How to take advantage of local PTA conventions
Some schools select their fundraiser before they get out of school for the summer so they don’t have to worry about it when they get back. However many hold off until the summer PTA conventions. School fundraising companies use these conventions to draw decision makers into their booth in order to share information about their latest programs.
As a result, sponsors often hold off on making their fundraiser decisions until they’ve been to their state’s convention. It’s a great opportunity to see several new ideas all in one location. Many simply walk by and collect information packets; however how can you get more out of your encounter with these companies?
Here are some things that can make finding a fundraiser at your summer PTA convention more productive.
Narrow Down Your Fundraising Options
Before you even leave for your summer convention, have an idea of the type of fundraiser that you might be interested in. Narrowing down your options allows you to determine what companies to focus on at the convention. This will allow you to use your free time in the convention hall much more efficiently.
Plan Your Questions Ahead of Time
Just as fundraising companies know what they can and can’t do, make sure you understand what your needs are as well. Many are reluctant to approach vendor booths because they’re afraid of someone trying to sell them something. Yet, if you’re prepared and already know what you’re looking for, you can ask specific questions instead of simply being persuaded by the sales rep. This can make for a much more productive 2-way encounter.
What Are Your Fundraising Objectives?
Does your school need to raise a lot of money or are you more interested in providing a learning experience for your students as they fundraise? Because there will be several companies offering different types of programs, you’ll need to understand that many also focus on other things besides raising money, like providing an educational experience.
Jogathons are a one example of a fundraiser that also provides a health benefit. However, programs like these often place more of an emphasis on the experience itself than raising money. Plus, these types of programs tend to require more work to coordinate. Keep in mind that most companies will tell you that you can have both as long as you work with them, but this is not always the case.
With that said, there are some programs that are designed to place an emphasis on raise money first, then second, enhancing the student experience. For instance, our big event fundraising programs offer a party or show as a reward for selling out of their brochure.
Without some idea of what you’re looking for, you’ll simply end up with a lot of fundraising packets to filter through. By having a game plan in advance, you’ll make your decision making process much easier.