Choosing a School Fundraising Company- 4 Important Considerations

School fundraising companies can literally determine the success of your school fundraiser. A great fundraising company will make the experience easy, enjoyable and profitable while a bad company can make fundraising difficult. Knowing what to consider when choosing your school fundraising company will help you to choose a great provider the first time around.

Reputation

Reputation isn’t everything, but when choosing a school fundraising provider it can be a great place to start. Look for a company that has an established reputation working with schools. You may want to talk with other schools in your area to find out which fundraising company they use. A company with a great reputation will have the skills and experience necessary to help you succeed in the fundraising process. You can also ask your fundraising company for references if you want to talk with past clients before making a commitment.

Profit Margin

Profitability is another important consideration when choosing a school fundraising provider. Each company determines the profit margin that they will offer to schools and you will find that profits can vary greatly from company to company.

Most school fundraising companies offer schools a percentage of each sale. Look for companies that offer a high percentage. Remember that fees, handling charges, shipping and other expenses can take away from your profits, so be sure to factor these expenses in when making your comparisons.

Customer Service

Fundraising can be difficult, but a great school fundraising company will help you throughout the entire process. As you compare providers pay attention to the level of customer service that you receive. Is it easy to get ahold of someone when you need help? Are the customer service agents helpful? When you encounter problems you will want a fast and reliable source of fundraising answers, so shop around until you find a fundraising company with a helpful customer service team.

Some school fundraising companies will assign each school a sales agent. This agent will work with your throughout the entire fundraising process and will be there to answer any questions that you may have. If this is important to you, make sure that this is a service that your fundraising company offers.

Product Variety

Choosing a fundraising company is a lot of work, so you won’t want to do it again the next time you plan a fundraiser. Look for school fundraising providers that offer many different types of fundraisers so that you can work with the same company each time you plan a fundraiser. Try to find a company that offers cookie dough, candy bars and treats, catalog products, magazine sales and more. A large variety of fundraisers will make choosing your next fundraiser much easier.

School fundraising companies take the worry out of school fundraising. These tips will help you to find a great provider that will help you to plan a profitable fundraiser for your school. Don’t be afraid to shop around and compare several different companies until you find the fundraising provider that is right for you.

 

 

School Fundraisers- Getting the Word Out

When you plan a school fundraiser it is important to let everyone know. The more people that know about your fundraiser, the more money you can earn for your school. Publicity is important and is a great way to increase profits. Let’s look at five ideas for letting people know about your upcoming fundraiser.

Send Home a Parent’s Letter

Parents can be a great help in school fundraising. Parents can sell your products to their friends, family and coworkers. They want their children to have the best education possible and this means that they are often more than willing to talk to others about your school fundraiser. Create a well written parent’s letter and send it home with the students before the fundraiser begins. Ask parents for their help and encourage them to spread the word about your school’s fundraiser.

Take Out an Ad

Advertising can also spread the word about your school fundraiser. You can take out an ad in a local paper or create a radio ad. These advertisements can help community members to learn about your fundraiser and to offer their support. Many times you can even find newspapers or radio stations willing to donate the cost of the advertisement so you can publicize your event without having to spend a fortune.

Work with Local Businesses

Local businesses can help you to get the word out about your fundraiser. For example if you plan a fundraiser with a local business they will spread the word about your fundraiser and you in turn will publicize their business. This helps your school while increasing profits for your school fundraiser.

Word of Mouth

Word of mouth is another great way to publicize your fundraiser. Encourage students, parents and school staff to talk about the fundraiser. The more they talk the more people will know about the fundraiser and the better able the community will be to offer support. Word of mouth is a great communication tool. Another great reason to rely on word of mouth for school fundraising publicity is that people are much more likely to support a fundraiser when they understand the purpose behind it. When parents and students talk with others about your fundraiser people will be more willing to open their wallets and support your school.

Banners and Flyers

Banners and flyers can also help your school to spread the word about their fundraiser. Have a large banner made to hang in a prominent location near the school. If your school has an electronic sign, you can also publicize the fundraiser there. In addition you can have students sit outside of local businesses with flyers for your fundraiser. This can really get the word out about your fundraiser. Make sure that you get permission before standing outside of a store to pass out flyers.

Publicity should be a primary concern as you plan a school fundraiser. These ideas will help you to inform community members about your fundraising efforts and will increase your profits. Many of these ideas are simple to implement, but pay off with big publicity rewards.

 

School Fundraising- 10 Ways to Build Student Enthusiasm

Excited students sell more and work harder to make your school fundraiser a success. Students are a key to fundraising and by building their excitement you can have a better fundraising experience. Keep reading to discover 10 ideas for building student excitement and enthusiasm before your next school fundraiser.

Establish a Purpose

Students will work harder if they understand the purpose of a fundraiser. For example if the football team is planning a fundraiser let the team know how the money will be used. Explain that the money will purchase new uniforms. When the students have a reason to work hard and when the fundraising earnings will be used for something that the students want they will work hard to sell products.

Set a Goal

Let the students know how much money is needed to achieve the fundraiser’s purpose. If the football team will need $2,000 for their uniforms, let the students know. This way they understand how much they need to sell to make the goal achievable.

Host a Motivational Meeting

Motivational meetings and assemblies can help students to get excited about a fundraiser. This is a great time to introduce the fundraiser, explain its purpose and help students realize the benefits of the fundraiser. A motivational meeting could also be held mid-way through the fundraiser to boost enthusiasm before the fundraiser ends.

Offer Prizes

Prizes and incentives can be very motivating to students. Some catalog fundraisers come with a built in incentive program. This allows your school to offer prizes to students without having to spend any extra money. You can also create an incentive program of your own. Some schools choose to hold class parties when a class achieves a goal or to offer small trinkets to students that sell products.

Update on Progress

As the fundraiser progresses let the students know how things are going. Update them on the current amount earned as well as the amount still needed to achieve the goal. As you update students they will keep the fundraiser in mind and will remain motivated to sell throughout the entire fundraising process.

Remind and Encourage

Don’t let the students forget about the fundraiser. Take opportunities to remind and encourage students. For example if you are just $100 short of achieving your goal, let the students know. This may be the motivation that they need to go out and make a few final sells.

Stay Positive

A positive attitude is essential. Even when things get difficult keep a great attitude. Students will see your attitude and will often mirror it. If you stay positive, so will the students.

Avoid Comparison

Don’t compare students. Let each student take pride in their contribution to the fundraiser whether they sell a single item or hundreds of items. Each student is different and comparison will only lead to hurt feelings and frustration.

Teach New Skills

If some students struggle with being able to sell items, you can teach them new skills. Teach students how to communicate with others and how to encourage people to buy the items that you sell. These new skills will help your students to succeed both in the fundraiser and in life.

Let Them Lead

Let students take an active role in the fundraising process. For example high school age students might be able to choose products to sell and even help with the day to day operations of the fundraiser. Being a leader will teach students new skills and will help them to take pride in the fundraiser.

School fundraisers will be more successful and more profitable when students are excited and willing to help. These ideas will help you to create a motivating environment where students are enthusiastic about fundraising.

 

Candy Bar School Fundraisers- 10 Tips for Success

Candy bar fundraisers are a fun and easy way to earn money for your school. In a candy bar fundraiser you provide students with boxes or bags of candy which they can sell to fellow students, family and friends. Candy bar fundraisers can be very profitable and are one of the easiest fundraisers to plan since you won’t have to worry about order forms or product distribution. Here are 10 tips that will help you to make your next candy bar school fundraiser a success.

Don’t Buy Too Much

Selling candy bars typically requires an upfront investment. Your school will purchase the candy and then re-sell it for a profit. Buying too much can really cut into profits since every item that you don’t sell is money lost. Before you place an order figure out how much candy you can sell and then order accordingly. Remember that you can always order more candy at a later date. It is better to run out of candy than to have too much.

Keep the Weather in Mind

Weather can really affect your candy. Hot weather can melt chocolates and rainy and wet weather can ruin candy packaging. Keep the weather in mind as you plan your fundraiser and store your candy so that it stays fresh and delicious even if it is hot or rainy outside.

Show Off Your Product

If your students carry the candy around school in easy to see bags they will sell more than if they store the candy in their backpacks. Candy is often an impulse purchase so find a way to keep your product visible. This will increase the amount of candy that you are able to sell.

Sell Everywhere

Don’t limit your candy sales to student’s family and friends. Sell candy everywhere. Students can sell candy at school, at school sporting events, around town and in many other locations. When you sell everywhere you will reach more people and in turn sell more candy.

Low Prices

Set reasonable prices for your candy. If it is more expensive to buy from you than the grocery store people will simply buy their candy somewhere else. Offering low prices will encourage people to buy from you.

Have Change Available

You don’t want to miss out on a sale simply because you don’t have change, so make sure that each candy seller has enough change available for several purchases. Restock the change as needed.

Offer Unique Treats

If you are selling unique treats that people can’t buy elsewhere, they will have to purchase from you. Try to find unique candy products like seasonal suckers, tasty chocolates and healthy treats.

Sell At School

Your school is one of the best places to sell candy. Some schools have restrictions on the types of food that can be sold. If this applies to you, consider selling healthy treats instead of candy.

Keep Track of Money

Candy sales can earn a lot of money quickly. It is a good idea to offer students a safe place to store the money that they earn and to collect earnings often. This will keep the school fundraising earnings from being lost or stolen.

Make Students Responsible

Assigning students a set amount of candy to sell is a great way to ensure that all of your candy is sold. If students are responsible for a set amount of candy they will know how much they need to sell. Each student should be responsible for the candy they are assigned.

These 10 tips are essential for planning a great candy bar fundraiser.

 

School Fundraising- Making the Most of Your Earnings

School fundraising is a lot of work, so it is important to use the money that you earn carefully. Without a plan your earnings will quickly disappear and your school won’t have much to show for all of your efforts. Here are four quick tips for maximizing the spending power of your school fundraising earnings.

Start with a Plan

Before your fundraiser even begins you should have a plan in place for the fundraising earnings. Your plan needs to be very specific. For example if your spring cookie dough fundraiser is going to earn money for your school’s music program you should decide exactly how this money will be spent. Dedicate the fundraising earnings to a specific purchase like new violins or a band field trip. Then you can determine how much money you will need to earn to achieve your goal. You can also set up a backup plan for the extra money that you may earn as well.

Stick with the Plan

Once a plan is in place you need to stick with it. Don’t use the money that you earned for new playground equipment to purchase text books or to pay for a teacher’s retreat. It is so easy to let fundraising earnings slip away by using them for other needs in the budget. If you need more money, plan another fundraiser; don’t use the money that was earned for a different purpose. When you stick to the plan you will see progress and will know where your earnings are going. When you just use school fundraising earnings like cash, they will quickly disappear and your efforts will seem like they amounted to nothing.

Maximize Your Earnings

It is important to spend every dollar carefully, whether you earn hundreds or thousands with each fundraiser. In addition to spending carefully, you can also earn more with each fundraiser which will make the money that you earn last longer and buy more. Work with reputable fundraising companies. Before signing up for any school fundraiser, carefully research each company that you are considering. Try to find a provider that can offer your organization high profit margins and a quality product. Remember that shipping charges, upfront fees and other expenses can take away from your profit potential, so keep these expenses in mind as you determine which fundraising company will bring your school the highest earnings. Once you have a great fundraiser provider in place strive to sell as much as possible as this will also increase your profitability.

Use Your Earnings Wisely

Fundraising earnings will go quickly, so find ways to make the most of every dollar you spend. If you want new playground equipment shop around and find the best prices or see if you could receive a discount by ordering other items at the same time. Also try to fulfill some needs for your school with donations. You may be able to get local businesses to donate food or gifts to a teacher appreciation lunch or school supplies for your classrooms. These donations will save your school’s money and will allow you to use your fundraising money for larger ticket purchases.

Fundraising earnings are hard earned, so make the most of them. These money saving tips will help you to make sure that each dollar you earn in the fundraising process is used to provide maximum benefit for your school.

School Fundraising- Finding Ways to Say Thank You

A school fundraiser isn’t finished when the last dollar is collected and the orders are sent out. Once your finish the actual work of the fundraiser you need to keep going a little longer and thank all those that made the fundraiser a success. Saying thank you is a great way to let the many volunteers know that you appreciate their efforts and will make it easier to find help the next time around.

Show Your Appreciation

Volunteers make fundraising possible and showing appreciation will help them to realize how much their help really means. A thank you lunch is a great way to let all of your volunteers know that help is appreciated. You can easily and affordably hold a simple thank you brunch or breakfast after each fundraiser. If this isn’t possible, a simple thank you note will also go a long way.

Give a Little Gift

Some volunteers will really go the extra mile for a school fundraiser. You might have one or two volunteers that come in every day and that work late into the night counting receipts and organizing. These special volunteers deserve special recognition. Consider asking local businesses to donate items that you can use as thank you gifts for these volunteers. Another great way to say thanks is to have students make a thank you gift. For example you could ask several classes to make one special thank you card each and then you could use these cards to thank your special volunteers.

Thank Parents

In addition to thanking your volunteers, make sure that you also let parents know that you appreciate their help. They probably helped their students to sell cookie dough or catalog items to friends and neighbors. Even if they didn’t volunteer for the fundraiser specifically, parents help a lot behind the scenes. Sending a thank you letter home with the students will help parents know that you recognize their contribution to your fundraising success. Sharing statistics from the fundraiser like total sales and total amount earned will help the parents to see that their efforts are worth it.

Don’t Forget the Students

Students are another key factor in the success of your fundraiser. Students love to receive prizes as a thank you. When you are choosing a fundraiser consider finding one that has a built in incentive program. This will encourage students to sell more and the prizes will serve as an excellent thanks once the fundraiser is complete.

Ask for Feedback

While you are saying thank you don’t forget to ask for feedback. Parents, students and other volunteers can provide you with crucial information that will help make your next fundraiser more successful. They can tell you what items sell well and which do not as well as ways to help the fundraiser to run more smoothly. Asking for this feedback is important after any fundraiser. Don’t forget that once you ask for feedback you need to remember it, so be sure to write everything down.

The things you do after a fundraiser are often just as important as the things that you do during a fundraiser. Saying thank you is a great way to say goodbye to any school fundraiser.

School Fundraising- Tips for Involving Teachers

Teachers play an important part in the educational process. They are the ones that directly teach and influence students as they work with them each day. Since teachers are so actively involved in the educational process they can be a great resource for your school fundraising efforts. Here are five helpful tips for involving teachers in the fundraising process.

Ask Them What They Need

Teachers devote huge amounts of personal time and money to their students and classrooms. They often purchase school supplies, classroom materials and more with their own money. Teachers also are aware of the many educational products available and may have a special insight into the items that would best benefit the students. Teachers don’t have to play an actual role in the fundraising process to be able to provide important information about how the money can and should be used.

Ask for Their Support

School fundraising can make a teacher’s job more difficult. Students might be excited about a fundraiser which will make it more difficult for them to listen and work. Assemblies and other fundraising related tasks can take away from classroom learning time. This can be very frustrating for teachers, so be understanding and ask for their support. Let them know that there will be a fundraiser in advance and work with them to limit classroom disruptions.

Encourage Them to Sell

Teachers often have a pool of friends, family and associates that they can easily sell to. If you are offering high quality products most people are happy to purchase from your fundraising catalogs to support your school. Ask the teachers to play an active role in the school fundraiser and to ask friends and family if they would like to make a purchase. Remember the more people you contact, the more sales you will make and the more money your school will earn. Teachers can help to increase your profits by selling to those that they know.

Invite Them to Volunteer

Teachers may also be willing to volunteer time to the school fundraiser. They can be a great help in passing out fundraising materials, working with the fundraising company and distributing products. While some teachers won’t be able to donate any extra time, many will be willing to help so be sure to invite them to help. Remember that teachers are busy. If they aren’t able to help don’t pressure them and always make good use of the time that is offered.

Get Them to Motivate

Teachers can be a great motivating influence on their students. If a teacher is supportive of a fundraiser they can encourage their students to sell and can make the fundraising process more fun. Ask your teachers what you can do to make the fundraiser more convenient for them and listen to their requests. In return they may be willing to encourage and motivate their students throughout the fundraising process. Remember that in school fundraising everyone has the same goal of providing the best education possible to the students.

School fundraising profits will increase when you are able to involve all school staff in the fundraising process. Teachers can play a critical role in making a fundraiser more successful and profitable.

Cookie Dough School Fundraiser- Tips for Easy Distribution

Cookie dough fundraisers are one of the most profitable and popular school fundraising choices, but that doesn’t mean that they aren’t without complications. Since cookie dough is a fresh product and needs to be refrigerated, distribution can be a real challenge. Here are some helpful tips that will make cookie dough school fundraiser distribution much easier.

Set a Date and a Time Early

Before your fundraiser even begins choose a date and time to distribute your cookie dough to students. This way parents will be able to plan for cookie dough pick up well in advance. Distribution will take time so plan on spending a good part of the morning or afternoon passing out dough. Be open and upfront about your selected distribution time from Day 1 so that parents know what to expect and that there aren’t any surprises when it comes time for pickup.

Remember you aren’t the only one involved in scheduling a cookie dough pickup. Make sure that you coordinate your delivery time with your school fundraising company so that you can be sure that the selected date will actually work. Publicizing the wrong date will cause more problems that simply choosing a date at the last minute, so if you want to let people know the date in advance make sure that it is right.

Stagger Pickups

Imagine 100 parents and students all showing up at the same time to pick up their cookie dough. It would be pure chaos. Staggering pickup times will allow you to quickly get parents their product. It will also help to lessen the chances of mistakes.

You can assign each grade level a specific pick up time. For example you might have the first graders and their parents pick up dough before school, the second graders come in the afternoon and the third grade classes stop by after school. Another possibility is to have parents sign up for specific pick up times that work for them. One final option is to drop dough off to student classrooms and to have parents pick it up from there.

Don’t Forget Refrigeration

Cookie dough must be refrigerated at all times. This means that you will need to put some thought into keeping the dough cold as you pass it out. Extra fridge space is the easiest option, but if this isn’t a possibility you might also be able to keep the dough cool in coolers. Parents may be willing to lend extra fridges or coolers so don’t be afraid to ask. Also encourage parents to bring coolers of their own when they pick up so that the dough will stay cold as it makes its way from the school to the purchasers. Have extra ice on hand just in case it is needed. Remind parents and students that the dough is perishable and encourage them to take it straight to purchasers.

Get Lots of Help

Volunteers will make distribution much easier. You can never have too many helpers. Volunteers can help control lines, process orders, find product and more. Remember that you need to have an organized system in place so that each order makes its way to the right parent, so limit the number of people that you have passing out the dough directly. Instead use your volunteers for other tasks like carrying orders to cars or unpacking cases of dough. Encourage parents and other volunteers to spend time making your school fundraiser a success.

Distribution is the most difficult part of a cookie dough school fundraiser, but with these helpful tips it can be much easier than you might have thought.

School Fundraising

Most schools are given a set amount of money from the state and federal government, but yet it does not cover everything that the parents and teachers want the school to do. That is where school fundraising comes in helping raise money for the extras like fields trips and after school sports.

 

There are many kinds of fundraisers from walk a thons to recycling printer cartridges. One of the most common fundraiser is food and gifts based fundraisers.  Both food and gift based fundraisers have an advantage and that is making profits predictable for each fundraiser.

 

Having products that everybody knows what they taste like makes food based fundraisers profitable and easy.  Gifts fundraisers are great for the holiday seasons.  Some schools choose to fundraise with two brochures at the same time to make sure that there is something for everyone.

 

One of the most popular foods for fundraisers is cookie dough. Everybody loves cookie dough you can either cook it or eat it raw.  Most cookie dough can be frozen for up to a year and refrigerated for a month.  The first step in starting a cookie dough fundraiser is selecting a fundraising company.  There are many factors in selecting a fundraising company like cookie dough product, time frame of your fundraiser, selling material and prize programs that you need to research before selecting a company.

Once you have selected your fundraising company all you need to do is select the kick off date, the delivery date and the brochure for your fundraiser.  You will all so have to find volunteers for helping out during the kick off and delivery.  The kick off is the start of your 2 week fundraiser. The kick off should explain how the fundraiser works, the prize involved and how to sell the goods. After two weeks, the money is collected and the order is sent to the company you have selected.

 

On the delivery date, the company brings the goods you have ordered in either a bulk or individual student shipping options.  Bulk shipping is where the goods come in boxes and you have to sort each order for the student. The other option is have the goods presorted for each student so you do not need to.  With bulk shipping there is the potential that your volunteers may fulfill the orders incorrectly.  This can leaving you with too much or too little products, when your parents come to pick up their orders. The parents then deliver the goods to their family and friends that ordered. And the fundraiser is complete.  Reminding the parents that their orders are in and they need to be picked up is one of the more frustrating parts of the fundraiser.

 

On delivery of the order, you will pay the company and you keep the rest. Typically you can increase your profit margins by booking your fall and spring fundraisers at the same time. You can also increase your margins by preferring bulk shipping over student shipping.

 

Fundraisers may not be the most pleasant activity in the world but it helps out your school and the students.  It allows the school to continue offering activities that the students are interested in like music, fieldtrips and extracurricular activities that you know are important to developing well rounded students.