We talk to hundreds of PTA/PTO groups at trade shows and share fundraising stories. Some successful, others, not so much. Many of the latter stories have a common theme. The "donate now" button on the PTA or school website gets little or no activity, in addition, they have difficulty with campaign participation for athletic fundraisers like walks, runs or rides.
Less than successful fundraisers usually have one thing in common; they don't have the resources or experience to effectively manage their fundraising campaign.
HINT: Many online fundraising programs are centered around individual participants. Our program is designed to empower event administrators with the resources to manage your campaign, boost participation and increase donations.
Properly managing your campaign with the right tools and strategy may boost your proceeds by 30% or more. Here's how!
1. Create a sense of urgency: Hard dates and looming deadlines are important for creating a "do it now" attitude in your participants.
Count backwards from your event date, final turn-in date, weekly turn-in dates and a kickoff to create your official campaign schedule. Once scheduled and posted on your website, you have a plan. Follow your plan and communicate key dates to your participants.
2. Communicate Your Event: Announce your event through social media, blogs, web pages, emails and fliers.
If you create a Pride Page through Pride Fundraising, email your page and pledge codes to each participant as often as possible to maximize your fundraising results.
Your Pride Page will earn money in two ways.
1. Business Sponsors who donate to your group will receive added value when they receive community awareness on your Pride Page - they may even donate more if given the opportunity to post their company logo. Many groups earn $2,000 - $5,000 a year in business donations. This page will be seen by thousands of community members throughout your campaign and it's a great value for local businesses.
2. Online Donations - The "Donate Now" button raises money for participants with pledge codes. Online donations will roll in when you encourage participants to share your fundraising Pride Page and Pledge Code via email, Facebook, blogs or other social networking mediums. This is a great tool for low income neighborhoods to raise donations outside their neighborhood!
HINT: You may only have three or four weeks to drive your fundraising campaign, so don't be afraid to use the tools at hand to regularly email fundraising updates and Pledge Codes to your participants.
3. Motivate Your Participants: Fundraising is a numbers game, the more participants playing the game, the greater your participation and resulting donations.
Increase the excitement and make your campaign even more fun by holding drawings and giving away great prizes.
HINT: Use your Pride Page during the planning phase to trade hot links and advertising space for cash donations or in-kind contributions such as food or merchandise.
During your campaign your Pride Page will be seen weekly by hundreds of parents and thousands of friends and family. It's a great place for local businesses to advertise!
Unlike catalog sales, you have total control of how you motivate students and classrooms. Start with an exciting kickoff and then hold weekly turn-ins of collection envelopes. Award prizes to individuals and classrooms based on criteria you choose.
HINT: Prizes displayed at your kickoff are a carrot intended to boost participation and increase donations. Donated prizes are best, however, in lieu of donations, a few hundred dollars invested in prizes will yield thousands of dollars in additional participant donations.
4. Increase the number of turn-in dates: If your only donation turn-in date is the day of your event, you've already missed several opportunities to maximize your proceeds.
"Out of site - out of mind" is a way of life for school children and most people in general. Weekly turn-ins, driven by contests and reinforced with emails and take-home fliers will keep your campaign on the minds of parents and participants. It may require a few extra volunteers to count and return envelopes once a week, but it is a proven way to add thousands of dollars to your fundraiser.
HINT: Send pledge codes and emails through our Event Management interface on Mondays and Thursdays. Provide updates or your progress and remind participants and parents of upcoming turn-in dates, contests and Friday prizes.Event Administrators can watch in real time as online donations are processed within hours of emailing pledge codes.
5. Donors prefer sponsoring family and friends. Online donors are usually more willing to support family and friends than a generic "Donate Now" button. The call to action is even more urgent when supporting young family members competing for contests and prizes.
Make it easy for your donors by providing unique pledge codes for each participant. Donors can simply enter a participant's code when donating online through your Pride Page.
HINT: It's extremely helpful to provide a mechanism that tracks online donations for each participant. Our system will sort donations for all participants and send automated thank you emails to donors and a response to the participants receiving the donation.
6. Track online donations for each participant: Some fundraising services require each participant to build a web page in order to request online donations.
Our program keeps it simple for participants and donors and provides more control for Event Administrators. First, create pledge codes by uploading participant's name and email address into our secure, password protected, event management interface. The system automatically creates unique codes for each participant.
Then, use our email server to send pledge codes along with your Pride Page to every participant.
HINT: Emailing pledge codes and campaign updates to participants, through our mail server, will increase fundraising competition among classrooms and participants. Participants, competing for prizes, will email your Pride Page and their pledge code to friends and family and request donations on their social networking sites.
7. Make Your Campaign go Viral: The Internet is a powerful tool for instantly sharing a single message with thousands of people. Manage your campaign from the convenience of your home. With just a few clicks, email pledge codes and your Pride Page to participants.
Encourage participants and parents to send your Pride Page and Pledge Codes to as many friends and family as possible with email and built in social networking links.HINT: Your Pride Page will include easy links to social networking tools like Facebook, Twitter and MySpace. Our Pledge Code email tool will remind participants to use these social sites to increase exposure to your fundraiser and increase donations.
Remember, you have hundreds of participants and parents at your disposal. Use our resources to manage your team of fundraisers through communication and motivation.
These successful fundraising techniques will help improve the way you manage your campaign. Groups that use our program and follow our campaign suggestions will usually increase overall donations by as much as 30% or more. Your satisfaction is guaranteed!