When selecting a crowdfunding campaign GOAL, there are special considerations that need to be addressed.
Every program needs money, but the purpose for that money will range across three main buckets:
(1) Capital Campaigns – these campaign are for large, mission-critical purchases that pose significant strain on the organization. We would classify things like physical facilities, trucks/trailers/transportation, uniforms/costuming (that will hang around for several years – not season or show-dependent thematic designs) and large equipment as part of this category.
(2) Student/Participant Fees – every program asks SOMETHING along the lines of tuition, activity fees, ‘fair-share’ fees, as well as fees for things like band trips and other individual student costs.
(3) Specific Equipment Sets – this category would include things like “I need new marching percussion battery equipment”, or “New amplification, mics, and soundboard for the front ensemble, or “I need new marching low brass”. Guard equipment, harmony and color woodwind instruments, etc – and the list will go on and on. The primary difference with this category is that the equipment is only used by a small subset of your group (this is key and very important).
When you plan your campaign, normally we counsel ensembles and organization to target the most significant need that affects the largest percentage of your kids…
Now, subject the three categories above to that criteria (“The most significant need that affects the largest percentage of your kids…”)
(1) Most of the time, Capital Campaigns would tend to be the choice. They typically benefit close to 100% of your student participants directly – or at least you could educate students and their families on why it’s important to have 100% of everyone on-board.
(2) While all students will be subject to Student/Participant fees, many students’ families will just “pay” and not opt-into a fundraising experience, unless there is a compelling reason to.
(3) With regards to “Specific Equipment Sets” – it issuing to be difficult to get your color guard excited about a fundraising campaign for new drumline equipment (that they are never allowed to TOUCH, let alone play). Will your clarinets be excited for the delivery of those new tubas? Probably not.
Focus on the most important needs that TOUCH 100% of your participants, and then focus your efforts on covering that. Re-allocate and move money around to cover the rest as part of your strategic budgeting, but focus your crowdfunding effort on achieving 100% student engagement, and that will give you the most ‘bang-for-the-buck’.