Is your school lacking in spirit? Are you the only one who wears school colors?
When you run a fundraising table at a school event, does 90% of the crowd pass by, pretending not to notice? Sometimes you feel like you’re invisible. Why don’t people care about supporting the school?
They probably do. The likely problem is they don’t want what you’re selling.
We’ve got an answer to both your spirit and your fundraising problems. What you need are some fun and useful school promotional items that students and parents actually want to buy.
With the items listed below, you’ll see more sales at the fundraising table and more students sporting school spirit items. Try these fun promotional items at your next fundraising event. Go, Fight, Win!
Preschool, Elementary and Middle School Promotional Items
Here are some very inexpensive fundraising ideas just for little ones.
What child doesn’t love face-painting? This is a fun and versatile way to raise funds and spirit for schools up to fifth grade.
If you can find an affordable or volunteer professional face-painter, they can paint children to look like the school mascot. If there is no one available with these skills, anyone can paint simple designs or words with school colors.
The best part about this is you can find face paint for cheap. That means you won’t have to charge more than a few cents per face to make a profit. It’s worth it for the kids and for you.
Encourage parents to take part with their kids. Offer to paint a simple, easily removable design for them as well.
Similarly, if you have affordable access to someone with professional balloon-twisting skills, you can sell school-branded balloon animals. Custom-printed balloons are cheap and easy to come by.
And not many people know this, but making balloon animals is actually very easy. Anyone with hands can learn how to make several different balloon animals in mere minutes on YouTube.
So all you have to do is learn the skills, buy some branded balloons and set up a booth at school events.
Here’s another very cheap option. Print out some temporary tattoos with your school mascot, logo, colors, spirit phrases, etc.
Then, set up a “Tattoo Parlor” booth at your next school event. Use a sponge and a bucket of water to apply them right at the booth. Again, these are very cheap so you’ll only need to charge a few cents for each one.
Try to print a big variety of tattoos. This will make kids want to purchase several at once.
You can also box them in packs of ten for kids to take home. You can include a cheap surprise in each box as an added incentive. Plastic party favor toys from the dollar store are great for this.
Scented Pencils And Markers
Children go nuts over scented pencils and markers. You can sell them for $1 each, and not just at school events.
Pick one day a week when kids can buy them from the school library. Periodically send home flyers reminding students (and parents) when to bring money to the school for these scented writing implements.
You can have them branded with your school name or logo. Or, if it’s cheaper, you can place school-branded stickers around them.
School Promotional Items For All Ages
Here are some great promotional items every student will love.
Everyday School Supplies
It’s important to have all the essential school supplies for sale in case anyone needs them. And if you brand them with your school name and colors, kids can show their spirit. These items should be available for purchase at your school every day:
- Pens and pencils
- Pencil sharpeners
- Large erasers
- Spiral and composition notebooks
- Binders and Folders
- Markers, highlighters, and crayons
Always have these branded items on-hand at your school store.
Backpacks and Lunchboxes
Backpacks and lunchboxes are another good “just in case” item to have on-hand. But they are also good for fundraisers at events.
This is especially true in elementary and middle schools. A child this age probably won’t buy their own backpack, even if theirs is falling apart. But their parents are likely to buy them a replacement while attending a school event.
On the other hand, high school and college students will be glad to have these school essentials available to them. Many college students live on campus and don’t own a car. It would be much easier for them to buy these on campus instead of traveling to the nearest store.
Just for Fun
Don’t be all work and no play with your promotional items. Get your school’s name on some fun things, too. Fidget spinners, slime, and silly putty can be branded for your school store.
You’d think these things would be mostly for elementary school students. But fidgeting toys like fidget spinners and silly putty also go over well with high school or even college students.
There are so many fun, gimmicky types of multifunction pens available for custom printing. And kids of all ages love them.
First, there are pens with toys on them, like light-up fidget spinners or bubble wands.
Then there are pens with fun characters or shapes on top. One of the most popular are the MopToppers with their funny face and wild hair. The Fidget Spinner Pens may be more popular among the college crowd.
Finally, there are novelty pens for function. There are some with multiple colors of ink and some that clip to your belt.
Some have flashlights or laser pointers. Some have radios and some can record audio or video. You can also get promotional pens with USB storage drives attached.
Mood pencils change color according to your mood like a mood ring. The bright, changing colors are eye-catching enough to gain anyone’s interest.
They’ll be very popular with your middle school students. But they’re intriguing enough to attract students of all ages, even college! You can find branded mood pencils right here.
Everyone loves carnival games, especially when it’s for a good cause! It’s easy enough to set up a simple balloon pop or ball toss game. Then you can offer small, medium and large branded carnival prizes like at a real carnival.
A plush version of your school mascot is a good starting prize. Large prizes can be branded basketballs or brightly-colored, fuzzy throw pillows.
Really, any of the most fun and age-appropriate items on this list would make a good prize. Alternatively, you can assemble your best items in a gift basket or branded tote bag and raffle it off.
To keep your school event lighthearted, make sure “everyone’s a winner” at your carnival games. That is, everyone gets to play until they win for the starting price.
High School Through College Promotional Items
Here are some fun and practical promotional items for older students.
These are the most popular promotional items there are among high school and college students. Below are a few of the best ones.
Branded USB Storage Drives
USB storage drives are something high school and college students need a lot of. You can have these custom-printed and sell them regularly at your school library.
And, as you might not be aware, there are a lot of fun variations of flash drives to choose from. Some are bound in wood or leather.
Some are flat and look like credit cards. And don’t forget about the flash drive pens!
Earbuds and Phone Chargers
These are must-have mobile essentials that are also notoriously easy to break. These always sell like hotcakes.
But if you’re smarter than the average fundraiser, you’ll stock up on more than one type of charger. The cheap chargers should be a staple at every high school or college fundraiser. But it’s a good idea to get some more heavy-duty chargers as well.
For one thing, this allows you to upsell. For another, a charger that charges fast and doesn’t break in a week will be much more appreciated than the cheap kind.
Portable Power Banks for Mobile Phones
These are even better than chargers. Power banks are external batteries you plug your phone or other devices into when there are no electrical outlets around.
College students are often on the go and they use their mobile devices a lot. They may not always be able to sit in one place long enough to get much of a charge.
Power banks are perfect for these students. When their device’s battery is low, they can plug it into the power bank and charge it in their backpack, wherever they are.
Branded T-Shirts for Fun Events
Any time you have a really cool, really fun event that students actually want to be at, you can sell event-specific, branded wearables as memoirs. First, figure out what your most popular events are. Then, instead of selling the same branded shirts you have at every event, sell some that are specific to these events.
Print out T-shirts, hoodies, hats, and wristbands specific to the homecoming game. Sell branded T-shirts around prom time that look like tuxedos.
If there are any students who directly benefit from the cause, get them involved. For example, if you’re fundraising for new football equipment, make sure the football team is helping out.
If there is a lack of fun events at your school, here are some cheap event ideas that are worthy of their own T-shirt. One winning strategy is to think of something the kids already want to do and invite them to do it together as a school event.
Host a video game tournament. Have students vote on what games to play, then bring the game console and games to the school. Sell event T-shirts to participants and spectators alike.
Invite the whole senior class to a Senior Movie Matinee. Prior to the event, sell themed school shirts related to the movie that they can wear to the event. By getting the T-shirt orders ahead of time, you can avoid ordering too many.
Partner with a local restaurant and see if they’ll host a spirit night with some of the proceeds going back to your school. Then offer restaurant night T-shirts that promote your school and the local business.
School-Colored Hair Color and Makeup
Is there a School Spirit Day coming up? Help your students prepare by selling branded face makeup and hair chalk. If you can’t find these items branded, print branded adhesive labels and apply them to the containers yourself.
Clear Drawstring Backpacks
These are a hit with high school and college kids. They’re as inexpensive as a standard, cheap backpack but cooler to look at.
The drawstring makes it easy to take out or put in your school stuff. And, being see-through makes it easier to find what you need with less digging around. But mostly, it’s just a cool-looking bag that people like.
Fundraising Outside the School
Here’s one final word of advice when selling promotional items for school. Don’t feel limited to selling these items at your school. There are many community events at which you can peddle your wares.
Get a booth or two at the county fair. Check out local conventions and farmer’s markets.
Any of the items on this list will work great for these. But the best ones for the county fair are souvenir T-shirts and carnival games. Face-painting, balloon animals, and the temporary tattoo booth are good, too.
At these events, you can sell branded souvenirs to the crowds and branded T-shirts for participants.
Boost School Spirit With These Promotional Items
There’s no such thing as too cool for school with these promotional items. If you want to see school spirit rise and fundraising succeed, give the students what they want.
These school promotional items are a fun and useful way for your students to get involved. Bring these ideas to your next PTO meeting and try them at the next school fundraiser.
Need more promo item ideas? We have plenty more where that came from! Check out our article about noiseless promo items for your next sporting event.