School fundraising has changed over the years. Let’s be honest – how people communicate, how they comparison shop, and how they spend money has changed, too. Somehow lugging around a box full of samples isn’t cutting it anymore.
Just like any other products for sale, the fundraising program you choose should make the most of the current ways people buy through digital channels, both using them to promote and offer purchasing options which make it easier to take orders from family and friends that aren’t nearby.
People are writing fewer checks and are processing more payments online. Consumers prefer that only about 9% of all their transactions be made in cash. Many fundraising groups, like Century Resources, offer tools like those listed below to help parents and students get the word out to friends and family, and accommodate orders in more ways.
Provide a clear pitch and tools to market for your students.
- Clearly identify the reason why you are fundraising for students and parents. When students identify a clear need for their group, they have a greater degree of success when they ask for orders. Quick and to the point allows supporters to know what and why.
- Use an email automator. It’s easier than it sounds. Century Resources, for example, simply has students and parents enter the names and email addresses of friends and family that might be willing to help. They’ll receive a personalized email about your group’s fundraiser and a link to shop through your customized web store.
- Leverage social media. Sharing information about your fundraiser via social media makes it easy to reach large groups at once. Century Resources provides a suggested post and link for your students, groups, schools, or even parents’ Facebook or Twitter pages.
Encourage online order placement.
- Set up a customized web store. Whether orders are placed in person or online, the group receives the same profit, and students still earn credit toward awards. Products are shipped directly to those placing online orders, so that reduces the delivery burden, too. Your Century Resources web store stays open for a year after your program ends, so family and friends can buy more of the products they love—and you’ll continue to earn profits.
- Paying via smartphone. Customers without cash? No problem. Buyers just simply scan the QR code on the student’s order form with their smartphone, and they’ll be directed to a secure mobile site to easily pay for orders with their credit card.
While digital channels for both outreach and purchasing have evolved, it’s always best to remind students that a phone call or an in-person visit really helps to seal the personal connection and commitment. A smile still goes a long way!
“We appreciate all that Century Resources does for our music program. Our students made over $4,000 profit for their student accounts. We love your company and we really appreciate [our representative] for all that she does to make sure things are going smoothly.” – Linda Hartweg, IWHS Band