Fund Raiser Success

ruby jewel cookies

No recipe today, hope you don’t mind. Instead, I wanted to share the great results of our fundraiser to support Cookies for Kid’s Cancer.

We hosted a bake sale in the building I work at, where we sold cookies for $5. We also (attempted) an online giveaway here on the blog to solicit donations.

As a result of our fundraising efforts, we raised $955 dollars to benefit pediatric cancer research – $45 short of our $1,000 goal but still a significant achievement. Keep in mind that OXO is matching that dollar for dollar, meaning we really raised $1,910!
(If you’d like to help us close that $45 shortfall, you can donate here. Even $5 helps!)

A huge thank you is due to Hudson Horizons, the web development and internet marketing agency I work at. My colleagues there bought $300 worth of cookies – that’s a lot of cookies!

Further thanks (huge thanks!) goes to my boss, the President of Hudson Horizons, Daryl Bryant (also blogger and author at MS Living Symptom Free), who graciously decided that Hudson Horizons would match dollar for dollar all donations made by employees.

So, a huge thank you to my amazing coworkers and boss, and huge thank you to the family and friends who also made donations.

Cookies packages and ready for distribution

5 Lessons Learned

This was our first ever fund raising effort. I thought I would share a few lessons learned, and my thoughts on the successes and failures, should you attempt one. I hope to do another fundraiser like this next year, so at the least, this will help me.

1. Give Time – We only allowed 3 weeks for the fundraiser to run. While that sounds like a lot, it really makes it difficult to prepare your “marketing” and promote it. I heard feedback from a couple people in the office building that if they knew earlier in the month more people probably would have joined.
Lesson learned, give more time.

2. Get Help - From baking the cookies, to spreading the word about the fundraiser, to actually handing out cookies, it is a lot of work! If not for the help from a few of my awesome co-workers spreading the word, my Mom helping bake cookies, and Rachel helping bake, package and keeping me organized, I’d have been overwhelmed.
Lesson learned, don’t be afraid to ask for or accept help.

3. Promote. Promote. Promote – You need to promote your bake sale fund raiser otherwise you won’t sell a single cookie. Offline, print out flyers, send out emails, and even go door to door (we did, it works). Get out the word.

Online, well, you may be on your own with this. I attempted an online giveaway, where I asked for donations to be eligible to win cookies that I’d ship out. I didn’t get a single donation. I thought it was a good idea, but it turned out a big failure. I am disappointed with myself, and am not faulting readers or other bloggers.

When it came to marketing and promoting this online, I stunk. Which is really sad when you think about it because I am an Internet Marketer by day. Maybe the idea was good but the execution failed? I don’t know. I’ll be thinking about this one.
Lesson learned, start promoting as early as you can, and try to get the support of others to help promote as well.

4. Limit your cookie options – Assuming you do a similar fund raiser, limit your options. I offered 6 cookies, and even though my Mom baked one of them, 5 was still a lot. Then again, I have a toddler and an infant, making it more difficult. Anyway…
Lesson learned, don’t overestimate yourself. Be realistic about what you can bake and accomplish given your resources and available help.

5. Get involved – I’ve donated, but never organized or run a fundraiser myself. I guess I was never emotionally invested in one. This one, for kids cancer, struck a cord in me. Not because my kids, thank God, have cancer, but because I can’t imagine that happening. So, I decided to take part in the fundraiser. And I’m glad I did! :)
Lesson learned, getting involved isn’t a bad thing!

One again, to everyone who donated and helped make this fundraiser a success – thank you!

 

 

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