I certainly don’t profess to be the ‘master’ at fundraising, but I have completed two successful fundraisers for my girls to go to Girl’s Camp over the past three years. The first fundraiser was kind of a trial run for me, but it turned out extremely well! The one we just completed was extremely successful as well. I’ve come up with a few fundraiser tips for someone just starting fundraising.
- Find a good cause. First and foremost, in order to fundraise for anything you have to have a good cause that will make people want to give you their hard-earned money.
- Sell something that will make money and give donors something they want. If you have a product or service you are selling to raise funds, but it costs more than what you are selling it for, then there’s no point in selling that item or service. Don’t count the amount of time you spend conducting the fundraiser, just the physical materials you need to make or do whatever it is you’re selling.
- Get lots of people involved. The more people involved in selling the product or service, the greater your chances will be to raise more money.
- Create a good story. You have to let people know what the money will be used for; otherwise, they won’t buy what you’re selling.
- Sell everywhere. There are tons of places you can go to sell your product or service. Personally, I sell for fundraisers at work, if possible I stand out in front of a grocery store (i.e. Stater Brothers), and I sell at church and to friends.
- Ask everyone. If you don’t ask, then they won’t buy.
- Social Media. Don’t forget about the social media. Get the word out, especially if you are going to host an event to raise money. Send out invitations online through Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, text, and email. Get to as many people as possible to raise awareness and increase your participation to raise money.
- Know your deadlines. You need to set a deadline for selling and collecting the funds from your contributors. If you leave the deadline open, then you won’t have as much support. Also, give yourself enough time to really get the word out about the fundraiser. Depending on what you are selling, your timeframe could be anywhere from 2 weeks to 2 months.
- Document. Make sure you keep detailed documentation about who purchased what, how much, if they paid, when they are going to pay, and where you contacted this donor lead from.
- Get the product or service out. Make sure you make good on your deadline promise to your donors. If you don’t, then they won’t donate again in the future. If you promise to have something to them by a certain date make sure you follow-through. If you can’t, then make sure you update the donor as to the new date you’ll have their product or service.
- Review. Once the fundraiser is completed make sure you review how much you made versus your goal, where you received the most donors from, what worked in regard to the pitch to sell it so you can determine best practices for that type of fundraiser in the future.
Have you conducted fundraising in the past? What additional tips do you have?