We are proud to have many schools, colleges and education foundations among our long-term clients. It’s always an honor to support education. While it may sound a bit clichéd, like many clichés, there’s a lot of truth to it – the children are our future. And education is PRICELESS.
A smashingly successful school fundraiser DOES have a price. If it seems high to you, remember, you get what you pay for. Invest in quality, experience and a proven track record of fundraising success.
We lead our partners through a streamlined event success roadmap and utilize every advantage to uplevel the fundraising game. We invite schools to consider the following when hiring fundraisers and/or auctioneers to lead fundraising events and strategy:
1. Passing the Torch – Don’t Reinvent the Wheel
School fundraising committees have a high turnover rate – not because it’s not rewarding volunteer work, but because committee members’ kids age out! It’s ideal when the previous year’s auction chair can lend their experience and expertise, but it doesn’t often happen with schools. Therefore, the new committee is often coming in with ZERO historical data or information about what was done, how it was done and what the outcome was. We are data-driven, and as such, we preserve all of this information; the historical data and best practice. What you’re left with is a smoother handoff for next year’s team. They can hit the ground running, armed with data and strategic refinements to make subsequent events even better. This allows you to work smarter, not harder while netting more money.
2. Experienced, Data-Driven Consultation
So what do we do with your historical data? We use it to craft and continually refine your unique fundraising strategy. They say experience is the best teacher, right? Our process is based on years of successful fundraising strategy and event planning. Our four-part consultation process is designed to maximize fundraising results, avoid event pitfalls and streamline all of your efforts. From Meeting One – kicking off logistics and the planning process – to the post-event debrief, we are at your service with ideas to simplify, enhance and refine. We provide you with a complete and expertly-sequenced run-of-show and strategies for your revenue streams and special appeal. Not sure how to start or what to say? No problem – avail yourself of our scriptwriting services! Need a video so emotional, it’ll make people donate WAY more than they originally planned to? We can make that happen, too. We are strategic, meaning we keep up-to-date on trends and best practice. (Strategic planning is another one of our specialties, so if you’re looking for something longer-term instead of just one night of fundraising success, reach out!)
3. Professional Event Team
We bring our event pros to maximize your fundraising potential. This frees up your volunteers to tackle roles better suited for them. Of course you’ll need some volunteers – after all, they are ALSO priceless! But since we bring a full event team, your volunteers won’t have as many responsibilities the day (or night) of, which means less stress for you AND them. Before the event, they can help with marketing and sponsorships, procuring pre-committed gifts and fabulous live auction items, and all of those little and not-so-little event planning details. The day before, or day of, task them with set-up, picking up last-minute decorations, and so on and so forth – all those little things that pop up the closer you get to the big day. Then on the big day (or night) itself, feel confident relying on our event team to bring the magic, keep the show flowing and energy high. We are laser-focused on supporting you and making your night as successful as it can possibly be. Not just successful, but loads of FUN for your supporters too. That puts them in the mood to give and give BIG!
4. Elevate Guest Experience
Lean into our years of curating the best possible experience for your guests. Why? Because donor experience directly impacts how much they give. Anything that impacts donors positively or negatively is something to consider. Make sure you nail registration, venue selection, timing and sequencing. We’ll dig through data and find out which games and revenue streams appeal to your crowd, and which ones underperform. That way, year after year, your guests have even MORE fun. We’re paying attention and learning what guests like and don’t like with each and every event we’re a part of. It’s something we’re committed to after your event as well – asking guests for feedback. We encourage you to as well. Because we know HAPPY DONORS GIVE MORE MONEY (and return next year – with friends!).
5. Registration + Vendors
A positive registration experience is crucial for the success of your event. Afterall, registration is the first and last thing guests experience when attending your event. If they must stand in a long line upon arrival, they won’t be happy. And unhappy donors negatively impact your bottom line. Avoid! We partner and work closely with the best registration and software companies in the industry. Your registration can be a quick, efficient experience, keeping your donors happy AND generous. Need ideas, referrals or recommendations? Just ask!
6. Innovative Fundraising Strategy
Most school event chairs have very little actual fundraising experience. If you’re lucky, yours might have event planning experience, but likely not the kind of fundraising and sales strategy that defines a successful fundraising event. Our Benefit Auction Specialists are specifically trained to maximize the amount of money you raise. We consider it an art AND a science! Your auctioneer will pore over the placement of every little thing that’s on your evening’s agenda, whether it’s an activity, a revenue stream or a live auction item. Whatever you’re selling, they’ll advise you on the order in which you should sell it, the method of doing so and recommended price points. Should your special appeal occur before the live auction, after or in the middle? Who should sit where? It matters – ALL of it MATTERS! Our fundraising experts will never not sweat the small stuff. We sweat ALL of it AND we have a great time doing it!
*Final Pro Tip: Don’t Overserve Alcohol
Remember: your fundraiser and Parents’ Big Night Out are two different beasts, so keep them as such! Enjoying a glass of wine or three with your fellow parents at the event is one thing, but fundraisers take a turn for the worse very quickly if guests become sloppy. You want people talking about your mission and what a great night it was, not what a trainwreck the crowd was. Also, research the biphasic curve and its negative impact on giving as related to philanthropy. Drunk donors are not the goal!