Eye on the Prize – Using Fundraising Incentives

20 Mar

Let’s face it – rewards are great motivators. Offering prizes and other incentives has been proven, time and again, to be the most effective way of driving participation in fundraising efforts. So, how does your school or organization decide what will inspire and encourage your team to meet (or exceed!) your goals?

Incentives are an essential part of your fundraising strategy – so it’s important to get them right. Here are some tried and true tips from Popcorn Palace, designed to help you make the best choice for your campaign.

  • Ask others for guidance. Check in with others in your area who have fundraising experience – ask them what has worked within your community, previously. And, ask your Popcorn Palace representative for ideas about offering delicious, gourmet prizes!
  • Plan a great launch! Kick your fundraiser off with a launch gathering or special event, and use the opportunity to rally excitement about your campaign. This is a great time to show off the rewards and prizes you’ll be offering, and encourage your community to participate.
  • Set achievable goals. A focus on participation is more successful than one which emphasizes total sales. If possible, offer at least one reward for each participant – and use a tiered system to award additional prizes or incentives for those who go meet and exceed additional goals.
  • Keep their eyes on the prize. Don’t wait until the very end of the campaign to distribute prizes – awarding incentives while your fundraiser is still active will encourage sustained participation, and maximize your campaign’s exposure to the community.
  • Offer experiences. Not all incentives need be in the form of physical prizes – try offering your participants experience­based rewards, and you may find yourself retaining more budget. Students, for instance, may be motivated by playful ideas – such as special recess privileges, or getting a teacher or administrator to dye their hair. Think outside the box – or even ask your participants for ideas!
  • Award honors to team leaders. Drive the action by offering rewards to teachers for class participation, or incentives to team leaders who inspire their community.
  • Provide prize layers. Offer something for everyone, by providing a variety of layered prizes. When possible, allow participants the choice between two awards when reaching their goals – for instance, letting students choose between a special privilege pass, or a gourmet snack from Popcorn Palace.
  • Give public accolades. Acknowledge your top fundraisers publicly, by posting their names to your organization’s website. If possible, hold an awards ceremony at campaign closing, to thank your supporters publicly (and provide one final boost to your campaign).

For more ideas on how to increase your fundraising sales and maximize your campaign’s effectiveness, contact your Popcorn Palace representative, today!


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