Develop your message to fund your baseball maintenance projects

"Develop Your Fund Raising Message"
The hidden secret
of fund raising success
for your baseball field projects

Why do you exist? What are you accomplishing?
Why should someone help you?


You must make yourself standout

Lessons learned as the president of the baseball booster club


The best starting place... the hidden secret of fundraising success.
The weather finally turns nice enough to start thinking about baseball practice.  The excitement of a new season starts the wheels turning... schedules, practices, work days, equipment and supplies to purchase, people to contact... and on it goes.

You're ready to whip that field into shape.  All you need is a little money and you are set!  Do you start making calls, sending out letters, calling parent meetings?  Do you start fund raising by selling t-shirts, hats, and signs? Maybe.  Maybe not.

From my experience as a past president of a baseball booster club, you will have a better long term success funding your baseball field projects if you start with your 'reason for being'.  This  becomes your fund raising message.

Think this through.  You'll use this to market your program.  In the marketing world this is sometimes called the USP (unique selling proposition) or the 'reason for being.'  A fund raising message without a reason for being is just too vague to get many folks to commit money to your program.

You use this to create the perception that what you are doing is unique, special, or different.  You emphasize that in your promotions.

You are reading this because you're involved in a youth program.  You are committed enough to get involved in the fund raising. 

Here's how you come up with a clear statement for program's reason for being.  This works whether it's little league, PONY, high school, or college.  Whether it's boys or girls.  Whether it's baseball, softball, or any other sport or activity.

Complete the sentence below: (this helps you develop your fund raising message)

"My program helps (whom?) do (what?) better than any other program in the world by (how?)."

Here's how I used this for a youth baseball team I worked with:
Draft ideas:

  • We teach young men to take personal responsibility
  • Where young men learn to succeed
  • Helping you in life and getting ready to go out in the real world
  • A Christian moral environment to establish a young man’s lifelong habits for success
  • Help establish a young man’s lifelong habits for success

    I worked with these to complete the sentence like this:

"This program helps young men develop life long habits for success by combining athletics, character building, and personal responsibility.   The program is run by experts who don't just teach baseball, but have demonstrated success with 6 straight years of championships and 7 players with college scholarships." 

You need to think about your own program and complete the sentence.  Develop your own fund raising message.

I worked with this and settled on two short phrases:

  • Developing lifelong habits for success
  • Helping young men develop lifelong habits for success

Then I talked with some of the players about the character building part of the program.  Here's what they told me they were learning in their own words:

  • Discipline, Diligence, Respect, Friendship, Teamwork, & Personal Responsibility

I put these two ideas into every flyer, every handout, every fundraising letter, and every verbal message about the team whether it was for fundraising or not.  I used it enough it just became part of what I said about the program.

The next most important point in your fund raising message is to be very specific about what you are going to use the money for.  Tell people exactly how much you need and how you are going to use it.  Don't just say, "I need money for my baseball program."  Instead say, "I need $300 for a new fence, $510 to make the field safer and more playable, and $210 for field maintenance equipment."  You'll get a better response.  Guaranteed.

This taps into the emotion of benevolence and really motivates people.  People want to make a contribution that counts.  Not just for another box of baseballs, but to be part of something bigger with a lasting accomplishment.  Of course you should also acknowledge support by advertising or promoting their support and with a thank you letter.

It all starts with your fund raising message -
the secret of fundraising success!


P.S. Want more? Once you develop your fund raising message, click here for bonus material about how you can connect with your donors.  These are the gems I learned from courses, workshops, conferences, books on the subject of successful fundraising, and really pounding the pavement raising money.  In practice I have seen these techniques raise ten times more than those who didn't use these techniques.

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