Need To Raise Money? Try Crowdfunding!
There are many reasons to run a crowdfunding campaign and, with the world today being an interconnected village, your chances for success are much higher. People have crowdfunded to get support for social causes, to fund startup businesses and creative projects, to get help with medical bills and school bills... the season finale of Empire introduced us to the concept of hosting a party to raise money for rent!
Whatever your need is, it is possible to go beyond our physical communities to find people who believe in the things we believe in and who are willing to fund us. To get started, you must have a clear purpose and know exactly who you are targeting for help. Creating the wording for your campaign is crucial to attracting the right people and keeping their attention on you. This is how we recommend you do it:
*Start with an enticing opening line. You can be funny, or serious, or sarcastic, just make sure it is compelling.
*State what your purpose is in short clear sentences. This is a short paragraph on your social cause, your business idea, a product or service you are developing etc.
*Get into your story. What is your vision? Where does this big dream come from? Why does it matter? It is important to speak(write) from the heart because we can all spot authenticity and it goes a long way.
*Define the world around you that creates a need for your cause or product or service. What is the context? Why is your cause/product/service relevant right now?
*Talk about how much you need. The more specific you can get about where the money goes, the better your chances are to connect directly with your audience.
*Tell everyone how to contribute. Being specific counts here as well. Tell them what amounts they can contribute in and what channels are available. Give options for non-monetary help such as sharing your campaign and introducing you to the right people.
*If your crowdfunding campaign is rewards based, talk about what your funders get for their contributions. Think creatively for what value you can offer for each level of contribution, lowest to highest.
P.S Feel free to add a video to go along with your written message and definitely include relevant images.
P.P.S Write as if you are talking to your friends and family, remember you are out to connect with your eventual audience.
Once you have created a message you are confident in, it is time to share it with the world. As much as you know exactly the kind of people who would be interested in your campaign, first place to start is your friends, family, colleagues and acquaintances list. Send a direct email to everyone you know personally. Cast this net wide as it forms a strong base of support to start with.
Then, get out into the digital sphere. Here are some options:
*Use available crowdfunding websites e.g. M-Changa, Generosity
*Publish on your personal blog/ website
*Publish on your own social media channels
*Find social media groups related to your topic and share within those
*Use local news platforms to expand your reach.
As you raise money, communicate frequently with your funders and other supporters about progress. Thank every contributor personally, preferrably privately. Keep any promises you made. When you do hit your goal, celebrate with everyone that stayed the course with you and share your success tips with the next person!
Kenyan Crowdfunding Stories
Sabrina Wanjiku, 19-year-old, Crowdfunded to Train for Winter Olympics
Enda: The First Kenyan Running Shoe
Attending Hive Global Leaders Program At Harvard University
African Crowdfunding Platforms
Crowdfunding Organisations for Agriculture
Legal Issues To Consider When Crowdfunding