Raising lots of small sums from various parties is growing in popularity. No one is required to invest much, but together the sum raised can buy a specific item for your school. Crowdfunding has quickly become a great way to fundraise, and schools shouldn’t be left behind. Since you have a ready-made network of supporters and stakeholders, you are in a prime position to benefit.
How do you choose a project?
- It should have a community element – ie, something that your community can use.
- Explain how the project will work and outline what it will deliver.
- Set an achievable target, perhaps based on previous fundraising campaigns.
It is claimed that the average person has nearly 170 contacts on social media, so make your pitch in a way that will encourage your targets to share details.
When should you launch?
- Avoid exam times or holiday seasons.
- A one-month campaign achieves the best results, so find a suitable window in the school timetable of that length.
- Preplan a schedule leading up to the campaign itself.
- Budget for delayed payments if using methods such as Stripe, and for credit card deductions on payments.
Promoting your project
- What will make people want to share your campaign? How do you engage their interest? An eye-catching headline or short video can work well. According to The Crowdfunding Handbook, campaigns using videos achieve a 147 per cent return.
- Test the campaign to a select few for feedback, then tweak before sending out to your list.
- On your project page, you should outline how the money will spent so that potential donors feel they can trust you. In addition, indicate how you would spend surplus funds or – if the campaign is not successful – how you would spend the money you so raise.
Incentives to potential donors
- You could offer a variety of rewards as a thank you, from public acknowledgement to free tickets to a school event or – if a donation is very large – naming rights to the project.
Whatever the level of support, it is important to keep your donors informed of your progress as they may be willing to support future projects, too.