What makes for a great and successful fundraiser? Raising a lot of money, right?

Money is just the tip of the fundraising iceberg.

Raising money is obviously a goal when fundraising, it is the very definition of it. But you also need to look at the bigger picture. The majority of things that we fundraise for – whether it be a good cause, a charity, or a school – fundraise yearly or more often depending on their need or type of fundraisers being used. If you are planning to have more than a one time fundraiser, then you are essentially joining the fundraising business.

What does this mean for you?

This means you get to “brand” yourself, along with the event or organization you are raising funds for. You get to become a professional fundraiser.

1. What is “Branding” and how do I do it? Branding is a term that is often thrown out in business fields, but what does it mean? In a nutshell, it means letting people know what you stand for and carrying it through all aspects of what you do, say and represent. This happens with or without you knowing it, and the perception can be good or bad. This is something you have to steer, guide and influence with your choices as the decision maker for your organization. A positive branding campaign can create strong return donations or customers (if selling a product for fundraising), as well as begin to spread the word about you and your organization. This will bring repeat business and make future fundraisers exponentially more successful and profitable. People will begin to advertise for you and not only look forward to but also seek out your next fundraisers. However, the reverse can also become true if you choose to ignore this very important aspect.

2. Think like a retailer. Whether you are collecting cash donations or selling products and/or services to raise money, the concept is the same. Treat those who donate like customers, because that is what they are. Think about your favorite store. Why is it your favorite? Great value, great product, great service, right? You must adopt these same traits into your fundraising plan to have a successful, repeatable event. How often do you give or receive tips on a great new store or product? And how often do you also hear from or tell others to “not go there” since you received sub-par service or poor quality items? Most people listen to these suggestions, good or bad. Which referral will you get?

3. Have a quality product. If you are selling items to raise money they need to meet a few criteria. From the consumers’ point of view they need to be quality and affordable. And for your organization they need to have decent profit margin and preferably be a great gift item, fairly unique and also highly-consumable. This doesn’t only refer to edible products, but ones that get used up and need to be replenished; therefore bringing repeat customers back for that “must have item.” This doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to selling goods and/or services either. You can still provide a good quality “product” when fundraising for cash donations. Be gracious, thank them generously, and if possible let them know where their dollars went and what they helped your organization achieve. This gives the donors a great sense of accomplishment while building a rapport and making them feel appreciated. Satisfaction, with a product or an organization builds and broadens your customer base. Remember those referrals from earlier?

4. Never let them see you sweat. This saying is never truer than when you are trying to get someone to believe in you, your product or your organization. The beauty of fundraisers is that they usually take place in our “spare time.” You know, after work, before dinner, between shuttling the kids around, etc. And anyone who has organized a fundraiser knows that it is no small task, but more like a second job. This is not to say that you can’t be stressed, because you probably will be at times, but you should try not to show it around your customers and donors. If they feel like you don’t know what you are doing or are not organized, they are less likely to trust you with their donation.

5. Don’t forget to have fun! Remember what brought you to this place of volunteering – your passion for the cause. With large events especially, it is easy to get overwhelmed by the business aspect of things. Make sure you take time to remind yourself why you are there, what you are trying to accomplish and how it will be all worth it in the end. Sometimes it helps to create an inspiration board with article clippings, pictures and goals. Have something visual you can refer to that puts you back on track and keeps you motivated.

Those that feel the calling to dedicate themselves to such an undertaking are often taken for granted. Take a minute to pat yourself on the back and remind yourself of all you have accomplished – or will accomplish. Fundraising events are no small feat. They take a lot of planning, determination and hard work to make them successful. So thank you for all you do! People that take time out of their lives to make the world a better place – that is the best “bottom line” any organization can have!

If you are pursuing the Fundraiser Business Opportunity, you should assemble a Group Fundraiser Introduction Opportunity Package.

Here is a list of some things that should be included in each introduction pack to entice a group to book a fundraiser with you.

It’s important when assembling this packet to make it look professional.

1. Your professionally done business card. (I always include 3 business cards)

2. A Business introduction letter. Explain who you are, what business you represent, your contact information, your business hours and website address/email address.

3. Fundraiser Program Introduction Letter.

This letter should thoroughly explain what your fundraiser opportunity is all about. How much does the group earn, how orders are collected, how orders are sorted & delivered, etc.

4. Group Benefit Letter.

I always include a letter on how the group can benefit from holding a fundraiser. On my group benefit letter I also add in a paragraph of how easy a fundraiser from my business is.

This is your chance to connect with the group on a more personal level. Tell them how this fundraiser program can benefit their group!

example: buy more school supplies, more athletic equiptment, field trips, banquets & parties, awards & trophies etc.

5. Include 1-2 copies of your current fundraiser catalog.

6. If you have a brochure about your companies fundraiser program include it.

7. Incentive Sheet.

If you offer incentives for the groups highest sellers, then include a incentive sheet on what they would earn.

8. Include 1-3 copies of your fundraiser order form.

Optional:

Your company business opportunity flyer.

If you make up professional fundraiser opportunity information packs more groups will book fundraisers with you.

We know what it’s like trying to sell something just to raise money for your organization. Today, most fundraising businesses send their catalogs of fundraising items right to the organization, because they know the person in charge of the fundraiser just doesn’t have the time to locate quality fundraisers so they will pick the easiest fundraiser they can with little or no work to get. But what they don’t understand can actually hurt their repeat fundraiser because it’s just easier to remember the bad rather than the good for most anything. This is why quality is very important when running any fundraiser these days, especially a hoagie fundraiser.

Your customer always appreciates value: These days when it comes to acquiring additional income to support your organization with hoagie fundraising or other kinds of fundraising, most customers look at the value of the fundraiser item.

The best way we can describe value is in this example below:
Hoagie Fundraiser example 1: Suppose you find a place that can make hoagie fundraisers for you for just a buck. And you’re told you can sell your hoagie fundraiser for at least 3 dollars.

The hoagie fundraiser you use has the lowest grade of meats and cheeses in the hoagie. Lettuce is scarce; the bun is a 6″ bun. We both can agree that if you are able to sell these low-grade hoagie fundraisers at 5 dollars each, you profit margin is unbelievable. A few months pass by, and you decide to run another hoagie fundraiser. This time around you have very few repeat customers to buy your hoagie fundraiser. You even decide to call a few customers to find out if they may be interested in your hoagie fundraiser event, but only to find out your hoagie fundraiser customer is not interested in your future hoagie fundraisers you may have.

Above is a real example of what happened to a hoagie fundraiser. Hoagie fundraisers should be of the best quality as possible, mainly because hoagie fundraisers are served as a supplement for a family dinner. It’s like going to a spaghetti dinner with your family, only to find out the dinner is actually warmed up pre-canned spaghetti all in one.

One must really give some thought to selling quality hoagie fundraisers, especially when food bought at fundraiser usually wind up on the family dinner table. If you supply quality, the rest is already sold. You’ll have repeat customers over and over again, because the quality hoagie fundraiser is the best fundraiser of the majority in a family.

Take the taste test: It’s easy to be sold on the idea of a fundraiser, but have you ever asked to have some samples made. Tasting hoagie fundraiser samples can not only build your relationship with the hoagie fundraiser business you select, but it also will give you a good idea on the quality of the meats, cheeses, and bun that will be served to your customers families. The same principal can be applied to any other kind of fundraiser as well. We can only assume your organization intends to be in business for years to come. We agree it may take extra work to find quality hoagie fundraisers or any kind of quality fundraiser, but the work will pay off in the long-run making your hoagie fundraiser a success every time. Selling quality hoagie fundraisers will develop repeat customers, and can even grow over time.

You are here because you are considering ways to earn money working from home. With unemployment at an all-time high, it is definitely a good time to take your income into your own hands. People are losing jobs daily and need that income to support their families and themselves. Some just want a second income to save up for that “just in case” moment. Whatever the reason, now is a great time to take control of your financial future and start your own business where you determine how often you work, where you work, and most importantly, how much you make. This article will discuss one method to earn money working from home – in the fundraising industry. Before analyzing the industry, ask yourself a few simple questions:

Am I able to wake up and motivate myself if nobody is looking over my shoulder?

Am I willing to make phone calls, network, send emails, do what it takes to make my business succeed?

Do I believe I can have a successful business and bring in the income I need?

Do I have the tools necessary to start a business – First, do you have the logistical tools – computer, internet connection, email, and phone. Second, ask yourself if you have the personal skills you think it will take to make your business a success? The explosion of technology has brought great benefits in bringing down your potential operating costs. With cell phones and flat rate phone plans, you now can actually enjoy the results when you earn money working from home. If you answered yes to the above questions – working from home could be a great move for you.

One fantastic option is starting your own fundraising business. In this economy, everyone is feeling the pinch and looking for new ways to make money. You could be the resource that delivers schools, churches, sports teams and other organizations their fundraising ideas. Chances are, you know a few people already that could use a fundraiser or fundraising ideas for their school fundraiser, or their church youth group fundraiser. If you have some of these contacts, you are halfway there.

All you need is some information and research of your own to find reputable fundraising companies or fundraising ideas that you can offer to these groups that are already in your rolodex. You could offer product-based fundraisers by working with a fundraising company who will pay you as a distributor of their products so the group doesn’t have to pay you any money. This requires very little work for you – it puts you in the position of matchmaker which is a great position to be in to earn money working from home. Or, you could consider offering your services in other types of fundraisers such as auction fundraisers, or event fundraisers. With these fundraisers, you would take care of the execution of the fundraising efforts and in turn, the church, team or school would pay you a percentage of their profits or a flat fee. The beautiful thing is that YOU get to decide.

If you are seriously looking to earn money working from home, why not start right now by making a list of people you know who could potentially be your clients. Friends, acquaintances, neighbors – anyone who you know who is part of an organization of any size may be looking for a fundraiser. Send out emails, tell people, call friends, spread the word that you are the resource – the go-to guy or gal for their fundraising needs. Once you have a group ready to work with you – the real fun begins.

Many schools, teams and churches will already have fundraising ideas and are just looking for someone to help them find the best companies or most profit possible. Look into all of the fundraisers out there: candle fundraising, scratch card fundraising, Spinners fundraising, wrapping paper fundraisers, Auntie Anne’s pretzel fundraisers and more so that you have a familiarity with the popular fundraisers groups are considering. The options are endless with fundraising as there are so many fundraising products and fundraiser ideas. There is also a seemingly unending amount of people who need to raise money. So, get started – do some research and see if starting your own fundraising business is the right move for you.

Nonprofit organizations, school programs community services and other projects need to obtain funding to operate, and as a grant writer, you can help these groups get the funding they need.

The first step to getting involved in the grant writing industry is to learn how to write a good grant proposal. By taking a course, you can usually also find out grant funding resources at the same time – as well as tips on how to get your proposals approved (something only experienced grant writers know).

You do not need a degree in writing grants, but you need to be a decent writer and pay close attention to detail. Taking a course in grant writing and getting educated in running a business is all you need to launch your fundraising business.

As a grant writer, you can provide your clients with a proposal writing service, but you will also help them greatly by knowing the right funding resources.

You can also use your local library and the internet to located funding resources. Your state may also publish a list of available grant funding sources, which is worth checking into.

During the grant application process, start a file where you can keep records of all correspondence, contact information and completed tasks.

When writing a grant proposal, closely follow the guidelines set by each funding resource. Be clear and concise, make sure that your spelling and grammar is correct and that you answer all necessary questions without being vague. Since foundations and government agencies receive many requests for grants, make their “reading” job easier on them, such as a table of contents on a larger grant proposal.

Ask for money to fund specific projects rather than just a contribution. Specific requests tend to get approved more often. Include pictures if possible, demonstrating who will benefit from the funding.

A nice benefit to starting a grant writing business is that you can work from your home. The cost of leasing office space and hiring employees is eliminated, making this a low-cost and low-risk business to start. You can also start part-time. many freelancers take this route, as a successful grant writing business can take time.

Something that you want to be aware of is that the grant approval process can sometimes take several months and require many hours, compared to article writing or letter writing. Having determination and focus to follow through on each project is important.

You also want to apply for more grants than you need, since you will not get approved for every grant that you apply for. There is lots of competition, and you want to be prepared. The more quickly and effectively you obtain funding for one client, the better you look to the next client, and so on.

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One of the more popular ways some charities use to raise money is through the contracting with a fundraising business, to gather donations in their name. Some may argue that the use of such as business is a distraction to the individual charity, however the results have encourage others to shift their efforts on their service to the public and leave the fundraising business to the professional fundraisers.

In the usual realm of fundraising, volunteers from within the organization talk to the public by any means possible to secure donations for their charity. The times spent seeking donations is done either during or outside the time they spend working for the charity and is seen as many as a distraction to their regular commitment of helping others. By bringing in a fundraising business to raise money, the workers can remain focused on their tasks of helping others and the charity can still raise funds for continued operations.

However, a fundraising business is not going to commit time and resources raising money for someone else out of the goodness of their heart and a percentage of the money raised is taken as the fee for their work. This insures the business does its best to raise the most funds, but also can mislead donors of the amount of money they are giving that will go to help a charity.

Read Agreement Closely Before Agreeing To Terms

If a charity is looking at a fundraising business to help them raise money, they should carefully look over the contract. In some cases the business may keep 50 percent or more of any money raised. In addition, there may be a set fee for operating expenses that will be deducted from the charity’s portion, leaving the charity receiving as little as five cents on every dollar donated while the fundraising business walks off with the lion’s share of the take.

With the economy slowing, many of us want or need to pick up some additional income. What are the things a job needs to offer for a mom? Well, the opportunity to make good money obviously, freedom to work around your schedule as a mom which is your most important job, and support so that you can do your job effectively and make the money you want.

There are great opportunities in the fundraising industry for stay-at-home moms. Moms often have a great network of other parents and tend to know a lot of people who need fundraisers. Can you think of any groups off hand that you know need to raise money? Church groups, dance teams, cheerleading squads, bands, elementary schools, PTAs, athletic teams are just a few of the hundreds of groups who need to raise money. Almost every organization or group out there is looking for new ways to raise money. You could be their fundraising resource. With a little bit of knowledge and training, you can use your skills as a homemaker and a mom to create your own successful fundraising business.

First, decide if you want to research and build your own company from scratch or if you want to find a fundraising company that offers leads, training and support in the industry. If you have tons of knowledge about fundraising and have a lot of contacts already who you know need to fundraise, it might be a good idea to go it alone. However, if you want support, a training program with a proven success record, tools and leads, you may want to go with a fundraising company. Look for a company that is available to answer your questions and that wants you to succeed. Whether you work with a company or you ‘go it alone’, you can make your fundraising company a huge success with your focus, perseverance and positive attitude.

Starting your own fundraising business will require time and work, but you will be able to set your own schedule, be your own boss and decide how YOU want to run things. It’s YOUR business. Good luck and happy fundraising!

Jenny Ann is an expert fundraiser and writes exclusively for ABC Fundraising.

We all know the economy is suffering and jobs are being cut, hours are being cut and opportunities are less available. It is definitely a good time to make your own opportunity. Why not supplement your current income with a side business in the fundraising industry?

Use some of the skills from your current job and past jobs and put them to work for YOU so that you can make money at the rate you want to on your own time.

Even in a slow economy, athletic teams, church groups, clubs, schools and hundreds of other groups need to raise money for their expenses. If you can be a fundraising resource for your local groups, schools and churches or even a resource to groups all over the country, you may be able to put some extra money in your pocket as well as these groups.

Is a fundraising business right for you?

Do you care about people? Do you like the freedom of working from home? Are you motivated to succeed? Do you have time to call team leaders and coaches and to follow up with people who are excited about what you are offering? Do you know a lot of people who trust your opinion?

If the answer to most of these is yes, it might be good to look into the fundraising business. Is one of your kids on a team or in the band that needs to raise money for uniforms this year? Right there, you could have your first sale. It’s so easy – you are offering these groups opportunities to raise money and you will help them through it.

How to get started:

A great way to get started quickly is to find a fundraising company online that offers opportunities to be an affiliate – by doing this, you will have the resources, training and support of a larger company and won’t have to take the risk involved in funding your own fundraising products or materials. The company will also see that you get paid your commission from the fundraiser. The next step is to find groups who need fundraising. Many were listed above and many fundraising companies that you sign on with will be able to offer you leads that you can contact so you can go outside of your community to find groups that need fundraisers. Then, it’s up to you to be persistent and make your fundraising business as profitable as you want it to be!

Going to the local shopping or outlet mall has proven in these past years to be a favorite pastime for many. Often, people will buy what they need, what they must have, or simply dream about purchasing items through what is known as window shopping.

In addition, like most things, there has been a continual change in ways that shoppers can shop. This metamorphosis has seen the shopper go from bustling downtown shops to enclosed malls.

Now, through modern technology, the shopper can simply log onto the internet and shop countless stores for that particular item and at the right price. With the click of the computer mouse that product can be delivered without the person ever having to leave the comfort of their home.

With this convenient way of purchasing products that are available it was only a matter of time that this process would be transferred to the non-profit world. This system of supporting a charity is through the use of an online fundraising business. If wishing to support charitable work in this way it is important to know what is an online fundraising business and what are the associated benefits.

What Is An Online Fundraising Business?

An online fundraising business is an internet based business that enters into agreements with schools, charities, service clubs and other organizations. Through an online fundraising business the efforts of the fundraising group are streamlined and become more productive.

For example, a school wishes to sell greeting cards to help raise money for band uniforms. The agreement is entered into with the music department and the online fundraising business. Once the agreement is entered into, the fundraising effort is announced along with the address of the website. Those wishing to support this cause simply access the internet site, view the products available, order their greeting cards, pay for the transaction and wait for their product to be delivered.

Benefits

There are many benefits associated with utilizing an online fundraising business. First of all there is the opportunity to reach out to many more people. This can be accomplished by sending, through e-mail, the announcement of the fundraiser and explaining what the funds will be used for. In addition, the website address can be imbedded into the e-mail.

Once the e-mail has been received into a potential customer’s inbox, it would be very easy for this individual to pass the e-mail onto those in their address book. The potential of this fundraising effort reaching thousands of e-mail addresses is a strong possibility.

In addition to reaching many more people there are savings that can be realized by utilizing an online fundraising business. These cost savings can be especially seen in the area of less gasoline consumption. This is due to the fact that the individuals helping to promote the sales will not have to utilize their vehicles for transportation or reaching out to the customers.

Finally, utilizing an online fundraising business is very convenient for all individuals involved in the process. The actual paperwork can be handled by the website’s internal ordering system, the shopper can go online to order the product at their convenience and the fundraiser does not need to go door to door to advertise their product.

Let’s be honest. Good jobs are hard to find. Good paying jobs are even harder to find. Good paying jobs that offer flexibility and setting your own hours are nearly impossible to find. So, why not take matters into your own hands and use what you have to start your own thriving fundraising business.

Whether you are looking for something to supplement your allocated finances for your college expenses or are looking for some spending money to enjoy life while in college or maybe you are saving for the time when you get out of college – starting your own fundraising business could be a great move for you.

First, you have a lot of resources at your disposal while in college. Most importantly, your exposure to tons of groups that need to raise money can be your greatest asset. Sororities, fraternities, clubs, bands, dance teams, sports teams, theatre groups, special interest groups, religious organizations – all of these are in your college world and chances are you know people who are in these groups just in your circle of friends and classmates. It’s safe to say that most of these groups will need to raise money at least once this year.Growing budget cutbacks are leading more and more groups to turn to fundraising and many want unique or creative fundraising ideas that are easy, and profitable. You can be these groups and teams go-to source for all things fundraising.

Second, you have access to email, phones, computers, copy machines and other tools that make starting your own business that much easier.

Third, you are gaining skills daily as a college student, not just in classes but in your life as a student – communication skills, negotiation skills, writing skills and more that will be very helpful to your fundraising business.

The next step is to find a fundraising company or companies that you can distribute products for that people might be interested in. Common profitable fundraisers include candy sales, Auntie Anne’s Pretzel sales, the Scratch and Help Fundraiser to name a few. Additionally, it would be great to brainstorm some creative non-product based fundraisers that you could help execute. Examples of these are Service Auction Fundraisers, Pancake Breakfast Fundraisers, Jog-a-thons. For these, you could arrange either a flat fee or percentage of profit that would be paid to you for your work in organizing the fundraiser.

You can increase the success of your business by forging relationships with local businesses to act as sponsors to various fundraisers and offer that as a great reason to work with your business rather than competitors.

Use your resources, get motivated and start your own fundraising business today. Look for a reputable company to team up with that offers support, training and great profitable fundraisers and you will be making money in no time. You will be able to enjoy working when you want, where you want and see the money and profits from your hard work directly.