Organizing a fundraising campaign is a massive undertaking, but it’s also one of the most rewarding ways to support your faith and your community. If you are trying to decide on what kind of fundraiser will work best for your church, here are some important considerations to keep in mind:

  • What is your goal? What will the money be used for specifically? Supporters like to know exactly what they’re donating to and how much they’ve helped you to reach that goal.
  • Who is your target demographic of supporters? Knowing whom you’re asking will allow you to hone your fundraising efforts.
  • What fundraisers have been done in the past? Why were they successful? Why were they unsuccessful? Figure out exactly what worked in the past, and what didn’t. Don’t reinvent the wheel if you don’t need to. If you can streamline your efforts, you’ll save time and be more successful.

Choose your fundraiser carefully. Be clear about your goals, and don’t be afraid to diversify your efforts, so you don’t burn out your supporters. To get your creative juices flowing, we’ve put together a list of 3 of the top fundraising ideas for churches that net big returns:

Pledge Events

A pledge event can raise a huge amount of funds. Pledge events are a fun and hands-on activity for the entire community. We’ve seen churches put on successful pledge events, like a walk-a-thon, a bowl-a-thon, a golf-a-thon, and even a dance-a-thon. These can easily be turned into a fun night out for the whole community. For something a little less hands-on and labor intensive, consider a read-a-thon.

If you’re fundraising through a walk-a-thon, have a participant collect a certain dollar amount for every mile walked. For a read-a-thon, consider asking for a pledge for each book read in a certain time frame.

For maximum results, create a pledge-event website. Then, have your participants register on the site and create a personalized web page. Participants can promote or link to their page through friends, family, and various social media accounts. All donations raised go directly to your church’s fundraiser. The more participants, the bigger the return!

Pledge events like this are such an effective and easy way to fundraise, because they rely on both the church and community to work together, with no one solely responsible for the fundraising.

The Infamous 50/50 Raffle

This fundraising event may just be the easiest event your church ever sponsors. The premise is simple. There is no researching for event locations or hours spent contacting local businesses asking for donated prizes.

The whole concept is to sell raffle tickets. The money for every ticket sold goes into the pot. At the end of your sale, draw one ticket as the winner. The total money collected is then split straight down the middle. Fifty percent of the proceeds go to your church fundraiser and fifty percent of the proceeds go to the owner of the winning ticket.

Consider using specially printed event tickets rather than the traditional inexpensive roll of paper tickets. You’ll provide a more personalized experience for the participants, and you’ll be able to promote your event. Custom-printed tickets can feature your church name, logo, or even your favorite scripture.

The 50/50 raffle is one of the most successful fundraising activities and requires the least amount of labor and time commitment of the fundraising committee. Best of all, it is nearly impossible to mess up, making it a great first option for those new to the fundraising experience.

Fundraising Cards

Church FundraiserFundraising cards are one of the most profitable fundraising efforts you can invest in. The only upfront work you’ll need to do is reaching out to local businesses, and coming up with a design that has optimal visual appeal.

Once your card is created, supporters purchase the fundraiser discount card from your church. The card entitles them to receive certain benefits from participating business such as discounts, deals, and VIP access. For even more convenience, couple your wallet-sized discount card with a key tag.

The cards not only promote your fundraising campaign, but they also promote the businesses that participate by offering discounts. It’s a win-win situation for all involved. The cards can be designed for a particular upcoming event or season, so your church can choose a special design for holidays.

Alternatively, you could follow the lead of many successful fundraising organizations who choose to do an annual card. Some businesses choose to offer a full year worth of discounts, which are in turn renewed with the purchase of the next year’s card.

Many discount-card sellers are pleasantly surprised to find that card purchasers look forward to the release of a new card year after year. This built-in market is especially useful for churches that have an ongoing need for donations.

Church fundraising is a rewarding undertaking that comes with its own unique set of challenges. Fundraising coordinators need to be overly cautious of burning out their target audience. Unlike a school booster club that is constantly dealing with an influx of new players, cheerleaders, and parents every year, a church is likely to have the same members year after year. Hopefully, your church grows and continues to expand its spiritual reach as time goes on, but choosing your fundraising causes and campaigns carefully helps to ensure that your core audience remains engaged. A productive fundraiser begins by knowing your target audience’s wants and needs.