A fun brainstorming session is a great way to discover new fundraising incentives. The tricky part is choosing fundraiser incentive ideas that motivate team members and raise the most money. So how do you inspire booster club donors and volunteers to give more of their money and time?
Volunteers are more enthusiastic and convincing when they believe in the booster club fundraiser. Thus, incentives for donations work best when the fundraiser’s vision inspires those leading the fundraising campaigns. But enthusiasm can only go so far. So, the best way to raise money is to understand your donor preferences. Then you can develop creative funding campaigns that make an impact with your prospective donors.
This piece looks at booster club fundraising ideas for your three audiences. That includes individual donors, booster club members, and ideas that incentivize high school students to partake in booster activities. We also examine how to apply the different incentives to different types of fundraisers.
Fundraising Incentives for School Booster Clubs
Your goal is to inspire and motivate past and potential contributors to start donating. For that, you need incentives that encourage your supporters to give as much as possible. And the way to achieve this is to offer benefits—physical or intangible—that appeal to them personally. Additionally, the right incentives can earn long-term donor engagement for future club fundraisers.
|Get Personal. Research shows that 72% of people respond to personalized outreach, while most ignore impersonal, generic communication.|
Know Your Donors or Potential Backers
Incentives are ethical when done with the right intentions. But you want to avoid casually offering something in return for support. Instead, get to know your donors or prospects, and tailor the incentive to your audience. For instance, a physical (tangible) gift could work with one supporter. Others may respond better to a special offer or recognition (intangible). And some will want nothing more than a good feeling for supporting a worthy cause.
In every case, the incentive should express genuine gratitude for your club’s supporters.
Why Donors Donate
Knowing what attracts a donor to a booster club fundraising incentive will help you tailor campaigns. There are five core reasons behind donor contributions:
- A genuine desire to help worthy causes that support student’s education
- Benefit from the personal connection
- Internal satisfaction
- Societal and or customer/client expectations
- Tax incentives
Now let’s explore some of the quickest ways to learn more about your donors and prospects.
Send Out a Fundraising Incentives Survey
The easiest way to learn which fundraising incentives make sense to donors is to ask. You can ask local businesses or individual contributors outright. Another option is to send your list of donor contacts an invite to a short online survey. It should have a few quick questions asking how they would like to be recognized—or not. You might want to include the survey in your welcome message sent to new members and donor prospects.
Here are a few other ways to collect data to help you learn more about your donor leads:
- Run text surveys with the permission of donors and prospects
- Do online research
- Leverage petitions
- Invite and interact with prospects and donors at school fundraising events
Next, the types of incentives that motivate donors to get involved.
Physical Vs. Intangible Incentives
Physical incentives are tangible. Personalized club merchandise for major supporters or recurring donors is an excellent examples. That could be apparel, decals, stationary, etc., displaying the contributor’s name. For first-time donors, give non-personalized merch as an incentive or tailored gift-wrapped baskets.
|Tailor Gift Baskets to meet the needs of your donor. The idea is to decide on a theme. Then, fill the basket with carefully chosen items to make it unique.|
Here’s a quick list of physical donor incentives to attract new or retain existing supporters:
- Personalized incentives, e.g., merchandise
- General merchandise (not personalized)
- Matching gifts
- Fundraising auctions
There are many other tangible incentives for local business donors. Their products or services can be part of cookie dough competitions or pancake breakfasts, as two examples.
Here are four more intangible ideas for booster club donation Incentives.
- High-profile public recognition, e.g., printed media, social media, at events
- Low-profile personal recognition, e.g., thank you call/letter/text, visit
- Donor-only perks such as priority access or seating
- Sponsorship opportunities for events and locations
Some donors may appreciate recognition for their active contribution. That could include help with promoting your easy booster club fundraisers. Or even peer-to-peer fundraising. Involved benefactors also tend to be more giving when making contributions.
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Booster Club Members Fundraising Incentives
Fee-based booster club member plans are an excellent incentive to help raise much-needed funds. What memberships offer depends on the unique structure of your club. For example, you might offer incentives that target individuals, families, donors, or all three. Also, consider membership tiers that appeal to specific groups. But remember, paid booster club memberships done incorrectly can cause more harm than good.
The success behind paid membership incentives is that they’re easy to obtain and simple to manage. But it must also be attractive to your target audience. The chart below illustrates a 3-tiered setup for bronze, silver, and gold categories. Notice how it offers both tangible and intangible incentives.
|FEE-BASED BOOSTER CLUB MEMBERSHIP INCENTIVES||Bronze||Silver||Gold|
|Vinyl yard sign||✔️||✔️||✔️|
|Two branded t-shirts (unisex)||✔️||✔️||✔️|
|Two cotton twill caps||✔️||✔️||✔️|
|Invitation to club meetings + voting rights||✔️||✔️||✔️|
|Official recognition on the club’s website||✔️||✔️||✔️|
|Team duffel bag or similar||—||✔️||✔️|
|Two custom, quality stadium chairs||—||✔️||✔️|
|Four quality stadium chairs||—||—||✔️|
|Four-person admission to all home events||—||—||✔️|
|Custom foldable quality stadium seat cushion||—||—||✔️|
|Commemorative engraved brick||—||—||✔️|
|Booster club discount card||—||—||✔️|
Targeted Membership Drives
The easiest way to attract new members is to run a membership recruitment drive. Your campaign should cover the ‘what’s in it for me?’ angle. This way, your prospects can see what value each plan offers them. They must also know how the membership fees will help their own and other students.
How to Attract New Members
There are several ways to attract prospects to your paid membership plans. The simplest of these is to ask the beneficiaries outright. For example, send physical letters home with the high school students to deliver to their families. Another great way to raise more funds is to make the drive competitive, offering rewards to whomever signs up the most memberships.
If your club has a website, use that to promote membership incentives to friends and family of the school. The same goes for any social media accounts. Remember to make the online sign-up process easy across all devices. Ideally, it should include an option for members to upgrade their current plan with a few simple clicks.
Portable Information Booth
An eye-catching portable information booth is another great way to raise funds through paid membership plans. The best thing about mobile booths is that you can set them up anywhere. Think high school events, fundraisers in malls, and other high foot traffic areas in the community. Finally, ensure that interested parties can quickly sign up then and there.
School Publicity Channels
Many schools publish news weekly on social media, websites, and physical fliers. Promoting booster club membership plans through school publicity channels can be very effective. Ask for a spot whenever the school talks to parents directly. A short, to-the-point message that directs the reader to your member sign-up is the way to go.
Student Volunteer Incentives
Students involved in their favorite booster club fundraising activities foster a healthy school community. Adult volunteers and students who work together form connections in the community and friendships that boost drive and improve efforts. But young learners are also preoccupied with their studies, so what incentives will get them on board?
Raising money needs a fun element. No one wants to be part of anything deemed boring and unremarkable. So, put yourself in the student’s shoes. If you’re unsure, hold a brainstorming session with your team. It will help you explore potential fundraising incentives that resonate. But remember to get approval from the school principal before running a new campaign.
How Students Support Nonprofit Organizations
There are countless ways for students to support your volunteer events. Young learners tend to have a creative nature. They can ignite exciting fundraiser ideas for booster clubs and ways to promote them. And, having the face of a student who will benefit from a donor’s patronage goes a long way to increasing fundraising support. But first, you must get them onside.
Here are five fundraising incentives that should trigger a few ideas of your own:
- Student volunteers get time out of class for event preparation
- Student volunteers are allowed to dress down at school for the day
- Promise of a pizza party after the event
- Deliver donuts or lunch to student volunteers at school
- Award gift cards or free tickets to sporting events or movies
You get the gist. There will be fundraising incentives unique to your school, so tap into those. It’s worth the effort, as student volunteers bring so much value to the club’s table.
Student Volunteer’s Link to Morale
Student volunteers are an invaluable resource as their presence is great for morale—and it’s infectious. And the higher the enthusiasm, the more people want to give their support. Volunteers who feel good about their contribution positively impact your organization. You can expect more successful booster club events with improved fundraising incentives. And when attendees enjoy themselves, they tend to share their experiences with others.
Likewise, when morale drops, the opposite is true. It becomes more challenging to recruit and retain volunteers across the board. And when that happens, events are less successful, and revenues drop.
|Study Finds Significant Benefits for Young Volunteers|
A 2021 study found that student volunteering helps develop qualities needed for social and psychological adaptation. There were significant differences in the moral and emotional personality spheres of student volunteers compared to those who do not volunteer .
Booster Club Fundraising Incentives Closing Comments
Booster club fundraising incentives attract and retain donors, club members, and new volunteers. Well-planned incentives help motivate and inspire your core supporters across the board. That includes volunteers, paid members, and club backers. The fundraising tips and incentives on this page will give your donors and volunteers a reason to give back repeatedly.
Cover Your Booster Club Property
It can be costly to replace your organization’s property if destroyed by fire, vandalism, or lost through theft. AIM’s property insurance for booster clubs protects you from these incidents. We cover raffle merchandise, fundraising supplies, prizes, and any equipment(owned and rented) in your possession. That includes PA systems, popcorn makers, and other gear.