The Benefits of Crowd Funding for Not for Profits

The Benefits of Crowd Funding

What NFP’s can learn from the revolutionary concept of Crowd Funding

Times are changing!  We now see the terms Crowd Funding and Crowd Sourcing popping up all over the Internet.  Crowd Funding (sometimes called crowd sourced capital, or street performer protocol) describes the collective cooperation, attention and trust by people who network and pool their money and other resources together, usually via the Internet to support efforts initiated by other people or organizations. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crowd_funding

As far as Crowd Sourcing goes, when putting a variety of definitions together, we get the picture.  Personally, I like CBS Jennifer Alsever ‘s definition, … “the basic idea is to tap into the collective intelligence of the public at large to complete business-related tasks that a company would normally either perform itself or outsource to a third-party provider. Yet free labor is only a narrow part of Crowd Sourcing’s  appeal. More importantly, it enables managers to expand the size of their talent pool while also gaining deeper insight into what customers really want.” 

Basically, Crowd Sourcing means to “use talents of the crowd”, and is a play on the word outsourcing. The origins of the word Crowd Sourcing are credited to Jeff Howe, a Wired Magazine writer who first brought Crowd Sourcing to people’s attention and vocabulary with his 2006 story, “The Rise of Crowd Sourcing”.  http://www.webopedia.com/TERM/C/Crowd Sourcing.html

Whatever term you want to use, you can’t get away from the fact that Social media is impacting fundraising.  In fact, Crowd-funding is changing the way not-for-profits and Associations operate today. Non-profits don’t need to lag behind the corporate world when it comes to IT  – so maybe NOW is the time to ‘take it to the Crowd!

Take a look at just a few of the online crowd funding websites you can take advantage of and raise the funds you need for your specific project.

  1. Profounder  ProFounder is a proud sponsor of the Hello Etsy Summit on Small Business and Sustainability. Profounder follows strict guidelines to legitimize Crowd Funding investments.  They offer a step-by-step fundraising system, to providing unique individual tools to assist entrepreneurs at all phases of their community funding journey, to holding events, to simply building awareness and community around this vision, we’ve evolved our products and will continue to do so to best meet entrepreneurs’ needs.
  2. Kickstarter.com is a popular crowd funding site. “Kickstarter is the world’s largest funding platform for creative projects. Every week, tens of thousands of amazing people pledge millions of dollars to projects from the worlds of music, film, art, technology, design, food, publishing and other creative fields.  On Kickstarter, a project must reach its funding goal before time runs out or no money changes hands. Why? It protects everyone involved. Creators aren’t expected to develop their project without necessary funds, and it allows anyone to test concepts without risk.
  3. BlueSwarm.com -  social fund raising for political campaigns.
  4. Apps.funder funds new mobile apps.
  5. Start Some Good  is a new platform for social good initiatives to raise funds and grow a community of supporters.
  6. IndieGoGo.com  one of the first crowd funding sites, launched in the beginning of 2008. IndieGoGo’s Slava Rubin notes a slew of competitors now-a-days .. “We just focus on maintaining an open platform, customer happiness and being global. We just want lots of happy customers all around the world.”

Just think, what if you could actually drive your cause through crowd sourcing and funding?  In citing just a few, clearly, Crowd Funding shines as the latest fundraising trend for nonprofits.  The question is how to get started.  Listed below are several Crowd Funding websites to get your non-profit on the road to success.  Why not take time to review these valuable aids and kickstart your non-profit in 2012!

This year, why not let your customers drive, direct, and finally directly fund your operations!

At Avectra we believe Crowd Funding can have huge implications for the future not for profits! Avectra delivers fundraising solutions for non for profits including A-Score™ and Moves Management. And coming soon, even AvectraLabs will have some new Crowd Funding concepts to share!

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