Why you need extra incentives and how to leverage them
School fundraisers tend to do better when additional incentives are used. If you only rely on the regular prize program to motivate your students, you're probably not doing enough. There are basically two places your students will see these prizes. The first is at the kickoff and the second is inside their packet. Once the hype of the kickoff is over, many have already forgotten about them.
Assuming you've bought into the idea of using additional incentives, like top seller prizes or prize drawings, don’t you want to get the most out of them? If you want to maximize sales for your school, you're going to have to do more by creatively engaging your sellers.
How you motivate them is as important as what you motivate them with. Once your fundraiser is over is not the time to wish that you had done more. What follows are some creative ways you can implement your incentives:
Make Your Prize Incentives Visible
- Wheel your additional prizes into the lunch room on a cart so students can see them close up. If possible, walk up and down each aisle so that everyone can get close to the prizes.
- If your school does video announcements, you'll want to make sure your prizes are on display behind the presenter as they're talking about them.
- Make sure these prizes are on display in a place where parents can see them as well.
- Put them in the office where everyone can see them, or place them in a display case.
- Make sure everyone can see the prizes but make sure they are secured.
- Don’t forget to make special signs for your prizes if they'll be in a display case or on morning video announcements like ‘Top Seller Prize’ or ‘Grand Prize’.
Advertise Your Daily Prize Drawings
- If you're incorporating daily prize drawings, don’t forget to have a nicely decorated drawing box placed in a strategic location.
- It will also be important to have a sign above it that says ‘drawing box’.
- Or better yet, have a parent volunteer hold the box as the students are walking into the school.
- They can ask them questions like, “Have you sold enough to turn in your coupon today?” This person should also announce to the students when the drawing will take place for that day.
- If you can convince them to dress up as a special character or in some school-related theme, that can add to the excitement.
- Don’t just announce the winners each day, have them come up and claim their prize in front of everyone.
- If you don’t have a morning assembly where everyone is together at one time, do it during lunch.
- If you do morning announcements on video, don’t be afraid to have the winners come to the video location to claim their prize on camera as everyone watches. This will inspire others to sell so that they will also have a chance to win as well.
Promote Your Fundraising Incentives
- Get creative by convincing a group of volunteers to make posters advertising your incentives and place them around your school for all to see.
- Send notices home to parents reminding them about your incentives and how the students can win
- Advertise your top seller prize on the school marquee and then, once the fundraiser is over, place the winner’s name up there for everyone to see.
- Make sure your daily announcements over the intercom are interesting and creative. Don’t just announce that there is a fundraiser going on and to ‘please get out there and sell’. This information by itself is boring and will not get much of a response from your students. Instead, insert additional one-line sentences that really engage the students. These one-liners can be short and to the point like, “How many of you have sold enough to win the ___________________?” or “How many of you have already reached your sales goal?” or “Who thinks they're going to be the top seller in the school? Does everyone remember what the top seller prize is?"
Effectively incorporating your additional incentives into your school fundraiser is going to take some work, but the potential results should make it well worth it.