To be successful at fundraising for nonprofits, think merchandise. It’s not a term that frequently comes to mind when fundraising—most people think of donations or grants. But selling merchandise is a very common way to make money. Consider one of the most famous examples—Girl Scout cookies. The Girl Scouts raise more than $700 million per year selling cookies.
Combining merchandise sales with promotional items can help boost your fundraising efforts. Studies show that 8 in 10 consumers (PDF) felt more positive about a brand that gave them a promotional product. And promotional products for nonprofits are a great way to spread awareness of your organization. For example, a single promotional bag gets more than 5,700 impressions (PDF).
No matter what you choose to sell, or where you sell it, promotional products for nonprofits can help you raise brand awareness—and funds!
Fun event swag
Research shows that 82 percent of nonprofits hold fundraising events, including golf tournaments, competitive races and galas. Selling merchandise (PDF) can help extend an event’s reach from a single day to a month, a year or more than a decade.
For example, if you’re hosting a golf outing, consider selling the beverage wrench tee holder. They can use it at your event and on many golf outings to come. Each time, they’ll remember your organization. Some nonprofit promotional items can be used as both thank-you gifts and as sellable merchandise. Give T-shirts to all the volunteers at an event, making them easier to spot. Then, sell identical shirts as a way to raise additional funds.
Create an online store
People enjoy representing a brand they support. Having an online store can give your supporters the opportunity to show off their love for your organization. Offering a variety of promotional products for nonprofits, from a classic tote to a high-quality polo shirt, can give the people who believe in your work more opportunities to spread the word.
Pop-up stand at community events
Taking part in a community event is a great way to get your brand seen by a broader audience. Setting up a pop-up stand can make people aware of your cause and the kind of work you do. If the event is outdoors, try selling a flying disk as a great way to promote both family fun and your brand. Or, get those thousands of brand impressions by selling a tote that they can use anywhere they go. Giving a free gift with each purchase can get more people to buy. The mood bracelet is ideal because it is budget-conscious, highly visible and fun—exactly what you need to get people talking about your work.
Branded nonprofit merchandise
Whether you’re offering nonprofit promotional items for sale at a charity event or making fundraising items available in your online store, selling branded swag can help you raise the funds necessary to do your important work.