Drink for Pink operates on three key values: research, local, and transparency. Our mission is to support critical breast cancer research local to the Colorado area in a transparent way.
Part of that transparency is letting you know exactly how much we raised in a given year and where it’s going. We did our first transparency report in 2015, and we’re excited to do it again this year!
I’ll start by just saying that 2016 was truly an amazing year. Although we fell short of our goal of hitting $10,000, we nearly doubled our donation from last year, partnered with some new breweries, and had 10 total events throughout the year! We can’t thank you enough for your support.
Looking forward, we’re setting some ambitious targets for this year. We think we can double our donation from this year and get close to that $25,000 mark we’re looking for to fully fund our own seed grant.
Like last year, this is divided into four sections:
What went well…
We nearly doubled our donation from last year. This was huge! We had our sights set high on hitting $10,000. While we fell a bit short (donating $8,000), this still represents nearly double what we donated from 2015. That’s a big jump! We’re certainly thankful for everyone that helped us reach that number this year.
We tried out some new events. This year, we added a few new events to the schedule including a Brewery Bootcamp event at Dry Dock and a CrossFit workout at CrossFit Undeniable. We also partnered with Factotum to brew our own beer to have on tap throughout the month and had a beer/food pairing at Lone Tree. We’re going to continue to add fun events throughout 2017.
We welcomed some new breweries into the fold. Dry Dock is a huge name in the brewery world even if you live outside of Colorado. We were super excited to partner with them this year as well as Rails End, a new brewery just north of Denver that’s making some amazing beer. In 2017, we’re hoping to bring on 10-12 more breweries.
What could’ve gone better…
We could have been more active on social media. There’s a huge opportunity to use social media to share our mission and drive traffic to our events. In 2016, we were still a bit sporadic with blog posts and even more scattered with our direct social media posts. As we look to bring on more breweries in 2017, we’re going to double down on social media with unique campaigns to drive traffic to our events.
We need to formalize our board and structure. Drink for Pink has always been a grassroots effort. From getting a 501(c)3 to budgeting to board meetings, we’ve always learned by doing. In 2017, we’re beginning to apply for various funding grants, which means we need do really nail our organizational foundation.
What we’re focusing on…
Getting more breweries on board and delivering value. This is the ultimate goal right? We really want to expand to more breweries across the state. We think we now have the processes in place to handle 20 or so breweries throughout the month of October. We’re starting early this year reaching out to our favorite breweries and asking them to jump onboard. Have someone you want us to reach out to? Let us know!
Nailing our major events. In the past, we’ve done 7-8 events during the month of October and a few other events throughout the year. This year, we’re going to really focus on nailing four major events including a 24 hour workout, outdoor block party of sorts, and a food/beer pairing. Rather than having separate events in October, we’re going to invite breweries to contribute throughout the entire month.
Formalize our nonprofit structure. Meeting minutes, board member responsibilities, etc—all things we need to finalize. This will ultimately set us up better for success in the future.
T-Shirt sales (not including those sold at events)—$121.80
Our biggest events (donation-wise) were the Brewery Bootcamp event at Dry Dock ($2,733.51 in total donations) and the Helen Meets Grace workout at CrossFit Undeniable ($1,446.23).
These numbers don’t look great at face value. In particular, the event expenses number should set off some alarms. $5,000 is a lot to spend on events.
The entire event expenses category was actually the result of our partnership with Peak Beverage here in Colorado. We partnered with Peak at the start of 2016. They ran events once a month at various Skate City locations always sponsored by a charity (Drink for Pink in this case). We pay the full cost of staffing the bar at the event (liquor, staff, etc). They donate the total proceeds from the event in return. In some cases, we made several hundred dollars in donations from the event, which is awesome (we averaged $100 for these events).
On the flip side, these partnerships have a pretty huge impact on our numbers. Right now, it looks like we’re spending roughly $0.50 for every $1 we bring in on event expenses—certainly not ideal. If you factor out these expenses we’re spending $0.14 of every $1 we bring in. In addition, these events give us little chance to own the Drink for Pink brand. As a result, we’ll be discontinuing the partnership in 2017.
If you’re curious about the Business expense category ($534.48), this included our 501(c)3 application ($400.00).
Total donation to breast cancer research: $8,000
After 2015, we donated a total of $4,471.54 so we came close to doubling our efforts! We left $99.60 in our account at the end of the year to help kickstart 2017 (pay for business filings). We’ll be presenting the check to Cancer League of Colorado at their March 2017 meeting. The funds will then be awarded through their grant application program.
2016 was all about taking the lessons from year one and legitimizing Drink for Pink. We accomplished the latter by getting our 501(c)3. We also offered different types of events which helped bring larger crowds and raise more money. We solidified what Drink for Pink stands for in our three tenets (local, research, transparency). We also learned how hard it is to keep operating costs down while at the same time expanding into marketing swag like t-shirts (which did very well). We grew our relationship with Cancer League and couldn’t be happier about it. We learned the importance of a board and hope to keep growing in the right direction in 2017.