Cookies, and cakes, and pies! Oh my! There are few things as classic (and delicious) as an old-fashioned bake sale. They’re a perfect summery way to raise money for your favorite cause. Here are all the things you’ll need to think about when you’re planning your bake sale:
In order to pull off a bake sale, you’re going to need a lot of volunteers. Start by recruiting people who are willing to help you plan. Once you’ve assembled a committee, start delegating different tasks. You’ll need volunteers for the day of the sale, people who are in charge of promotional efforts, and, of course, bakers.
No matter when it is, a bake sale is always a good idea. But in order to make the most of your event, you should find a date that will draw attention. Is there a specific day or month that is dedicated to your specific cause? Is there a big festival in town that will attract lots of visitors?
Just as in business, location is everything for bake sales. Pick a high-traffic area like outside of a supermarket or inside a mall. Wherever you decide to have it, be sure to contact the manager or other authority in charge of the space. You may not need a permit, but you will definitely need permission.
Ah, the centerpiece of the event. Encourage your bakers to get creative or break out the old family recipes. In addition to the typical assortment of sweets, be sure to include some gluten-free, nut-free and healthier options.
Beyond Baked Goods
Don’t limit yourself to baked treats only. Consider selling lemonade, iced tea, or coffee, too. Non-edible items can also be big sellers. For example, if you’re raising money for a children’s home, have the kids make crafts to sell. It’s an excellent way to tie in the purpose of the event.
Presentation is key, so put some thought into the packaging. Sell cookies and brownies individually as well as in large batches. Also, be sure to include an ingredient list or recipe with each item so customers can look for any possible allergens.
Social media is going to be your best bet for promotion. Have people pin the recipes of what they’ll be making in a group Pinterest board or share photos of the baking process on Facebook. Get all volunteers on deck to tweet, post, Snapchat and Instagram the event for maximum exposure. But don’t forget about more traditional methods. Hang up flyers in public places and contact local news media to see if they’d be willing to write a story about the event or let you talk on live radio or TV.
Contact local businesses to see if they would be willing to donate to the event or match profits. Your favorite bakeries might consider contributing some of their best items to the bake sale, too. Getting sponsorship might seem like a long shot, but you’ll never know until you ask.