School fundraisers are a necessity when it comes to funding group activities, equipment purchases and a variety of things your classroom or team may need. It can be a challenge to keep things fresh, with a repetitive need to fundraise often, especially if you are doing more than one in a school year or even a semester. How do you keep your student sellers interested? How to make your fundraiser stand out from all the rest? What type of fundraiser, where and when to have it? All of these may be questions you have while looking for your next big profit maker.
No matter the type of fundraiser you choose to do, there are some general guidelines to go by and do to set yourself up for a great and profitable fundraiser. First off, make your fundraiser known. Advertise around town or the venue with signs that state where, when and the purpose of your fundraiser. Be concise in the text you choose to place on your materials as you want it to be a quick and easy read. Getting a shout out in your local paper is also a great way to let the community know where to find you. Secondly, staff your fundraiser accordingly. If you are setting up somewhere, make sure you have an appropriate number of people on hand to run your table or area. Have a sign up sheet for students to take shifts each day or over a span of days so everyone can participate. If you will need parental assistance, be sure to send out notifications well in advance with schedules and times. Thirdly, on the day(s) of your fundraiser make yourself known! Get balloons and other decor to put around your area, even if you do not have a table. Have signs up or students wielding signs to help get patrons attention.
Athletic Event Fundraising
Fall sports are in full swing and what goes better with sports than snacks and a cheering section!? Having a table setup adjacent to the stands is great to catch patrons entering and leaving, putting you front and center in their line of sight. If you are a sports team, wearing your uniforms can help draw people over and make it more apparent that you are fundraising for the team.
Musical and Theater Fundraising
If you are a part of a theater or musical group that puts on shows, then use your captive audience and already established event(s) as a base for your fundraiser. Consult the venue you play in prior to your fundraiser about their rules on food. If they do not allow snacks inside the theater, see if you can put up a table or small booth prior to the show, during intermission and after the show. This will give early arrivals something to snack on while conversing before taking their seats. Those leaving may want a little treat for the way home. If they do allow snacks inside you may want to consider sticking with a candy, cookie or otherwise quiet treat fundraiser. Crunchy chips may be distracting to others in the audience or performers on stage.
With autumn upon us, craft shows are popping up each weekend, and one might even be at your school. See if you can set up a concessions stand near the entrance or exit to catch patrons entering and leaving. Make sure your table is clearly defined by decorations and signs to stand out from the craft booths, and it is apparent you are a part of the school. Having defined prices and your group name/affiliation can also be beneficial in pulling in customers.
Other Event Fundraisers
If you have access to an auditorium or other location with projector capabilities, consider hosting a movie night complete with concession stand. You can also host a trivia night and have a snack station setup in addition to your entry fees. If you are thinking of taking your fundraiser off campus, look around town for community events, fairs and other sponsored nights. Your group could be a part of these. Events held on weekends tend to draw the biggest crowds.