Unless you’ve been living as a social media hermit, you won’t have missed the new fundraising phenomenon that is crowdfunding; ordinary people with small businesses and projects getting the funding they need from the public, usually via donations on a website. In return, investors might receive equity, a sample of the finished product or something else exciting.
Crowdfunding is beneficial for both the funders and the fundraisers. Fundraisers get a chance to engage with the public and promote their product in a community driven environment and people who wouldn’t usually be ‘investors’ can put in often as little as £10 and still reap the rewards, while supporting small businesses that may not be able to get funding elsewhere.
This simple method of funding has taken off all over the internet in recent years, with everything from charity runs to films being funded by the people who want to support them. If you fancy pledging to a crowdfunded project, you might be wondering where to start. This is where I come in. I’ve got two favourites at the moment, so take a look at these cool projects and get involved!
Go Wild nature kits
A couple of weeks ago Belle and I went to the launch of this project in Bristol and spent a really lovely evening around a camp fire, toasting marshmallows, drinking hot chocolate, hunting for animal tracks and listening for bats. It was awesome.
Jackie, founder of Go Wild, is raising money to produce Go Wild nature kits. These brilliant kits for children teach them to hunt for bugs, climb trees and other exciting nature related activities. The great thing about these kits is that parents don’t need to know anything about nature or the activities, (lucky for me), as the kits are designed to inspire parents and children alike to get out and about and just be creative in nature.
This project will only be funded if at least £20,000 is pledged by Tuesday 3rd June and the incentives are pretty cool. We pledged £125 and if the funding hits its target then in return for our pledge Belle will get a place on one of Jackie’s fab summer schools. (No money is taken from you until the target is met.)
The first 100 backers will also be entered into a prize draw to win Sunday lunch for two people courtesy of our lovely friends at Yurt Lush in Bristol. Yum!
Make your pledge to Go Wild here http://www.crowdfunder.co.uk/gowild/.
MyHigh.st – shopping locally made simple
Another great crowdfund happening right now is for MyHigh.st, an eCommerce business for independent retailers in the UK, and the towns and communities they operate in, aiming to address the challenges faced by independent retailers in going, and trading, online.
Its bespoke platform provides retailers with an online store, groups them into online town showcases each hosted on its own URL, and feeds all stores and products into a new, national, independent retail marketplace hosted at www.myhigh.st.
MyHigh.st want to raise £270,000 for 10% equity, and you can invest at http://www.crowdcube.com/investors/myhigh-15363.
Have you ever invested in a crowdfunded project? Do you have any favourite projects looking for funding right now?