Is Crowdfunding Right

for Your Non-profit?

If you work with non-profits you may want to take a look at crowdfunding to determine whether or not it’s a good fit. This basic funding source idea has become a very popular way for organizations to raise funds from a variety of social media connections in a short period of time. The idea is to invite social media contacts to contribute to a particular cause or project. The more specific the focus the better. In the ideal world the contacts then share their participation AND your call to action with their contacts. And on it goes…. Until at last those $5-$25 dollar contributions add up to the desired goal.

Like all the things in this world, crowdfunding has advantages and disadvantages. The fast paced nature of social media means that the non-profit’s call to action could quickly spread. Along with being a way to raise monies, it will also raise awareness about the project. That’s a good thing, right?

  • It is if people respond favorably to the ‘cause’ that is being supported. That’s why it’s very important to be detailed when it comes to defining the project and presenting organization’s missions/goals.
  • It is if people don’t mind ‘donating’ via the internet. It’s always a good idea to provide old-fashioned methods of contributing (i.e. offline methods such as a check or a live person they can give their credit card number to.)

Remember that crowdfunding is about reaching the crowd in as many ways as possible so that they can participate in ways that are most appropriate for them. Make sure you offer choices. For example, those who cannot afford to give cash may be able to help spread the word to their contacts, etc.

In the end, then, you will have a project created with the efforts and good will of many people. That, in and of itself, is a win-win.

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