How to find the right product for your group
This is the million dollar question that everyone wants the answer to. It seems that sponsors are constantly in search of the best fundraiser possible for their school. In other words, which one will customers like the most and thus improve sales?
Many sponsors focus primarily on what to sell but not enough emphasis is placed on other things that are just as important, like figuring out how to actually get their students to make more sales.
Perhaps what sponsors should really be asking themselves is are we prepared to have a strong sale regardless of what we’re selling? Then, being able to add in a better brochure becomes icing on the cake.
Here are some things that schools should consider that may end up having an even greater impact on your sales results than the type of fundraiser you choose.
Should Group Size Matter?
For the most part, the size of the group shouldn’t matter when it comes to choosing the best fundraiser possible. One thing that smaller groups should be aware of is whether the program their considering has certain order minimums.
Determining whether they can meet any possible order requirements can easily be determined by setting a reasonable sales goal for each seller, then multiplying that by the total number of sellers. This can especially come into play if a group is considering selling frozen items like pies or cookie dough.
See our fundraiser goal setting guide
What about the Age of Your Students?
Age shouldn’t matter, especially when the parents are involved in the selling. However, some products do seem to work better with high school students than with younger sellers. These are items that may require some explaining to the customer prior to the purchase, like discount cards.
Who are Your Buyers Going to Be?
Before choosing a product to sell consider things like price and where it will be sold. For example, students who plan to sell on campus to their peers are probably going to be better off selling an inexpensive item in the one to two dollar range.
When selling off campus, you should consider the socioeconomics of your immediate community.
Good Leadership Makes Great Fundraisers
School fundraisers are only as good as the people in charge. You can think that you’re offering the best product in the world but if you don’t lead and inspire your group, you probably won’t be successful.
Motivating Your Students to Sell
This is as important as choosing the right sales brochure. If your sellers are properly motivated they can probably sell anything to anyone. You should think about how you plan to motivate them both during as well as after your sale.
See our additional fundraising incentive ideas
Before you think you’ve found the best fundraiser for your group, make sure you’ve also thought through the other important details as well. After all, if your sale is set up correctly, you should be able to sell snow to an Eskimo.
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Clay Boggess has been designing fundraising programs for schools and various nonprofit organizations throughout the US since 1999. He’s helped administrators, teachers, and outside support entities such as PTAs and PTOs raise millions of dollars. Clay is an owner and partner at Big Fundraising Ideas.