Fundraising with food has been a long time favorite for sports team fundraising. It is effective, provides something most people like and are willing to pay for, and the variety is vast. Whatever type of food fundraiser you choose for your team, there are three things you must do to get the most out of your efforts.
Food Fundraisers: Go For Mass Appeal
First, choose a popular product that will appeal to the greatest number of potential customers. Your choice should be appropriate to your target audience, be priced fairly, include a good profit margin, and be seasonally viable. For example, don’t sell sweets while the Girl Scouts annual cookie fundraiser is in progress!
Once you choose a product or group of products, use publicity to get the word out. Use school publications, posters, and all the usual suspects.
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Take it to the next level by issuing a press release on local radio and newspapers. Most local publications offer this as a free service for non-profit organizations. This will spread your reach beyond the team, their families, neighbors, and friends.
Prepare and Execute!
Secondly, design your plan for execution. Everyone, including your team should know your group goal, your stretch goal, and their individual goal. Create a sales script for the team. Rehearse it at practice in a role playing way.
Would you rather make a purchase from an unprepared athlete who mumbles at his shoes, or from one that is prepared with what to say and looks their potential customer in the eye while conveying the appropriate message?
That message should briefly tell what product they are offering, who they are raising money for, and how the money will be used. (New uniforms, equipment, trip to the play-offs, etc.)
Offer Sales Incentives
Offer incentives for top sellers. Rewards should be quality prizes, not junk. Many fundraising suppliers include prize incentives for top sales attainment. If there is an additional charge for incentives, or if the incentives offered are not appropriate for your team, ask local businesses to donate prizes.
Have a recognition party announcing the top sellers. Everyone likes to be recognized for a job well done in the presence of their peers. If you tally your numbers daily, the top selling player has to run five less laps than the rest of the team.
Go Where The Money Is
As part of your execution plan, consider boosting your reach by selling your products from a table at a shopping center. These are customers that you may not reach otherwise, and can more than double your sales.
Approach the management of a shopping center for permission first. Then organize your volunteers in teams to cover the sales tables in shifts.
Advertise clearly at each sales table. In large print on posters, tell who is selling, what they are selling, and how the money will be used. Use not only multiple locations, but multiple tables at each location.
Give Extra Options
Third and finally, provide several ways the community can help your cause. Offering a variety of products helps ensure there is something that will appeal to everyone.
Or offer an overlay fundraising item. Not every customer will want the food products you have chosen to sell.
Offer a fundraising discount card in addition to your primary offering. Whether it is a two for one discount pizza card, or a fast food discount card, these can add substantial profit to your bottom line.
By offering your primary product and an overlay item, you could double the likelihood that a purchase will be made.
Don’t forget the most obvious overlay: a donation.
If a customer does not want to make a purchase, always ask if they would prefer to make a donation to help your cause.