Because Fairy Cakes and Chocolate Brownies
Can help change the world!
Bake sales have long been a staple of many groups fundraising activities particularly church and school groups. Volunteers and supporters of your cause bake and donate cakes, cookies, buns, muffins, pies and biscuits. These are then sold to raise funds.
Easy to organise, set up and run they are a reliable fundraiser that can bring in a surprising amount of cash and raise your groups profile.
There are plenty of reasons why bake sales work so well for all sorts of fundraising groups:
You really need to have one or two people in charge in order to plan and arrange for cake contributions.
The first thing that should be agreed upon is the date of the sale and where.
This can depend on a lot of other factors when making your plans. Some groups will be big enough to hold a stand alone event, for instance in a shopping mall or town centre (if permission can be obtained). Other groups will combine their bake sale with other fundraising activities for instance a church fete or school summer fair.
You might want to avoid clashing with other events such as national sporting occasions, public holidays, school holidays, elections etc.
On the other hand following the Fundraisers Motto -
If you see a crowd sell them something!
certain events might be a perfect opportunity for a crack team of bake sale volunteers to set up and make a fortune by piggybacking on a national or local event. Check local calendars, other charity events and church and school schedules to see where you might be able to spot an opportunity.
The success of a bake sale depends of course on yummy cakes and cookies being made by your supporters. You need to ask them in good time.
If your bake sale is to be quite big Do not rely simply on flyers and other publicity for contributions.
A personal ask from the organiser will nearly always ensure that something is made and delivered. The organiser may like to also have a quick ring round a few days before the sale just to confirm and pass on details of where to deliver the cakes etc.
Most people will be prepared to make cakes without being paid for ingredients. It is the job of the organiser however to ensure that people on a restricted budget are not disadvantaged.
A personal invitation also allows the organiser to keep an eye on who is baking what and avoid too much duplication. Though some kids may feel you can never have too many chocolate krispie cakes!
The whole essence of a bake sale is that the goods should really be home-made rather than shop bought. In many ways that is what people are buying into, the fact that someone has put something of themselves into the event.
In a commercial world this is how your event, and cakes on offer can stand out. This is your decision and depends on your group's situation and resources. You will get better results however with home-made rather than shop-bought offerings.
Hopefully you have chosen a good location with plenty of footfall. Use flyers, posters, A boards etc to send people your way.
Don't forget also that a bake sale is a great opportunity to raise the profile of your group or cause. You may like to invite the local press to the event (make sure they arrive before too many cakes are sold). If you are doing this try to find a good angle ie Local children raise funds for earthquake victims etc.
Don't forget either to take photos of your stall (and volunteers manning it) yourself for your own publicity, newsletter, website etc.
As with so many things presentation is everything. Paying attention to the small details is important. Your cakes are unique, home-made and a really special treat. Presenting them as beautifully as possible allows you to show them off as that and….charge just that little bit more!
And finally don't forget…..
You also need to have enough volunteers to man the stall.
You might want to arrange a shift system particularly at an event where your volunteers may also like to have a look around themselves.
Not as silly as it sounds; giving your cakes good names can increase sales, prices and the sense of fun at your event.
So rather than a glum looking notice announcing fairy cakes - 30p try something like Sebastian's Special Fairy Wonders! Rather than Victoria Sponge how about Victoria's Secret Passion. Rather than Brownies how about Brownie Delights. Rather than currant buns how about Susan's Sultana Sensations.
You may like to add a local angle how about West Street Wonders or Blue Mountain Rocky Roads. Sports teams might also like to have cakes iced in their colours etc.
It really is time for a bit of imagination Get the thesaurus out.
Pricing the goods at a bake sale is not always easy and very much depends on what is on offer and where your sale is taking place. At school fairs where it is often trays of brownies, fairy cakes, muffins etc 20p - 30p / 50 cents each is probably about right. Posh slices of Victoria sponge however at a more up-market attraction could be sold for a lot more. Don't be afraid to offer plenty of deals such as 20p each or 6 for £1.00 etc
With larger sponges you may be able to sell the complete cake to take home rather than individual slices.
Towards the end of your sale drop your prices and increase your deals in order to not be left with too much stock.
If your sale is part of a larger event left over bigger cakes can also be auctioned towards the end of the day.
Why just sell someone a slice of cake when you could also sell them a cup of tea, coffee or even an entire strawberry cream tea. Look for ways to offer anything extra that will make you extra cash. Recipe cards or charity cookbooks are another money-making opportunity.
You can also look for ways to make your cake stall just that bit more exciting. How about having your volunteers in fancy dress.
As always make sure that you thank your volunteers both those who baked and those who manned the stall. Announce the total raised as soon as possible.
Then of course its time for feet up, a cup of tea and....a nice piece of cake!
Do you know any great bake sale recipes?
Share them with other people around the world.
And read the recipes sent in by visitors to this web-site
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