You’re a newly formed PTA and possibly wondering what you should do for your first fundraiser. Should you start off with a bang and offer something new and trendy? Or perhaps you should sell an already established product line that people in your community are already familiar with.
As you can imagine, there are advantages and disadvantages to presenting unique items that haven’t been tried before. One advantage is that you may stand out and, if your product is good enough, people will spread the word.
The downside however is that it may be risky, especially since your group is new and you may be inexperienced at fundraising. By selling unique items, you may end up niching yourself too much, and thus narrowing your market. Here are some other things to consider.
Proven vs. New Fundraisers
Proven products will be familiar to most buyers but they’re also sold quite a bit already by many groups. Many school fundraising companies recommend going with a tried and true product line as a first sale, especially for new groups; however, it’s important to pick a time when others schools aren’t selling. This can sometimes be easier said than done. But since newly formed groups are often overwhelmed trying to get a handle on other things, the established fundraiser does help eliminate some potential uncertainties. Then once you get some experience under your belt you can consider other riskier but potentially more lucrative options.
Conduct a Buyer Survey
Before you decide on your first fundraiser, find out what was sold previously at your school. And if possible, go back at least 5 years. Perhaps you’ll find out about a sale that several people liked but for whatever reason got lost in the shuffle.
If you really want to do your due diligence, conduct a survey by asking your parents what they’d like to sell. They may be tired of selling the same thing year after year and a change may be in the works. It’s also a good idea to find out what other schools in your area are selling. Your local PTA council can also be a great resource.