1. Promote Before You Begin to Fundraise
As any big business or politician will tell you, raising funds begins with raising awareness. As a school, we’re going to bet that your audience will know who you are, but a great way to establish yourself as a worthy recipient of funds is to promote what you’ve done (or, are planning to do!).
Promoting before you kick off your fundraiser will raise awareness about your group, get support and create excitement where you want it most: in parents, community members and students.
2. Aim for 1-2 BIG Fundraisers a Year
Rather than pepper your school year with many small fundraisers, asking for a little help from students, parents and faculty (but asking it often), try for 1-2 big fundraisers over the course of the year (maybe one in the fall & one in the spring).
Here’s why BIG Fundraising is the way to go:
- Brings in the big money. A larger fundraiser, like an event-based Fun Run, is going to take more effort than a bake sale, but it’s also going to bring in bigger funds. These events garner a lot of hype and involvement from the community, making them appropriate for seeking corporate donations.
- Includes everyone. Larger fundraisers are not possible without the involvement of students, teachers, staff, parents, & community members. Rather than just relying on PTO members to volunteer and donate resource, event-based fundraisers are managed by the PTO but put into action by everyone involved with the school.
- Gets it done in one. PTO groups spend an unfair amount of time fundraising. It comes with the territory, but we think it’s time to expand our horizons. By having 1-2 big fundraisers a year, you can meet your budgetary goal and make more room for doing what you love: interacting with your school and making a difference where it counts!
4. Include Post-Event Student Incentives
Fact: We typically see 20% of donations brought in on the day of the fundraising event and 10% or more after the event. Donators will send in money after your event if you 1) are transparent about how much is still needed to reach your goal, and 2) offer an incentive for students (or donators, if you can).
Here are ideas for post-event incentives:
- A printed group picture of everyone from the fundraising event
- A free t-shirt from your event (with the title and year on it)
- A reward for next year’s fundraiser (if it is an annual event)
- 100% or 50% matching gift for all donations turned in post-event