Fundraising is never easy. Especially when you go to a school with approximately 200 campus clubs who are constantly hosting similar fundraisers. When it comes to raising money for something as large as National Conference, fundraisers need to be successful. Here are a few of the do’s and don’ts that I’ve learned about fundraising on campus as a past PRSSA Finance Director.
DO have interactive fundraisers!
One of our most successful fundraisers to this day is “Plant with PRSSA”. For this, we purchase succulents, flower pots, and soil and gave students the option to plant their succulents with us for an additional fee of $2 (to cover the cost of the pot and soil)! This makes the fundraiser more personal and allows the opportunity for students to ask questions about what PRSSA is and why you are having the fundraiser.
DON’T expect your product to sell itself!
Interact with the students that walk by. Ask them how their day was, explain what PRSSA is! After all, we are communication students. Understand that although everyone might not take this to mean something, others might need that small push in order to actually purchase the product you are selling! Instead of sitting behind the table the whole time, have one person walk around (wearing a PRSSA shirt of course) and tell the people walking by that you are doing a fundraiser!
DO consider accepting Venmo as a form of payment!
Most college students do not carry cash around but almost everyone has their phone on them! Venmo is the quick alternative and the reason why a student might choose to participate in your fundraiser! Make sure you have a Venmo handle that is easy to type in. It is no secret that college students are very busy and have little time to waste. With that being said, it is up to the organization to make fundraisers as quick and convenient as possible for potential college-age customers!
DON’T wait until the last minute to advertise!
As mentioned before, college students are busy! They need to be reminded as much as possible about upcoming events! Include colorful graphics and make your posters stand out among the hundreds of others that are hung up across campus! Make a Facebook event in which you have every PRSSA member invite their friends so that it gets shared with as many people as possible. The way you advertise makes all the difference when it comes to how successful a fundraiser can be!
DO dare to be different!
Try a fundraiser that no one else on campus has done! Whether it be an idea you found on Pinterest or one that PRSSA members came up with it, try it out! You would be surprised at how interested students might be at a fundraiser that is not similar to ones that are done constantly by other clubs. If your new fundraiser does not work you do not have to do it again but it is always better to try!
Fundraising is not an easy task but by generating new ideas, making fundraisers convenient for students and advertising in fun ways, you are sure to have fundraisers that are more successful. What are some fundraisers that you and your Chapter have had success with? Leave a comment down below!
Jolene Levesque is a junior at American University in Washington, DC. Last year, she served as AU PRSSA’s Finance Director.