Balloons may not be the first thing that comes to mind when you’re thinking fundraising, but they can be an inexpensive and easy way to inject some fun (and certainly some colour) into your next fundraiser. From fetes to trivia nights and awards dinners, balloons are versatile enough to adapt to a range of events. Here we bring you 5 ideas that take advantage of the marvellous balloon!
1. Great Balloon Pop
You’ll need enough balloons to cater for your audience (as many as you think you can sell) and ideally helium to fill them. Make a list of all the prizes that you have and write them on a piece of paper (or numbers) that can be slipped into each balloon before it’s inflated. Winning slips could refer to the prize and the remaining balloons will say “better luck next time”.
Depending on the value of your prize or prizes, you can sell your balloons for anything from $5 up to $50 each or even higher if you have a standout major prize and limited entries available. To create an atmosphere of excitement, wait until all balloons are sold before popping them (although this will only work for certain events). A dramatic ‘countdown’ before everyone ‘pops’ will add atmosphere.
2. Simple Balloon Pop
Of course, this doesn’t have to always be done on a grand scale. Simplify it and use the same concept for a dress down day/school disco/end of year fun activity for students. Prizes could include a $10 or $5 tuckshop vouchers, chocolate bars, bag of lollies/chips or getting away from food, books, iTunes vouchers, products from Smiggle or Typo (kids LOVE stationery!). But make sure they clean up the mess afterwards! Oh, and you might want to skip the helium for the kids. I’d have them popping as you go along – can you imagine it happening all at once?!?
3. Fete Stall
Having a fete? You can use balloons as a side show alley stall. Sort your prizes into 3 categories. 1 for cheapest prizes and 3 for the best ones. Inflate and number the balloons and pin them to a backing board. Mark your throwing line and use darts to pop them. 3 darts for $5 and of course not every balloon has to be a winner.
You’ll need to click through to the website for the final two ideas, but here is a bonus tip: talk to local businesses about sponsoring your event by donating the balloons, string and the helium to ensure your profits are maximised. Also, make sure you have a team on hand for the inflation process. It could take a while! See the remaining two tips here.
4. “Guess how many?”
Engage a car yard or rental car company as your sponsor, or a sponsor that has a company car and have them bring one of their car to your event. Fill the car to capacity with inflated balloons and punters can pay to guess how many balloons fit into the car. Correct or closest guess wins the prize. This is a great branding opportunity for your sponsor and with some great salesmanship, you could even get them to donate a prize – perhaps a luxury car hire for a weekend? Great for fetes or larger events where your sponsor will get enormous exposure for their brand.
5. Balloon race or relay
These are fun game for trivia nights or fetes and you make your money by charging an entry fee. For trivia night setting, the winning team gets bonus points and in the fete setting, you can have a winners’ prize. For fetes, advertise the time the race will be run and allow as many teams as you have room for.
Your relay team can consist of 4 or more people. Line up the team and place a chair at the front of the line. Give each person an inflated balloon (or if you want to make it more challenging, have them inflate the balloon as part of the game). They are then required to run to a marked line and back with the balloon between their legs without dropping it. If they drop it, they must put it back between their legs before continuing or if you want to be nasty, start again. Once they return to the line they must pop the balloon by sitting on it on the chair before their next team member can run. First team to have all balloons popped is the winner. I guarantee you’ll have lots of laughs with this one!
aka the Fundraising Whisperer