The answers to this question might be the most important one on this blog.
At FansRaise, we've been helping organizations run crowdfunding campaigns for a while, and we've seen some campaigns CRUSH goals, and others progress very slowly.
When analyzing campaign results, we look at key metrics that are completely within the control of the group such as member participation behaviors (average participation from each member), average donation amount, and contact -> donor percentage (how many donors are successfully developed from each student's list).
We are in the position of seeing what works and what doesn't produce results.
There are 3 big no-no's that we would like to help your group avoid, if at all possible:
The Org director or executive sponsor wishes to remain "arms-length" from your fundraising effort.
Let's take a typical marching band ensemble. In many high school settings, everything begins/ends with the band director. The director's primary responsibility is to get the very best results from the kids.
That band director may choose to remain removed form matters related to fundraising (I know I did this when I had my programs). In many fundraising campaigns that the program may run, this isn't necessary a limiter.
Within a FansRaise campaign - the core benefit is the student participation element of a campaign. If the students WILL embrace the (small amount of) work involved and meet the challenge head-on.
Students will get involved when the director MAKES it important by talking about it, and stressing the importance. We've prepared a nice set of talking points to make that talk easier to give - plus we will also put together customized explainer videos for your group at your request!
If the band director chooses to punt the campaign to his/her band boosters to try to drive - the program may still run a highly successful campaign in terms of funds raised versus time and effort spent.
The campaign focus is neither general nor specific, or otherwise tough to figure out.
Some groups choose to undertake campaigns for very ultra-specific goals, or very general goals built around general overhead costs.
Either of these can work perfectly well as a FansRaise campaign, but the campaign page and the messaging needs to reflect the same thing. Groups that wish to completely "own" their page designs and email messaging sometimes misalign these two components.
When putting together your ASK on your campaign page - show it to someone else before you decide to publish it. Does it come across the way intended? Does the reader instantly understand the clear intent?
The student involvement is overlooked.
The magic bullet that FansRaise offers is the structure we've built into our platform systems. This structure is useful when engaging your students or membership, as we allow you to measure activity and behavior for the best results.
Peter Drucker, noted business management guru once said "What gets measured gets managed." This has also been expressed as "What gets measured can be IMPROVED".
When your students realize that you can see activity details, such as how many contacts "Johnny" has entered, how many of those emails are undeliverable (did he make up fake Gmail addresses?), and how sections and groups within your group are performing as a whole, it will allow you to TALK about it (see the first point above!) with your students/members.
Remember - if the kids view your campaign as being "kind of a big deal", they will perform very well and your campaign will benefit!