If you're looking for an effective way to raise money for your group or organization that doesn't involve selling people items they don't really want or need, consider holding a coupon book fundraising event. The next time you need to raise money, do this instead of taking orders for a consumer product.
What Is Coupon Book Fundraising?
Selling coupon books can be a terrific way for all types of nonprofit organizations to raise money. This type of fundraiser simply involves selling booklets that contain certificates for discounts on various types of products and services. Coupons are an effective way to raise money because they have such a large audience, with over 90% of Americans using coupons for shopping.
Reselling Coupon Books
Most organizations enter into an agreement to sell booklets that have been created by a professional fundraising company. Several companies specialize in working with nonprofit organizations who wish to make money through this type of fundraising sale. If you find this approach to fundraising to be appealing, shop around to find the best deal for your organization before selecting a coupon book vendor.
Choosing a Coupon Book Fundraising Program
When evaluating coupon book vendor options, several factors need to be considered. It's certainly important to select a fundraising program that allows your group to keep a nice percentage of total sales to maximize your earnings. However, that is not the only important factor to evaluate when making your decision. You'll want to review the contents of the books themselves, so you can be certain that they contain offers that your supporters are likely to be interested in and that can be used in your local area. You'll also want to verify whether you will be required to commit to a minimum purchase or if you'll be responsible for submitting payment only for the number of books sold by the hard-working volunteers working on your campaign.
Coupon Book Fundraising Companies
Some of the most widely known coupon book fundraising companies are:
- Attractions Dining and Value Guide provide coupons for locations in North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia. You don't need to buy the books up front to fundraise and the non-profit or school can earn up to 50% profit from the sale of the books.
- Community Fundraising Books has coupon books available for four areas in Georgia including greater Athens, greater Gainesville, Snellville, Loganville, Grayson and Monroe and Lawrenceville, Buford and Suwanee. The program is designed for fundraising for all levels of schools, including colleges, as well as school clubs, bands, sports teams and PTAs. Churches, church clubs and community charities and clubs are also eligible. Groups can earn 50% profit from the sale of the books and books that are not sold can be returned for full credit.
- SaveAround has been in the fundraising business for over 40 years. They have coupon books for 170 markets with discounts for local, regional and national companies. Purchasing a book also gives buyers access to a mobile app and online printable coupons. SaveAround Coupon Books are $25 each.
- KidStuff Coupon Books are designed to help raise money for schools, from daycares through high schools. Buyers can purchase the books in person or your school can set up an online link for purchasers to use. There are KidStuff Coupon book editions available for cities in Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania. KidStuff Coupon Books are $25 each and schools can keep 50% of the profit or schools earn $10 from sales from the online link.
- The Entertainment Book has been around for over 55 years. The coupon book includes a mobile app and fundraisers get a customizable website with their own fundraising tools as part of their plan. The book is available for over 10,000 cities in North America. An organization can sell the books from the online store without purchasing any inventory, and buyers can use each organization's unique store to buy a book for their own location, even if they don't live in the area of the host organization.
How Much Do Coupon Books Cost?
Each program has their own pricing structure, so you should make sure that the profit margin makes sense for your organization or school. Coupon books can range from $25 to $35 with a typical profit margin of around 50%. You will also need to determine how much funds you have on hand to purchase the books, although some programs allow you to sell the books directly to consumers without you having to buy them up front. If you do need to buy them up front, you should also find out about their return policy in case you have inventory left over that you cannot sell.
Create Your Own Coupon Books
In some cases, rather than reselling existing booklets, nonprofit organizations choose to solicit advertisers for the purpose of creating their own coupon books. While this type of coupon book fundraising project is more time consuming than one that involves reselling books that have been organized by another company, there are several benefits associated with doing everything yourself.
Local Business Recruitment
If your group recruits advertisers to include coupons in its books, you can earn advertising sales revenue in addition to the fee you'll make for selling the finished product to your organization's supporters. Before that can happen, though, you'll have to convince local business owners and managers that they can benefit from including coupons for their products and services in your booklet. Once you sell ads, you'll have to create the layout and design for the finished product and have it printed.
Offer Unique Coupons
Another benefit of making your own books filled with discount offers to sell is that you won't have to worry about a competitor marketing a product that is identical to yours. If your organization tackles the project of creating its own books to sell, the finished product will be truly unique since the advertisers will be companies that your volunteers recruited. You won't run across potential customers who may already have the same booklet you are selling, as no other group will have a finished product that is exactly the same as yours.
How to Print Your Own Coupon Books
You'll need to have a printer that you can work with to create the books, and you may even be able to find a printer willing to give you a large discount in change for providing their own advertising on the books. The books can be designed in a simple program such as Microsoft Word or with a design program like Adobe InDesign. Creating your own book can be more work, but if you can solicit the volunteer services of a graphic designer, this can make the production much less expensive. Before deciding on this route, talk to printers about the cost of the book's production and make a budget. You'll need to find enough local sponsors willing to help provide funds for the book's printing, or have the funding on hand to cover the cost. Be sure as well with your budget that your expenses for book production will be covered by the sale of the books and the profit will be substantial enough to make it a valid fundraising vehicle. If not, the pre-made fundraising books may be a better option for your organization.
Get Ready for Success
Whether you decide to sell an existing coupon book or to accept the challenge of creating and marketing your own collection of discount offers, this type of fundraiser can be very successful. As with any campaign intended to raise money, the results you enjoy will be directly responsible to the skills, commitment, and efforts of your committee members and volunteers.