Honestly, if your cause is compelling enough, there is no bad time to kick off a fundraising program. If your message is engaging and explains why you’re raising funds, people will typically support your group. Today may not be the right time to start a fundraiser; however it could be the exact day you need to begin planning one. What time of the year is best for your group?
Timing is very important and can make or break your fundraiser, knowing WHEN is as important as knowing HOW to ask for community support. The right people will also play into your program’s success; our Fundraising Sales Professionals are experts at helping you find the perfect time to run your program for maximum impact towards your goal. Their guidance and leadership is imperative to avoid conflicts with vacations (participants could be going out of town and possibly their supporters as well), exams, other group fundraisers, and community events that compete for supporter’s attention. Grab a school calendar and learn about what is taking place around you so you can take advantage of the perfect opportunity.
The next step is to take a page from the retailers book and think about calendar events when people are spending money; Mother’s day, Father’s day, Easter, Christmas, Valentine’s Day, Memorial Day, Labor Day, Halloween, Thanksgiving, etc. Many holidays can be underused when asking for support; you can plan a themed event around an upcoming holiday. Timing is essential for selling AND delivery. You need to make sure you will be available during the delivery; as well knowing your participants will have enough time to deliver products before the holiday.
It’s not enough, however, to simply launch a fundraising campaign. Promoting your fundraiser will drive your success. Here are some ways you can actively promote your holiday fundraiser in order to attract attention from supporters.
- Post about the fundraiser on your group’s homepage to make sure your efforts are placed center stage. Be careful not to bury it under other buttons or banners; your holiday fundraiser should be front and center to capture your visitors’ attention.
- Create a holiday hashtag to help you get the word out and shared. #SweetTreatsForYourSweetie for Valentine’s Day using our Sweet Treats Brochure, #PartySnacks for Memorial Day cookouts using our Century Pride Brochure, #GiftIdeas for Thanksgiving and Christmas using our Seasonal Sensations Brochure, #BloomingForMOM for Mother’s day using our Spring in Bloom Brochure, or simply #YummyFood #CenturyResources.
- Make sure to include visuals in your post, it’s well known that visuals boost engagement on social media. Have participants post fundraiser brochure pictures to get viewers inspired to purchase from your group.
- Utilize family and community holiday gatherings to collect orders. This is the easiest way to reach many people all at once.
- What else is going on? When planning the timing of your fundraiser, make sure not to compete with an existing local event. Programs that are traditionally done at a specific time, year after year and have long standing customers that plan on giving to those causes at those times. Plan around them!
Once your fundraiser has kicked off remember: Keep Promoting. You will reach new supporters everyday. When using the best practices above, your group will be setup for success for their next fundraiser.