There is no ‘one size fits all’ when it comes to developing a strategic fundraising plan. But the main point is – you do need one. Fundraising for non-profits can be a challenge. There are usually many opinions and ideas offered. That is one reason you need to have a strategic fundraising plan – one you can stick to.
The need to Identify
A successful strategic fundraising plan should answer the following three questions (among others).
- Who is your team?
- Who will participate?
- What is your activity?
Your team. Depending on the size of your group, this can be easy or difficult. If you have a small group, it will soon become obvious who will take on the various roles. With a larger group, experience and desire may lead the decisions on who will take on the responsibilities. Your team will make or break the success of your fundraiser. Since usually the team consists of volunteers, responsibilities should be spread out so that the work is shared among the group.
Participants. The participants in your fundraiser are what makes your efforts worthwhile. They need to understand the product or offers that will make money for your group or organization. It’s very important for them to have well-defined instructions so that nothing is left to chance. Their directions need to be clear and easy to understand and if working with kids – repeated several times. If your fundraiser includes items or products to sell – your participants will be more motivated to make sales if they will be rewarded for good efforts.
Talk to vendors and research fundraising activities
There are many fundraising methods for nonprofit organizations to raise money. The hard part is deciding which method best fits your group.
- Ease of managing
- History of success
- Up-front cost and profit
Some types of fundraisers are easier to manage than others. Finding a balance for the amount of work your group will have to do to get the fundraiser off the ground – versus how much money you will make when the fundraiser is complete is the primary consideration when deciding on which type of fundraiser to commit to. Ordering and delivery can be complicated with products such as frozen food items.
The fundraising method you choose should have a history of success. Ask for recommendations from other groups about what type of fundraisers have been successful for them. Look at the track record of any company you are considering.
A fundraiser should not eat up your budget with up-front costs – and you need to make a good profit margin when everything is said and done.
A strategic fundraising plan
When your non-profit organization has only one or two major fundraisers per year – you want them to be profitable and easily organized. A strategic fundraising plan need not be complicated. It has to take into consideration the budget that you have to work with and how much money your organization needs to raise. You want to get the most out of your efforts to help your group continue its activities. One of the most successful and popular fundraising method is a coupon book fundraiser. With no up-front costs and a clean and easy to sell product – your monetary needs can be met while having fun in the process.