Five Rules to Out-of-the-Box Fundraising (Part 5)
As the saying goes, if it can’t be measured, it can’t be managed. Although not necessarily “out-of-the-box,” tracking your fundraising efforts is one of the most important qualities of a successful fundraising organization. Best of all, it doesn’t need to be complicated.
Rule Five: Track Your Fundraising
First, be sure you have a secure place to store the money. If you have help from parents or boosters, it’s a good practice to allow only a few trusted people to access the money, and to have a “check and balance” system ensuring that two eyes are monitoring all transactions. Make regular deposits so the amount of money you are holding at any given time is limited.
Second, begin to track how much money has been raised, who raised it, and how much still needs to be raised to accomplish your goals. Each group may have their own parameters for what needs to be tracked depending on what kind of fundraising you are doing. Just because it is customized, doesn’t mean it needs to be complicated. Setting up an Excel spreadsheet is the simplest way to go about this. If you aren’t Excel savvy, there is likely a colleague or student who can set up a document for you in just a few minutes. Show students their updated balance in Excel, at regular intervals, to eliminate confusion and ensure each student knows where they stand.
Finally, track the overall fundraising effort in a place that everyone can see. A traditional “thermometer” (which you fill in with red marker as you get closer to your goal) is a simple way to do this. Each day students can see how close the group is to the goal, giving them a little bit of encouragement.
This concludes our series on fundraising. Check out our previous installments on maximizing profits, partnering with local businesses, receiving help from your students’ parents, and leveraging the talents of your students. Best wishes for a successful year of fundraising!
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