YES, we think so. In this economy, every organization is watching their bottom line. This is especially true for school groups. Budgets are being slashed and many groups are struggling to run at the levels they are accustomed to. Too often we’re reading about sports programs being dropped, school field trips being cancelled, teaching positions being cut, and so on and so forth. In many cases, fundraising is a necessity for a group’s survival.
But, is product fundraising the right fit in your community? The short answer is that it depends. Every situation is unique and some may be better fit than others. The real benefit of these fundraisers is that there are no upfront costs involved. These fundraisers are pre-ordered fundraisers that are sold off of a catalog. So you do the selling first (usually 2 – 3 weeks), then you place the order. This limits the upfront financial exposure for groups. So groups that are new, or have no money in their accounts, can start from scratch without paying for the product upfront. The old adage is that “it cost money to make money”, but product fundraising is the exception.
Tips for Running a Product Fundraiser
- Make sure that there are not many other product fundraisers being run at the same time.
- Ask students, parents and teacher which products they would like to see being offered.
- Quality of the product sold is essential. It’s easier said than done, but avoid junk. Use established fundraising companies that have a good reputation for their product quality.
- Set a firm selling period. 2 weeks is the standard selling time.
- Keep your community informed with the details of the fundraiser with parent letters, web postings, emails and school announcements.
- Don’t over do it with the fundraising. Fundraising fatigue is a real issue that should be avoided.