CROWDFUNDING: THE BASICS

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Approximately 33% of all online donations made during the year are made in the month of December, according to the Network for Good. With the holidays just around the corner, consider how crowdfunding could help to make your events really count. New to crowdfunding? Read through some of the basics outlined below.

Crowdfunding Defined
Crowdfunding is a method of funding a project or venture by raising many small amounts of money from a large number of people, typically via the Internet. It is a form of fundraising that uses your network of friends, family and colleagues but often a wider circle than those to financially support a cause or business. In the simplest of terms, crowdfunding connects the “crowds” to individuals or organizations needing funding. With your audience as investors, crowdfunding makes ticket buyers a part of your event well before it begins.

Crowdfunding Broken Down 
A main reason why crowdfunding is so successful is because it makes donors feel like they are part of a project that inspires them. Services likeKickstarter and IndieGoGo are the most popular crowdfunding platforms, though not the only ones available. Others includeCrowdfunderRockethubCrowdrise and more. Research what best aligns with your needs and select the option that works for you. Each of these products essentially offers the same thing: an online platform that accepts donations, often with some level of reward for the investor. When a customer decides to donate to your cause, you can outline what they receive in return (for example, a limited-edition poster, t-shirt, bracelet, or VIP experience). The cooler the perk, the more likely someone will donate.

Tip: Don’t be afraid to set your base donation price low. $1 might seem small, but the key to crowdfunding is getting a large amount of people to donate small amounts of money. People may be more willing to give $1 than $100.

Crowdfunding with Events
A great way to enhance a crowdfunding campaign is to use events as part of the reward for donating. Examples of events that can help build buzz around your campaign would be a kick off party, mini-celebrations for meeting fundraising milestones, events that allow donors to be the first to sample and experience your project, and events to celebrate reaching your fundraising goal.

Crowdfunding with Video
The best way to get individuals to invest in your campaign or cause is to help them first invest emotionally, by showing them what makes it special. People engage with real individuals, aunthentic stories, and compelling visuals. A creative campaign video is the best way to communicate why your story is special. The average success rate of a campaign is about 50% with a video, dropping to 35% without (according to Envato Notes). Be unique and take the time to integrate video into your crowdfunding campaign. Crowdsourcing.Org walks you through how to make a great video for crowdfunding here.

Crowdfunding Timelines
When it comes to Crowdfunding, short campaigns are proven to work better. On average, a 20 to 30 day project has a 60% success rate. The success rate percentage begins to drop after 30 days. Shorter campaigns are also beneficial since you’ll get access to the funding quicker and you won’t need to spend months planning and tracking a campaign.

Crowdfunding with Friends
Promoting a crowdfunding campaign is basically the same as promoting an event. Build a small network of friends and family to help get the ball rolling on your campaign. Word of mouth is a powerful online marketing tool, and social media buzz is even more effective, especially when you invite your donors to tell their networks of friends. Your friends can be your best community advocates.

These are just the basics of Crowdfunding. If you’d like to talk about how to implement any of these ideas, discuss using our own fee-free donation tool, or simply need help with other event promotion ideas, give us a call at (800) 838-3006 (Option 5) or email Promo@BrownPaperTickets.com.

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