Follow these best practices to bring in the dough.
The fundraising potential of cookie dough is unlimited. Approximately 68% of US households have cookies in their cabinets, and Americans eat 300 cookies yearly!
The cookie dough fundraiser for schools is a classic that everyone loves. Families appreciate the convenience and variety of flavors, while school groups gush over the potential to raise lots of money. One elementary school PTO in Waconia, Minnesota, sold over $100K in dough! The school now relies on its cookie dough sale as its only annual fundraiser.
Groups need to follow tried and true fundraising strategies to reach all the cookie lovers in their school community and beyond. For instance, we found that school groups that host cookie dough sales around Thanksgiving make the most profit. (There is nothing better than a cookie binge over the holidays.) Other schools have the most success selling before and after school when students feel especially hungry.
Keep reading below for our top 5 tips so you can have your best cookie dough fundraiser ever:
1. Choose the product that's right for your school
Knowing your audience makes a huge difference in landing sales. Which name brands will appeal best to your school community? Mrs. Fields® cookie dough offers ten classic flavors like Milk Chocolate Chip, Snickerdoodle, Caramel Apple Crunch, Oatmeal Raisin, and White Chocolate Macadamia Nut. Schools also love Otis Spunkmeyer® cookie dough for its great taste, quality, and familiarity.
Learn why Otis Spunkmeyer is America's favorite cookie dough.
Or, if your customers prefer a good deal over a name brand, we offer cookie dough fundraiser tubs starting at just $14. Our 14 Dollar Dough features six classic flavors: chunky chocolate chip, white chocolate macadamia, and Snickerdoodle.
PTO Today names teamwork one of the essential ingredients for a school cookie dough fundraiser. They suggest that sales teams "enlist everyone, including your principal, in your school's fundraiser." Teamwork helps get everyone motivated and excited.
Cultivate team spirit by setting goals, monitoring progress, and making decisions together. For older students, healthy competition can spark conversation and enthusiasm.
3. Take your fundraiser online
Instead of selling out of a brochure, your group can raise money virtually. Is your group only able to sell online? See our virtual cookie dough fundraiser.
Online fundraising can raise three times more than in-person-only selling! Students can sell to their grandparents across the country and stay safe in the age of COVID with online fundraisers.
Keep in mind that if you choose to show a brochure, you can also sell it online. This works well because you give your sellers two ways to fundraise.
4. Offer incentives and celebrate successes
School fundraisers celebrating success with incentives consistently perform better than fundraisers without incentive programs. That's why we offer free cash and traditional prizes for students of all ages.
After the sale, we add the total cash amount to the group's profit check. Or, if the team chooses a traditional prize plan, we ship prizes to the group's address. Prizes arrive packed by the seller.
Are you looking for other creative ideas that can also boost sales? Incentives can include challenges, special privileges, gift cards, recognition, events, and more.
5. Educate your sellers
Knowledgeable cookie dough salespeople make all the difference in closing the deal. Do your research and encourage your students to do the same. Interested customers need to get their questions answered quickly to keep their interest.
Our website has many resources for organizing fundraisers for schools, students, and parents. In addition, our cookie dough page answers FAQs, explains how the fundraiser works, and offers tips and tricks.
When you sign up for a cookie dough fundraiser, each student receives a catalog, order form, and prize flyer. We also provide a participant information letter with step-by-step instructions.
When you properly equip your sellers, they can succeed. And when your school is united behind a well-thought-out plan, there is no reason why your cookie dough sales can't exceed your expectations.
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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.