4 Tips for Summer Fundraising Success
Summer is quickly becoming a popular time to hold fundraising events and boost annual sales. To help steer you toward a bright and shining summer fundraiser, check out these tips.
Post Date: Mar 29 2021
While fall and spring are both lucrative fundraising seasons, summer is quickly becoming a popular time to hold fundraising events and boost annual sales. But summer fundraisers aren’t without their obstacles too, such as recruiting vacationing volunteers, connecting with new supporters, and growing interest in your event year after year.
At Terri Lynn, we know how important a successful fundraising event can be. In fact, it may be the financial catalyst that supports all of your organization’s charitable activities in the following months!
To help steer your organization toward a bright and shining summer fundraiser, check out our top tips below:
Tip #0 - If You Can’t Hold an In-Person Event...
There are many benefits to holding your summer fundraising campaign in person if your group finds it feasible this year. But the pandemic has flipped the script on fundraisers; and while in-person events are gradually returning, you may choose to do something virtual instead. If you do, Terri Lynn can help with your free, personalized, easy-to-share fundraising Webstore.
Going virtual with your summer fundraiser gives your organization a lot of flexibility; you don’t need to sell face-to-face so you can sell to people located anywhere, there is no need to handle money or use paper order forms, and your supporter’s deliveries arrive right to their doorstep - completely safe with no extra effort for your organization! There are fewer overhead costs and reduced needs for volunteers.
And remember - the Terri Lynn Webstore program is free to use, personalized for your organization, and easy to promote (Check out this video on how to spread the word).
Tip #1 - Plan Ahead and Plot Out Your Action Items
Your Fundraising Goal
Spring is the ideal time to lay your fundraising foundation. Depending on the amount of money you want to raise after your fundraiser is completed, and the type of Terri Lynn fundraiser you plan to run (Quick Start, Order Taking or Webstore), you’ll want to form committees to handle the various tasks. These to-dos might include volunteer recruitment, accounting, inventory management, social media management, venue organizing or entertainment.
Your Fundraising Budget
It’s also important to determine your budget early on. A budget should include the costs for several items, including (but not limited to):
- Entertainment (if applicable)
- Printing and Supplies
- Fundraising Products (remember, Terri Lynn lets organizations set their own selling prices)
- Venue (if applicable)
Bonus tip: Supplying your fundraiser with artwork for marketing & advertising is one area where Terri Lynn really simplifies things. You can download our Promotion Kit with ready-to-use graphics featuring our selection of premium nuts, confections and savory snacks that will leave your supporters craving more!
Picking a location is another important action item, and spring is a great time to start planning ahead. Choosing the date and venue as early as possible helps with recruiting volunteers, enlisting the help of sponsors (if you choose), and laying out your action items long before your event.
When choosing a venue, it can be helpful to think about:
- Sun vs. shade in the summer months
- Capacity for your volunteers and supporters
- Display and storage areas for your Terri Lynn products
Tip #2: Forecast Where Your People Will Be During the Summer
While many people have extra free time in the summer months, their schedules are also more fluid due to vacations and summer activities. To ensure a successful summer fundraising campaign, part of your planning should include enlisting volunteers early and planning around vacation schedules.
Contact your volunteer base during the springtime (now!), so you can secure their help before they make their big summer vacation plans. This means emailing, cold calling, letter writing, or spreading the word on social media that you’re looking for volunteers.
You can use these same methods when thinking about your target audience of supporters. If there will be other local festivals in the weeks leading up to your event, think about ways you can get the word out to those captive audiences, whether it’s pre-designed Terri Lynn fliers to distribute at the event, or posters that can be hung in the same vicinity of the festival.
Bonus tip: When advertising to your audience of supporters, it’s helpful to plan your timeline now, so you’re not rushing to get the word out later. For instance, you may want to send a mailer two weeks prior to your event, followed by an email blast 10 days before the event, and a series of social media posts around the same time. Don’t forget to get the message out on the day of the event, too, for those spontaneous supporters! This message can be an email, social media post, or better yet - both!
Tip #3: Pick a Summertime Theme
A fun, engaging theme for your summer fundraising campaign draws the attention of prospective sponsors, volunteers and attendees. It also builds excitement and encourages people to support you each year.
Some of our favorite summer-themed ideas are:
- A Lemonade and Snack Stand. Nothing says summer like lemonade! Volunteers can manage different stands that showcase unique drinks, and each can be paired with a favorite Terri Lynn gourmet nut mix, snack or confection. For more community engagement, you can also enlist local chefs to create special lemonades or baked goods with Terri Lynn treats.
- Partner or Connect with Local Attractions. Is your town famous for rafting or hiking? Then have an outdoor theme where attendees “visit” different local landmarks at your fundraiser. This is also a way to get other businesses involved and showcase community pride.
- Get Active. Whether it’s a bike-a-thon, 5k race, or obstacle course, anything that gets the community moving is a great way to celebrate summertime. Plus, you can bet attendees will work up their appetites for Terri Lynn snacks when they’re on the move. Our favorite post-activity snacks for refueling include the Tropical Blend and Turkish Apricots.
Tip #4 Prepare Your Assets and Calendar
Once you have a date and theme, you’ll want to advertise early to keep your fundraiser top of mind and help to boost your attendance (and sales) when the big day comes.
- Download assets from your Terri Lynn Promotion Kit right away
- Send press releases to local newspapers and TV stations a month before
- Post the event on your organization's website a month before
- Email your organization’s business associates, supporters and all other member’s personal contacts 1 week before
- Post about the event on social media 1 week before and again the day before and day of the event (ask your friends to share the post too)
- Keep posting on social media throughout the day of the sale (you can even try making a live video to share from your smartphone).
Bonus tip: Visit our past blog article with free fundraising opportunities for even more ideas: Free Ways to Promote Your Fundraiser: Six Ideas to Help Get the Word Out That Will Lead to Fundraising Success
Let Terri Lynn Lend a Hand When It Comes to Planning Your Summer Fundraiser
While there are challenges that can go hand-in-hand with a summer fundraiser, such as recruiting volunteers or planning around vacations, there are also opportunities to reach your fundraising goal quickly while creating a fruitful, engaging and memorable event.
Terri Lynn wants your 2021 summer fundraiser to be a success, so we’ll be here to help guide you every step of the way. Call on our team of Fundraising Experts to get help to create a customized plan for your organization. We’re here to help you reach (or exceed!) your summertime fundraiser goal that supports your cause throughout the year.