Monday, January 14, 2019

Should You Ever Teach Your Wine and Paint Classes for Free?

Teaching your wine and paint classes classes for a fundraising event can feel like you're being asked to give away your work for free.

Depending on how you set it up, you CAN give away your time for free, or you can use the experience as an opportunity to grow your business.

Just to clarify, a "Fundraiser" is an event hosted by a non-profit agency to help them raise money to support the work they do. The idea is that you, as the teacher, are helping the agency to raise money for their cause, by providing an activity for their event.

The goal is for the agency to make money and for you to help them make that money.

Here's one of the questions I recently received along with my thoughts on how I handle this request.

Q: "I've been asked about doing a fundraiser. I’m not opposed to that, but how would I go about it as far as figuring up cost and how much actually gets donated to the cause?"

A: Before you figure up the costs. think about WHY you might want to do a fundraiser and if it's a good fit for where you are in your business right now.

I'm all about giving back and volunteering, but there are many ways to give your time and/or money to help others. It doesn't have to be by giving away your services for free.

I personally like creating win-win situations for both you and the non-profit. Teaching at a non-profit event can help build your business in terms of gaining experience, expanding your connections and marketing your service. Here's what I mean:
  • You're just starting out and would like to get your name out there and make more connections
  • You're passionate about/involved with the cause and have a strong desire to give your time and services
  • You don't have much experience and you'd like an audience to practice with
  • You'd like to get photographs, testimonials and talk going about your class to help market it
  • You'd like to build your email list of students interested in your classes
  • You can build in your time to the cost of the class, so you're still getting paid while also helping others
Now that you're feeling good about why you'd like to do this, start by breaking down all of your costs. 

Be sure to include all of the materials you use in each class (plug your own numbers in here, these are just for example:)

Canvas @ $5.00 per person x 20 people=$100.00
Paint @ $30.00 for an event with 20 people=$30.00
Paper Plates $3.00
Paper Towels $3.00
Table Covers $8.00

Then you can add a charge for your time and overhead such as your liability insurance. Let's say you want to make $100.00 pay for the 4 hours you will spend with set-up, teaching and tear down and you add another $20 for your liability insurance.

Your grand total is now:
Materials: $144
Time: $100
Ins: $20
Total: $264.00

Once you know how much you need to cover your time and expenses, you now have choices of how you can present your class fees.

Example 1:
You can charge a per person rate that is a discount off of your typical rate:

If you typically charge $40.00 per person you can instead charge a discounted price of $20 per person.
The non-profit can then offer the class for $40 per person and they keep the difference of $20 per person.

In this scenario, you earn $400, covering your expenses and time and they get $400. Win-win.

Example 2:
Another option is to just buy all of the supplies for the class and have the non-profit reimburse you for the expense. Then you straight-up donate your time.

I give all of the left-over supplies to the non-profit, as they paid for it and it belongs to them. I use my brushes and easels and aprons and such, but all of the disposables, they buy.

In this example, you are 100% donating your time and have no material costs. You still gain the benefits in marketing and experience we talked about above and the non-profit gets to offer a great service to people and raise funds by charging whatever they want for the class.

Example 3:
You charge a flat fee for the event. If you know you're costs are $264, you can round that up to an even $300.00 flat fee for the event, for up to X number of people. The non-profit pays you this fee and charges as much as they want for participation in the event.

In this scenario, you get cover your costs+time and the non-profit is able to flexibly charge to meet their own fundraising goals.

So, there you have 3 different ways to structure a fundraising event, while also feeling good about it and doing some outreach and marketing for your business.

Happy Creating!

ps: I've gotten a little side tracked on the project I've been creating for you, but it's back in the front of my mind as we move into 2019 and I'm SUPER excited about it!

I'd love to hear from you about what you need help with as you explore teaching these types of social art making classes.
  • Would you like more lessons like these?
  • A FB group to share ideas with other creatives?
  • An Ultimate Guide to starting a wine and paint business? (or similar type of business?)
  • Learning about other types of social art making classes that aren't painting on canvas?
How can I best help you?

I'd be delighted if you would contact me and let me know. I read every one and will reply to any questions you have.

(Some people have started texting me? I'm not sure how that happened, but please reply by email only.)



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