Leverage customers as extensions of your sales team
Nothing is a better stamp of approval on your school fundraising products than the words of a satisfied customer. People in the community who participate in your school fundraiser through purchasing products can offer a valuable and compelling perspective that can inspire more sales and drive higher profits.
Incorporate fundraising and selling strategies into your campaign that turn customers into ambassadors for your school. Ambassadors are people who are willing to lend themselves to your mission by telling others about the good work you’re doing and encouraging them to participate as well. School fundraising ambassadors will share your product or brochure fundraising program in their own networks.
As advocates for your cause and products, ambassadors can be a powerful way to exponentially grow your customer base, retain customers over time, and create effective messaging that leads to more sales.
Grow Your School Fundraising Customer Base
Think of school fundraising ambassadors as a physical LinkedIn network. Each new connection will invariably grow your network. By growing your network, you’re able to go beyond familiar family and friend circles to make new connections.
Before you begin selling, create a prospect list of close family friends, coworkers, or relatives who are shoe-in customers. Then, select a handful who you can ask to connect you with just three more people they know who would be willing to support a school fundraiser and help improve outcomes in education. You can simply ask that they connect you or your parent with a simple introductory email explaining your school’s mission and sharing a bit about your fundraising options.
If you start with just 5 close connections who are willing to vouch for your excellent school fundraising brochure, you can add 15 new potential customers to your sales base in no time. The warm introduction will increase the likelihood of making a sale.
Retain Customers Over Time
Converting customers to ambassadors (officially or otherwise) inherently increases one’s level of engagement with your school fundraiser. Adding new ways for customers to be a more involved part of your mission is a proven strategy to get long-term buy-in and retain customers.
Customers who support your cause through purchasing likely have a personal passion for you mission. Many in your community may even see supporting local schools as a responsibility. Asking customers who make a purchase to share their passion with others can help them feel that they are making an even greater contribution to something they’ve financially supported. Challenge yourself to see asking for their continued support through advocating for your fundraiser as a benefit, not burden. You’d be surprised at how much donors will feel appreciated by the chance to be a more integral part of supporting your school.
Create Effective School Fundraising Messaging
Perhaps one of the greatest benefits that elevating customers to ambassadors offers is the chance to get real people to share about the quality products they purchased in supporting your fundraiser.
Once your products have been delivered, see if any of your customers are willing to be photographed with and quoted in a review about their product. Have them share about the quality, affordable purchase they made, as well as why it was important for them to support your school fundraiser.
When next year’s school fundraising program rolls around, you’ll have personal testimonials to use in any promotional materials you produce. Folks will appreciate the chance to hear about what they can purchase, and they’ll be motivated to buy items themselves.
Make the investment in converting customers to ambassadors. You’ll be glad you did when that bottom line improves for years to come.