Back to blog

Improvements your PTA/PTO should be making this school year

August 10, 2020

Improvements your PTA/PTO should be making this school year

We can all agree that 2020 is ... something else. Because of that, your school and community need your PTA/PTO more than ever right now. If you're sending emails to parents and selling memberships online, you should feel good about getting online activities in place this year. And, there still more that you can do virtually. As we all get used to conducting more of our daily lives online, here are five tips that will help you keep your school community engaged and feeling supported.

Tip #1: Tailor your communication

When you get emails from your favorite stores, they do a much better job of making you interested if they highlight products that are things you'd actually consider buying, right? It's the same for your newsletters and PTA communications to parents. Sending them information that is specific and relevant to them is going to be much more helpful and valuable.

There are lots of ways you can target your communications to parents depending on what you'd like to share. For example, you can communicate to specific groups like grade levels, classrooms, committees, and more. For Givebacks users, you can set up "hubs" that make communicating to individual groups easy. School staff and teachers in particular love hubs for things like classroom communication and school forms.

Tip #2: Give your community a website to go to for information

While things are feeling new and different (and maybe a bit uncertain) this year, it's more important than ever for your families to hear from your PTA/PTO. Along with your other methods of communication – email, social media, text – creating a website for your organization will let you feature all your key announcements, memberships, and more. If you're a Givebacks user, creating your PTA/PTO website is easy with our website builder tool. See how it works this video guide.

Tip #3: Sell items other than memberships in your store

Giving families an online store where they can buy spirit wear or tickets to virtual events, make donations to your organization, and participate in seasonal programs is a really big deal for parents, this year in particular. Families want to show their school spirit even if they can physically be in the school building, so giving them an easy way to buy and show their support is critical.

Tip #4: Start a virtual fundraiser

PTAs, PTOs, and booster clubs lost close to an estimated $1 billion (with a B!) in fundraising dollars in the spring of 2020. This fall, fundraising dollars are in jeopardy again without the traditional in-person events like book fairs and fun runs. That's why you'll want to rethink how you raise money with a virtual PTA/PTO fundraiser.

There are so many options for online fundraisers including online raffles, virtual a-thons, crowdfunding campaigns, online auctions, sweepstakes, and more. Whichever type of virtual fundraiser you go with, when you're planning it, you'll want to consider how much your organization keeps of the money you raise. Some platforms take 25% or even more! Make sure you find a platform that let's you keep more of what you raise (pro tip: Givebacks has the lowest fees in the industry so you can keep more).

Tip #5: Experience the wonder of built-in product fundraising

This year is unique and many parents probably aren't going to be comfortable with traditional fundraisers. They aren't going to be keen to handle product fundraisers that move from hand to and, and they'll be hesitant to purchase fundraiser products that really don't want or need. Plus, the logistics of a traditional fundraiser will be especially challenging to pull off this time around. Finding a fundraising platform that offers built-in product fundraisers that are quick, easy, and virtual will make meeting your fundraising goals way easier.