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With so many fundraising ideas out there, which one is best for your group/cause? There are many factors worth considering when deciding which idea will help you reach your goals. After all, your time and efforts are finite resources.  When creating a fundraising strategy, these key principles will keep you focused.

1. Your volunteers are your most valuable asset.

Who are your volunteers? What do they like/dislike doing? Would they mind selling products? Or give up their time to create a big fundraising event like a dinner or dance? Do they prefer doing other tasks? Keeping in mind that not everyone is the same, take stock of your volunteer program.  Who can help you organize? Who enjoys meeting and talking with other community members? Who has social media skills?

2. KISS (Keep It Simple Silly)

How complicated is the fundraiser? Today, technology has presented a significant cognitive load on people. Their attention and energy is very limited. The simpler you can make your fundraiser, the easier it is for all types of people to participate. By creating a simple, organized system, you will keep your efforts moving toward your ultimate financial goal.

3. Scaleable and repeatable work best.

What is your fundraising goal? If your initial attempt at fundraising didn’t make the mark, can you create a new fundraiser and get participation from new donors? Or do you need to create a different fundraiser?

4. Lots of hands make little work.

When weighing your fundraising options, consider how easy it is for your current supporters to reach out and get other potential donors involved in your cause. Word of mouth is still the single most effective donor magnet.  The best fundraisers are inclusive and allow for anyone to make a contribution.

5. Spending more doesn’t always mean earning more.

If you know who your donors are, how they can be reached, and you offer a service, you can generate a nice profit with little to no overhead.

In summary, if you live in Michigan, collecting returnable bottles and cans is easy and effortless.  This type of fundraiser aligns to all five principles listed above.  It’s easy, repeatable, and many community residents are happy to have you take their empties back to the store knowing that the proceeds are benefiting your group or team. For more information, check out our post on the top 5 benefits of recycling.