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My Best Advice on Fundraising

Page 2 of 3      by Randall Tomaras


5. High value product SELECTION. When I was a teacher there were all kinds of slick sales people that would try to get me to talk my class into selling their products.  My experience is, very rarely does this work. Here is why: Most who is use their products as fund raisers  are FIRST after finding someone to sell their product because they can’t. SECOND there is usually a middle man (or woman) that sells the manufactures product and they are usually paid well.  After those two have been paid, and you can be assured they are the first to be paid, there has to be an incentive for the seller and then a profit for the fund raiser. All this has to be done and still keep the product competitive in price. Reality is you can go to the Dollar Store and get it far cheaper. Plus selling product is a nightmare for accountability when you have kids who do not have an income for replacement if the product is lost or stolen. The manufacture or fund raising rep is not going to chip in. For that reason events, raffles, donated product are a higher mark up with more accountability.


6. Know who your AUDIENCE is.  If you are raising money for a Little League team, then your audience is family and those who have played baseball. It might include business like restaurants and motels that might benefit from tournaments, but they are probably one you will tap for prizes or products. That is not to say that you won’t get a donation or sell a product to someone outside of your audience, but you will have a lower closing ratio when you go outside of the intended audience. So really think through who the intended audience is before you attack. LOL


7. AVOID scammers and con artists. Have your local police check them out before you get involved. Ask what other people they have fund raised for. You contact that organization  or school and find out what their feeling are. Make sure you find the references not theirs. Look up state licenses. Employment records,  home ownership, number of moves, length of board members service,  are all tell-tale signs. If they have been raising money for two years and there is little or no progress, be leery. Most fund raisers do not last more than a year because you can not sustain the enthusiasm longer than that. People want results quickly.  I remember when I was asking the Washington State Patrol to participate in an event with their motorcycle team, I ended up with a conversation with the Superintendent and he said you’d be surprised how many con artists try to scam the State Patrol and Police. Law enforcement can always run credit checks and background checks and give you a thumps up or down based on what they find. It is very advantageous to have police members and politicians on your board to help you out. NEVER let someone else control the money for you. We’ll take care of everything is a dead giveaway. Sometimes it is not the company but the representative. Check them both out. Of course the con has an answer for everything and they have phony friends to back them up. If they appear to be slick, they probably are. BE VERY CAREFUL HERE.


Now check out page three with 8, 9, & 10.


My Best Advice on
Fund Raising

by Randall Tomaras


Page one


Page two


Page three



10 point
non-profit Sniff Test


10 point
Dos and Don'ts
of Fund Raising


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