It may be surprising that there are a lot schools out there that simply do a school fundraiser just because it’s that time of the year and that’s just when they always do it. If you ask them why they are doing a fundraiser their answer is almost always the same. They are raising money for the ‘general fund’. They then go on to explain that their students, staff and parents are used to it that way and it almost runs on autopilot. The fundraising kickoff is performed, the students take home their packets and the selling begins. Orders and money are turned in, the orders are processed and the merchandise is shipped. If they have no real major problems then they go back and do the same thing next year with the same fundraising company.
The same old adage applies, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it!” And let’s face it, the least amount of work that we have to put into the school fundraiser the better, right? After all, no one really wants to fundraise. To top it off they hope to achieve the same results year after year. The main reason it seems to work generally well for them is because the students are excited about the chance to win prizes and thus they are able to successfully persuade their parents to sell a few items so that they can win something. Parents often feel obligated to sell because they don’t want their child to not get a prize that their peers may be getting. They may also be doing it because they feel a small sense of obligation to help out the school that their child attends.
However, on average, fundraising groups that take the time to define and promote a purpose are usually far more successful than those who are simply raising money for the ‘general fund’. The reason is that people are more confident supporting something that has a specific purpose behind it and if they can understand the reason behind the purpose the more they are likely to support it. This is especially true if they have been convinced that the purpose is necessary through previous promotional efforts. Let’s face it; you want your school fundraiser to be as successful as possible, right? After all, how many fundraisers do you want to have to do before you reach your yearly budget goals?
Here are some things that you may want to consider when it comes to developing, implementing and promoting of your purpose:
The bottom line is the more people that you can convince that your school fundraising purpose is important and necessary the more successful your sale is going to be.