Booster Club Fundraising Tips

Booster clubs are wonderful organizations, often supported by dedicated parents. However, most members do not have fundraising experience and most members do not know which type of fundraiser to choose and how to run a fundraiser. It’s not easy to come up with fun and engaging booster club fundraising ideas. 

Even if an idea seems like a good one in theory, it can be difficult and expensive to organize. Some fundraising partners and platforms charge as much as 40% of the proceeds. In addition, busy parents often don’t have the time required to organize a large event, or even attend one. In addition, many fundraisers require time to set up, purchase products ahead of time, store products, and even deliver products over some period of time after the event.

For these reasons, it’s critical that you think carefully about the best ways to maximize engagement and boost attendance without overburdening your hard-working volunteers. Here are a few ideas for booster club fundraising.

Boost Attendance with a Restaurant Fundraiser

Hosting a fundraiser at a restaurant is one of the easiest and fastest ways to put an event together. Local restaurants are often more than happy to host a booster club night and share a portion of their revenues with you. 

Parents and supporters are more likely to attend a restaurant fundraiser than other types of non-food fundraisers because attending a dinner doesn’t require a lot of commitment. It’s also affordable. It is also something they have to do anyway at that time—they have to eat! You can organize several restaurant fundraisers throughout the year to give supporters multiple chances to attend. 

Restaurant fundraisers also give you the opportunity to invite the students you’re raising funds for, and they can make a connection with supporters in the community. It also is valuable to start to make a connection with siblings and friends of the family who may choose to join your activity in future years. Your only real challenge is getting the word out so that as many people as possible know about the event. Be sure to announce the event far in advance so people can add it to their calendar, and also remind them on the day prior or the day of, so that they don’t accidentally forget!

Keep It Simple and Try an Online Fundraiser

For busy parents, online fundraisers are often the easiest way for them to support the club. If you’re using an all-in-one software platform like BoosterHub to organize the fundraiser, it doesn’t take much time or effort to set up. BoosterBucks is the fundraising platform within BoosterHub. It is fully integrated and super easy to use. Within just a few minutes you can complete the setup and start promoting your campaign. Participants connect with their contacts, sharing information about the club and the fundraiser and generating interest and excitement. Parents can simply click a few links to support the club and to follow along with the fundraiser’s progress. One of the best things about BoosterBucks is that the platform fee is only 5%! Your club keeps 95% of the proceeds, significantly more than some online fundraisers. This is a very important factor in which platform to choose, as your donors will be unhappy with high fees, knowing that their donation to the club is affected. An additional benefit of online fundraisers is that online fundraisers significantly expand your reach, because there’s no limit to the audience. It is easy to receive donations from out-of-state family members and friends. It is easy to connect with alumni who have moved out of town. Make sure to send your campaign to groups that may be interested, including:

  • Club alumni
  • Local businesses
  • Club sports
  • The Chamber of Commerce

In addition to maximizing your reach, make sure that your fundraiser is clear about what you’re doing and why you’re fundraising. Give your audience a reason to donate. Include photos for the campaign, and tell them how their donation will benefit the students and the community. For example, if the funds will be used for a new volleyball net, or a repaired baseball fence, or sod for the football field, let them know that.

Finally, make the fundraiser easy to share, and encourage your audience to pass it on to their networks.

Fundraise Year-Round with T-Shirts

T-shirt fundraisers are an easy and fast way to boost your fundraising efforts. Ordering shirts is much easier and less expensive than organizing a large fundraising event. In addition, you can sell t-shirts throughout the year, and it’s a great alternative to simply asking supporters to donate. One of the great things about T-shirts is they don’t have expiration dates! Be sure to make a T-shirt design that could be sold over several years, that way if you order too many and have extras they can be sold the next year, too.

Consider selling T-shirts at the concession stand, setting up a booth in the school, or even asking a few local businesses to set up small T-shirt stations in their establishments. It may be that you can reach customers in locations other than the school gym, stadium, or performance hall.

Booster club fundraising is not always easy, but these simple ideas should help encourage engagement and make your efforts more successful. The important thing to remember is to keep the number of required hours for preparation down to a minimum, and keep the required fees to a minimum if using an online fundraiser. Parents want to be able to help, so have a variety of ways available that they can do so. Some may prefer to make a financial donation, some may prefer to help out in small blocks of time regularly each week. Others may want to devote one long day on the weekend once a year. Make sure there are ways they can contribute that fit their needs.