© by Rena Klingenberg; all rights reserved.
Putting on your own fundraiser jewelry shows is an easy and wonderful way to profit from your art, acquire new customers, and help others at the same time.
Usually you contact an organization and work out the details, then set up the show and sell your work, and finally donate a pre-arranged percentage of sales (usually 10% to 20%, depending on your profit margin) to the organization.
Why Would You Do Fundraisers?
Before you wonder about giving up 10% to 20% of your sales at a show – remember that with fundraiser jewelry shows, you won’t have any booth fees or competition from other jewelers. :o)
And unlike booth fees at regular shows, your donation when you do jewelry fundraisers is often tax-deductible. (Check with your accountant to be sure.)
You will likely make better-than-usual sales, too.
A major benefit to both you and your charity is that shoppers feel good knowing that part of their purchase price is going to a good cause.
So they typically buy much more generously than they normally would.
And you’ll feel good for helping a good cause too, instead of having your booth fee go into a show promoter’s pocket.
All in all, fundraiser jewelry shows can mean great money for you – plus some wonderful, positive publicity!
Where Can You Do
a Fundraiser Jewelry Show?
There are abundant opportunities for fundraiser jewelry shows.
Nearly any organization you can think of – schools, synagogues, churches, hospitals, retirement homes, sports teams, band / orchestra, scholarship programs, children’s charities, halfway houses, foundations, and other nonprofit organizations – will welcome you to put on a fundraiser in their honor!
Each organization I’ve helped with a fundraiser jewelry show has been so pleased with the way things worked out, that they’ve asked me to come back to do it again any time I want.
And they make it so easy! They help me with the advertising and publicity, provide tables for my displays, and generally bend over backwards to help me have the most successful shows possible.
They know they’ll receive a great donation if the jewelry artist has a great show!
Contact an Organization for Your
Fundraiser Jewelry Show
When you do a fundraiser jewelry show, the organization you’re donating to is usually so happy to have you doing a benefit for them that they either will do everything possible to help you, or will give you the freedom to do anything you want, anywhere you want.
If you know someone in the organization you’re doing the benefit for, you can talk to them and try to set up the event through them, or have them recommend you to the “decision making” person of the organization.
For this meeting, you want to look like this benefit will be a successful and professional event, so it helps to dress up a little.
And of course you should wear a tasteful amount of some of your best jewelry creations, too (different jewelry for each meeting with them) for eye candy, so this person – and others in the organization who see you – can be spreading the word about the jewelry you’ll be selling there.
Also for this meeting, have a supply of your business cards ready, and a one-page flyer or brochure that has appealing pictures of your work and an upbeat list of the benefits to them of having this show.
It’s best if your flyer has good, clear pictures of your jewelry.
Agree on what your fundraiser donation will be.
Sometimes it’s jewelry that they can auction off or use for another purpose.
Other times it’s a percentage of your sales (where I live, 10% to 20% of the gross sales seems to make everyone happy).
You may also want to consider creating and selling a special line of charity jewelry and donating part or all of the proceeds from it.
Arrange the Details of the Show
Working with your contact person at the organization, set a date, time, and length for the show.
Using a date that’s on or near the organization’s payday is good, and so is combining your show with another event that will already have a crowd – like a football game, play, open house, etc.
Determine who provides tables for your booth, and where the event will be. Make sure you will be in a spot where people can see something interesting is going on, and that there will be plenty of room for a lot of customers around your booth.
Check out the event area ahead of time with this contact person, so you can see if you will have any special needs like electricity, more space, or whatever.
When the basic details are settled, you should protect both parties by writing up a simple, one-page proposal outlining what’s expected of you and of them, and be sure you each have a copy.
Keep Good Notes
While Organizing Your First Fundraiser
None of this process is difficult at all, and organizing the event isn’t really very time-consuming either.
The first jewelry fundraiser you do will probably be a great learning experience.
The next time, you’ll have templates already on your computer for making the brochure, flyers, proposal/contract, press release, etc. to make things even faster.
As you set up this event, keep track of everyone you contact along the way to make the arrangements, plus their email and phone numbers, and make a brief list of everything you did to organize it. Now when they invite you to do another benefit event for them, you can breeze right through organizing it!
Once you’ve done one benefit show, you can tell other future organizations about the successful benefit you did for XYZ organization.
Promoting and Advertising:
the Keys to
Successful Fundraiser Jewelry Shows
Emphasize to the organization that the jewelry fundraiser show must have as many customers as possible to be a success!
Be sure they understand that advertising and promoting the event are essential.
Simply deciding to have a show doesn’t bring customers. And without customers, there are no sales – and no donation to make!
One great, easy way to generate all the customers you can handle is to add your fundraiser jewelry show to another event that will already have a crowd – such as a sports event, band concert, conference / meeting, etc.
And make sure your show is advertised beforehand to the crowd, so they will be prepared with checkbooks and credit cards.
Also determine who will responsible for advertising the fundraiser jewelry show – sometimes you, sometimes the organization, or more often both of you.
Suggest that they also advertise the event in their newsletter if they have one, and that they send out email announcements and put notices in all employees’ mailboxes.
See if the organization is able to put a sign out in front of their building or on their marquee (if they have one), advertising the event to the public.
Make attractive, one-page flyers or invitations advertising your fundraiser jewelry show, and on these be sure to stress in large type that it’s a benefit, and who will receive the donation.
If the show will be a great opportunity for people to shop for Christmas, Valentine’s Day, Mother’s Day, etc., be sure to emphasize this too.
Don’t forget to put the date, time, and location
of the fundraiser show on your flyer!
If the organization is printing and distributing the flyers, get a master of your flyer to them as soon as possible.
Or if you are responsible for printing, find out how many of these flyers the organization will need and get these to them.
If the event is open to the public, email or send one of the flyers to everyone on your customer list.
Get Your Fundraiser Event
in the Local Newspaper
Email a press release to your local newspaper with the details of the event.
Be sure to include a jpg photo of your jewelry, just in case they have the space to add a photo next to the article, or have the organization do this part.
Remember to save a copy of this article after it’s published, so you can impress future organizations with your experience in doing fundraiser jewelry shows!
Even a small blurb in the local newspaper can bring a crowd to your event.
See my little newspaper clipping here?
A huge percentage of our customers at that busy event told us, “I read about this show in the paper.”
You can see it was just a small article in the “Local Events” section of our town’s daily newspaper – but it brought us a big wave of customers.
Expand Your Fundraiser Show
by Adding Other Vendors
You can easily add other vendors to your benefit shows.
Invite friends who sell handcrafts, or who represent “home party” companies that sell cosmetics, candles, kitchen items, home decor, etc.
Also ask everyone you know for recommendations of people they know who sell things. And be sure to ask the organization where you’re doing this fundraiser whether they have any employees who make or sell things.
After the show, these other vendors will all donate to the organization on the same scale you are.
Have these additional vendors spread the word about the benefit show to all their customers, friends, and family members too.
A lovely benefit of adding other vendors to the show is that each vendor (including you) will be promoting the event to their friends, families, customers and mailing lists.
So you’ll be bringing all kinds of new customers to each other!
As far ahead of the event as possible, tell your contact person at the organization how many vendors there will be, so they can be ready for the size of group you will have.
Making Your Donation After the
Fundraiser Jewelry Show
The day after the benefit event, hand-deliver your donation check to the person at the organization who helped you set up the event.
Enclose your check inside a thank-you card, and include your business card.
You may also want to bring a personal thank-you gift of jewelry for your contact person – and for anyone else who went “above and beyond” to help with your event.
Tell them how much you enjoyed working with them, and how happy you are to be able to donate to their organization. Let them know you’re looking forward to doing future fundraiser jewelry shows for them, or for other organizations they may know of!
Get a receipt for your donation check if possible, for tax purposes. You don’t want to miss this deduction! (Check with your accountant to be absolutely sure you can claim this deduction.)
I always find that the positive energy generated by putting on fundraiser jewelry shows triggers all kinds of other positive events and coincidences.
To me the best thing of all is giving the organization a nice donation check after the event. Selling your jewelry and helping others at the same time . . . you can’t beat that!
Good Luck, and
Enjoy the Synergy!