PMA Consulting, LLC

Coupon Sites for Fundraising

Raising money is an ever-changing machine that can adapt to society and what seems to be working in other sectors. It is no surprise then, that charities are looking to the “Groupon” model for success.

For those not familiar with Groupon, the concept begins with a business offering a product or service to the public through the Groupon website at a significantly discounted price (50-90% off). The popularity of sites like Groupon and the similar Living Social has grown rapidly and sites have followed targeting nonprofits and organizations in an effort to fundraise.

Some concerns to think about before exploring the coupon model:

  1. How much money is really going to an organization?
    Read the small print. If a company says they will give a nonprofit 4 percent, find out if that means 4 percent of the coupon value, or 4 percent of the company’s share.
  2. Make sure products aren’t a cultural mismatch with the misson of the organization.
    We don’t think any nonprofit wants to receive money from a product of questionable taste and put them in an ethical dilemma with other donors.
  3. Will our organization be at risk of over-commercializing a cause?
    Care should be taken and err on the side of caution. No nonprofit wants to be cast in a bad light or be known as the organization with their hands always out.

Below is a list of some of the most popular coupon sites:

Living Social
The Blind Squirrel
Deals for Deeds