When Should You Start a School Fundraiser?

We recently received an email from a sponsor informing us that their sale didn’t go as well as she had hoped. She discovered that the parents didn’t want to sell late in their season.

As groups prepare for their sale, we focus on helping them select the right brochure for their supporters, choose an appropriate prize program that motivates their sellers, prepare for their kickoff and track their progress.

However, knowing when to actually start a sale you should know best. We assume that groups already know the best time to have their sale. Knowing when to start a school fundraiser is critical. So, before you consider any type of sales project, you should consult with others to make sure that everyone’s on the same page.

School Fundraisers are Seasonal

One thing to consider is whether your group is only together for a season, or if it’s year-round. If you are only together for a short period, you may be better off starting a sale at the beginning of your season when everyone’s excited and eager. However if your group is together throughout the year then you have more flexibility. For example, some high school sports groups attempt to raise money in the off season so it doesn’t interfere with their competition. On the other hand, many groups feel that they are better able to fundraise during their season when everyone is together and focused on their mission.

3 Fundraising Group Examples

Sports Teams
For the most part, sports teams have their sales during their season; however some teams have a booster club that is responsible for organizing year around events. During the offseason players may be more available to sell than they might be during the season.

Elementary Schools
Elementary schools typically start their fall fundraiser early because they are trying to be the first ones out selling in their community. The disadvantage to starting early in the season is many schools also have the same idea. In addition, parents may still be burdened with purchasing school supplies; so waiting is also fairly common.

Cheerleader Groups
We have found that the best time for cheerleaders to sell is right after the new squad has been selected. This is usually towards the end of the school year in preparation for the upcoming fall. The excitement level is high and there may be several new members who will be motivated to participate in a sales event.

Finding the right time to start a school fundraiser is important because your members will need to be completely focused on your group and its goals.

See our brochure fundraisers

Join the discussion