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Set Higher Fundraising Goals with Better Sales Data

By Clay Boggess on Dec 9, 2010
Set Higher Fundraising Goals with Better Sales Data

How to use previous sales data to impact your next fundraiser

Every sponsor wants their sale to succeed. The problem is, most don’t know how to quantify their results. Success becomes subjective when it should be objective. Most sponsors only looks at the end result. If they happen to be happy with the amount raised, then they've succeeded. They may be excited because they were able to reach or even beat last year’s mark. Or, they may be disappointed because they may have fallen short.

Looking only at the final sales number is a subjective approach to determining your results. It doesn’t give you the entire story. Instead, you should be analyzing your results in more detail. You need to look at why you ended up raising that amount. For instance, let’s say that you had 500 students in your school and you were able to raise $20,000. This would mean each seller would have sold about 4 items each. If on the other hand, a school of 800 students brought in the same amount, each seller would have averaged 2.5 items each. Clearly, the first school performed better.

The ultimate objective is to better understand your results so you can better impact future sales. Here are 2 measurements you should be tracking that will help you set higher fundraising goals.

1. Fundraising Participation Percentage

Knowing this is important because it tells you how many students actually participated in your fundraiser. And you don’t just want to just look at how many students sold something, but rather the percentage. For example, if you had 200 students actually sell, that number by itself doesn't mean all that much. However, if your school enrollment was 800, having 200 participants wouldn't be as impressive as it would for a school with 350 students. By analyzing this number you can determine how effective you were at marketing and promoting your school fundraiser. How enthusiastic were your students at you kickoff? What did you do to remind them to sell during the sale?

2. Brochure Items Sold per Seller

80% participation sounds great until you found out that each student averaged less than 3 items sold. Seller productivity is also important. Think about the potential impact on your fundraiser. For instance, if you were able to get 400 students to sell an average of 3 items per student, you would have brought in around $12,000. However, if you were able to raise your seller average by just 1 item, your sale would have increased to $16,000. That’s a $4,000 increase. One question to ask is how effective were your incentives? Did many students reach higher prize levels? How attractive were your additional incentives?

Once you better understand your current results, you'll be able to make any needed improvements. Being able to set higher fundraising goals in the future will then become more realistic.

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