation of your fundraising campaign’s progress. It can be digital (on a dedicated fundraising website) or in-person (on your school grounds or another common area in town). Ideally, it should be both.
9. Host Multiple Small Events Throughout Your Campaign and Delegate Fundraising Responsibilities
Designate multiple “fundraising captains” and give them authority to host small events, like house parties, to increase your fundraising campaign’s reach and revenue. Because not everyone will make it to your signature event, it’s important to provide alternatives.
10. Put Your Own Money Where Your Mouth Is
As the leader of a major school fundraising effort, you have no excuse not to donate generously to your own cause. Your fellow parents will be more inclined to join you when they see that you are putting your money where your mouth is.
11. Learn As You Go and Don’t Be Afraid to Admit You Were Wrong
Fundraising is a learning process. Don’t ever be afraid to change course when a strategy fails to work, nor to admit that you were wrong for proposing it in the first place. Over time, your fundraising outcomes will improve — to everyone’s benefit.
Ace Your Next School Fundraiser Without Breaking a Sweat
If you are able to consistently implement these 11 tips for a better, more successful school fundraiser, you have a very good chance of raising more than you have ever raised before. Without breaking a sweat.
It won’t be as easy as it sounds. Each of these tips asks something of you, be it a change to the fundraising strategy you have used in the past or modifications to your daily routine while the fundraiser is ongoing (which may or may not become permanent after its conclusion).
Just like any project, implementing your new fundraising plan will require flexibility and foresight, two things parents don’t always have the luxury of having.
But, as a parent, you know deep inside that you are capable of great and surprising things. Your next school fundraiser is a golden opportunity for you to show your fellow parents and broader school community what you are made of. If all goes well, your next fundraiser could stand as a shining example for future efforts in your school and beyond. That would truly be a success.