What is crowd-sourced fundraising?
Crowd-sourced fundraising allows an individual or group to raise funds online. There are many different user-friendly websites that build your page for you for free or a very small fee. Crowd-sourced fundraising is beneficial because small funding requests can be sent quickly to large groups of people via email and social media sites, resulting in a large group of people seeing your message in a short period of time.
Is crowd-sourced fundraising right for me?
Do you have daily access to a computer/smart phone? Are you comfortable uploading pictures and editing documents? Do you have a group of contacts – friends, family, acquaintances –that you connect with regularly via email, Facebook or Twitter ? Or, do you have a close friend or family member that can help you do these tasks? If the answer is ‘no’ to most of the questions above, this might not be the right tool for you. However, you don’t have to be a computer expert, and anyone willing to try and learn can succeed!
Tips for developing a crowd-sourced fundraising page:
- Research websites completely before creating your page. Read all of the rules and check out reviews by other users.
- Make sure to factor in the percentages taken by the company and any possible tax ramifications of this gift.
- Study the most successful fundraisers to shape your story and your profile/ask.
- Develop a clear and brief statement about what you are trying to fund and why.
- Use high quality, relevant photos that evoke empathy but are not too depressing.
- Make sure to send your ask to all of your contacts and ask them to send it on to all of their contacts with a message. Offer them a sample email, post, and encourage them to write their own.
- Give updates and gratitude throughout your fundraiser – change up your message each time.
- Be quick to respond to any and all questions, comments and donations.
- Have all of your documents scanned and saved in case they are requested by anyone. For example, the insurance letter denying your power wheelchair, etc.
- Be sure to personally call/email to thank all the donors.
- If donations are not coming, try making a suggested $5-10 donation.
Some popular crowd-sourced fundraising sites include:
Warning: Before you give money or your information to anyone online, make sure to research them first. The risk of scams could be high, and there is no protection available for the donors. Only give to a cause that you know or firmly believe is accurate and truthful.
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