Following our crowdfunding theme, we’re pleased to welcome Jess Ratty, brand communications manager at the UK’s largest reward-based crowdfunding platform, Crowdfunder, to tell us more about crowdfunding for social enterprises.
What is crowdfunding?
Crowdfunding helps individuals, businesses, social enterprises, community groups and many more, raise the funds and awareness they need to make their great idea a reality.
If you have a great idea/project that you need to raise money for, then you can add it to Crowdfunder and get started on building a brilliant campaign so that everyone can hear about it and support it.
Since 2012, reward-based crowdfunding has been one of the fastest growing forms of alternative finance in the UK. And in 2014 alone, more than £26 million was pledged to breathe life into thousands of crowdfunding projects across the UK.
How does it work?
With “rewards-based” crowdfunding, it does what it says on the tin. People pledge money in return for a “reward” from your crowdfunding project.
Rewards vary from project to project – and can be as little as a shout out on social media for £5, right up to a big celebrity experience for thousands of pounds. Our 95 Tips for Crowdfunders from Crowdfunders has a great section on how to create great rewards for your project.
Will rewards-based crowdfunding work for your social enterprise?
Well, that’s a good question that you need to ask yourself. There are some key aspects that you’ll need to consider before launching a crowdfunding project for your social enterprise.
– What’s your great idea? You’ll need a clear idea of what you want to fund, great messaging to communicate your idea, a fundraising target and a time frame in which to meet it.
– Do you have a great network of people that will support you and your project? Do you have a great social media network, a good email list, businesses and supporters that you can rely on to help you spread the word about your fundraising campaign?
– Have you got a great team to help you out? Getting a group of people involved and having individual roles and responsibilities not only spreads the load, it also increases the reach of the project exponentially.
– Have you got “rewards” to offer? Your rewards can make or break your crowdfunding project. You’ll want them to be open to everyone so that as many people as possible have the opportunity to pledge and support your great idea.
What else is on offer for social enterprises looking at setting up a crowdfunding campaign?
Crowdfunding is about more than just raising funds. It’s about getting validation for your idea, creating brand awareness, growing your audience and making the most of the brilliant opportunities that arise while your campaign is running.
Many organisations use their successful crowdfunding projects as a platform from which to apply for match funding and grant funding. By showing that the public support and want your idea to become a reality – you then have the “validation of the crowd” to show funding bodies in the future.
For more top tips on how to launch a successful crowdfunding campaign, check out our 95 Tips for Crowdfunders from Crowdfunders. Jam-packed with top tips on what makes a great crowdfunding target, how to create brilliant rewards, producing videos and how to use social media – including many more sections about the crowdfunding journey. The download is helpful for all kinds of crowdfunding – including social enterprises! Get your copy now!
Ready to get started? You can add a crowdfunding project today.