Top Fundraisers for Run MS
|2014 Rock 'n' Roll USA Marathon and Half
||2014 Marine Corps Marathon
Fundraising Tips and Ideas
This is the easy part! We require all registered Run MS participants to achieve a fundraising goal. Currently, our program requires that our runners meet the following minimums* to participate in the event:
- Marine Corps Marathon: $2,000
- Rock 'n' Roll USA Marathon and Half: $1,500
The good news - we support thousands of participants in achieving their fundraising goals every year. We are here to help you make a plan, provide tips, tools, and helpful success stories from other participants to make this the easiest part of your Run MS experience.
*You MUST meet the fundraising deadlines, as indicated during registration.
Coming soon: Fundraise with Facebook app - check back soon!
On this page:
FUNDRAISING STEP BY STEP
It can be helpful to break your fund-raising process down into specific steps. As you complete each step, you draw closer to your fund-raising goal and helping thousands of people living with MS.
STEP 1: Set your goal, Identify your prospects and Self-Pledge
- Let people know what you are shooting for (remember you can always readjust to a higher amount if need be)
- Determine who to add to your list.
- Show others how serious you are about your fundraising by kickstarting your own.
STEP 2: Select your approach
Face-to-face. This is the best and most direct approach when you anticipate large pledges or when the opportunity presents itself. Approaching someone face-to-face is a more personable step that garners more positive results and support.
- Letter or e-mail. This can be one of the most efficient ways to reach a large quantity of prospects and convey important information. Remember to follow up with anyone who receives one of your letters or e-mails. Need help with letters or e-mails, then look at our Fundraising Tools and Tips.
- Telephone. Calling someone is effective as a follow-up to a letter or e-mail if you are unable to approach face-to-face.
STEP 3: Craft the style of your message
If you take a serious approach, discuss the mission of the National MS Society, the role of MS in helping the lives of thousands of individuals living with MS and the importance of your goal for the MS Rockstars fundraising program.
- A light and humorous approach can also be effective with family and close friends. It allows you to discuss the mission of the Society while adding your own personal flavor to the message.
- A combination of both approaches can be effective as well.
STEP 4: Select the format
- Form letter or e-mail. This simply means that the same letter or e-mail goes to every individual. If you are using this format, consider a mail merge to make your communications more personal. Helpful hint: You can always personalize a form letter by adding a handwritten P.S. note.
- Personal letter or e-mail. This can be a much more effective approach than a form letter. A personal touch can make all the difference. By personalizing your message on an individual basis, you can emphasize particular aspects of the Society's mission and your participation in MS Rockstars that will appeal to your respective audience. Although this can be time consuming for long lists, the results are well worth it.
- Solicitation card. More simplified than a letter, a solicitation card provides an opportunity for a creative touch.
STEP 5: Suggest the level of pledges
- Amount. Let donors know the amount of contribution you would like for them to consider.
- Aim high. Don't underestimate donors' willingness to give.
The National MS Society is pleased to provide additional information or suggestions regarding any of the steps listed above. Do not hesitate to contact us if we can assist you.
FUNDRAISING TOOLS AND TIPS
Send an announcement of your plan to participate in the MS Rockstars training program to friends, business associates, church members, family and old acquaintances. Don't forget company, organization and school newsletters.
FUNDRAISING BY THE MILE
It's simple - sell each mile you will be running, either during the training or during the race or both! The training miles cost less, but are more frequent, and the race miles cost more, but are sold at a premium. Start selling miles to your donors today!
PUT THE "FUN" IN FUNDRAISING
Think Outside of the Box!
Sometimes asking flat out for a donation can be hard, but there are other ways to fundraise and have fun while doing it!
Make some space in your garage for your bicycle and have a garage sale. If you don't feel comfortable asking friends, family or neighbors for cash donations, ask them if they have any items laying around that they would like to contribute to your sale!
Have a 50/50 raffle, half of the proceeds will go to the winner and the other half will go towards your fundraising efforts. Many times the winner donates their half back to the cause!
Place it in a strategic position with a poster explaining that all the contributions will go towards your fundraising efforts.
Set up a table at your office displaying your used books and videos. Remember, one person's trash is another person's treasure!
Casual Days, Prime Parking or Days Off:
Ask management if you can sell reserved parking spots, a day off or a casual day to other employees. Some people will pay $5 just to wear jeans on Friday! Using an auction format may make more $$!
Have a Party!
You are an MS Rockstar, and rock stars like to party! This is the perfect excuse to get your friends and family together. There are many types of parties you can host to raise money towards your fundraising efforts.
- Wine Tasting Party
Ask local wineries to donate bottles of wine and charge your friends and family to come over for a tasting!
- Kick Off to Summer BBQ
Barbeques are a great way to celebrate summer and catch up with your loved ones. Host a pot luck barbeque in your backyard or a nearby park and charge your friends and family a fee to attend.
Host A Fundraising Night
Many local restaurants such as Baja Fresh and Pick Up Stix offer fundraising nights and will donate 15% of proceeds! Simply select a date and invite everyone you know to come and eat!
Ask Vendors at Your Places of Business!
Coffee, paper, delivery service, copier technician and everyone who wants to maintain that friendly "business relationship" are generally willing to make a pledge.
Save Your Spare Change Everyday!
You will be surprised how quickly this spare change adds up and makes a terrific pledge to yourself!
Learn As Much As You Can About MS, the Chapter and the National MS Society!
Visit the Chapter's web site for additional information ranging from MS research to Chapter & clinical programs and so much more!
Need more ideas? Click here
Have an idea to share with other Run MS runners? Click here or share it on our facebook page
SET UP YOUR PERSONAL WEBPAGE
Online fundraising is easy! Here are a few benefits of using your personal webpage:
- Customize your webpage to share your personal story of why you are participating -- even add a photo.
- Send a group email to all your friends, family & co-workers asking them to support you.
- Your donors can donate with a credit card or electronic check on our secure site. No more snail-mail hassle and waiting!
- Monitor your fundraising progress daily by seeing who has donated to you online.
- As a Team Captain, use your page to monitor your members and fundraising progress.
HOW TO RAISE $1,000 IN 10 DAYS!
- DAY 1 - Start by sponsoring yourself for $50
- DAY 2 - Ask 2 family members to sponsor you for $50
- DAY 3 - Ask 5 friends to each contribute $20
- DAY 4 - Ask 5 co-workers to each contribute $20
- DAY 5 - Ask 5 neighbors to each contribute $20
- DAY 6 - Ask 5 people from your place of worship/social club to each donate $10
- DAY 7 - Ask your boss for a company contribution of $100 (Also, find out if your company will match what you raise!)
- DAY 8 - Ask 3 businesses with which your company works to sponsor you for $100
- DAY 9 - Ask 4 businesses you frequent (your hair stylist, dry cleaner, veterinarian, restaurants, etc.) to contribute $25
- DAY 10 - Follow up with friends, family, businesses and co-workers you might have missed.
The staff at the Chapter has helped thousands of others and will help you reach your fundraising goal! If you are interested in a one-on-one fundraising plan please email RunMSDC@nmss.org or call (202) 296-5363, select option 2 today!