Crowdfunding FAQs

General

  • What is a crowdfunding?

    • Crowdfunding is a method of gaining capital through the collective effort of raising many small amounts of money from a large number of people. This approach taps into the shared efforts of friends, family, and supporters, primarily online through social media, email outreach, and crowdfunding platforms and by leveraging these networks for greater reach and exposure.

  • How do crowdfunding campaigns work?

    • A crowdfunding campaign taps into raising capital by inviting your network to support your cause. This is done by emailing, posting on social media and even in person discussions. The reason crowdfunding campaigns succeed is because of the short deadline that a 30 day campaign has. This instills in donors the need to donate now. Crowdfunding campaigns happen on a variety of websites, but ServiceYear.org uses the Network for Good platform for its campaigns. The innate benefit of this platform is all donations are tax deductible.  

  • Am I eligible to run a crowdfunding campaign with ServiceYear.org?

    • If you are a certified ServiceYear.org host organization, you are eligible to crowdfund.

  • What can I crowdfund for?

    • All campaign funds must be used to support a service year corps member. These funds can be used to support the living allowance, supplies for the term, or any other general costs that would need to be offset for the corps member.

  • I’m having technical trouble or don’t see an answer to my question- what should I do?

    • Please reach out to us at any point if you run into a problem! Email us at support-cf@serviceyearmail.org

  • What is the difference between grant writing and crowdfunding?

    • Crowdfunding helps fix a temporary or one-time immediate need where as grant writing typically helps fulfill a longer need that needs ongoing support

  • What is the time commitment of running a campaign?

    • Crowdfunding campaigns take a great deal of work in order to be successful, but this work can easily be split up with a team and spread over about 2 months. The biggest commitment of crowdfunding, and what most of your time will need to be dedicated to actually happens before the campaign launches. This means that if you need more time, or haven’t completed all of the steps of your campaign, you can push back your launch date, as long as you don’t have a near deadline for needing to be funded.  

  • What is the benefit of crowdfunding with ServiceYear.org? Can’t I do this on my own?


 

Campaigns

  • When will my campaign launch?

    • Its up to you and what works best in your organization's schedule! We recommend launching your campaign in the morning and during the middle of the week. Its also good to be mindful of where holidays fall during your campaign period! Your campaign won’t get as much attention if you launch on a major holiday!

  • What are the first things I need to do?

    • After building your campaign, the most important thing to do is start your video.

  • How do I get my campaign off to a good start?

    • To start your campaign off strong it is important to build donation momentum. The best way to start going about this is to reach out to core supporters to ask for a donation pledge before your campaign launches. Once the campaign does launch, it’s important to get these donations in during the first couple hours. Seeing these large donations, or a large number of small donations, early will encourage donors to donate also.

  • I’m in the middle of my campaign and donations have slowed, should I worry?

    • Don’t worry! This is a very normal, and even expected trend of a crowdfunding campaign. The biggest day you should expect to receive donations is on the first and last day of your campaign. These are the times that it is the easiest to get your audience excited and engaged with your campaign.

  • How often do I update my audience? What about donors?

    • The more you update your audience the better. Followers are much more likely to turn into donors if they see that the campaign is looking like it will be successful. The more momentum you build, the better off your campaign will be.

  • Is there anyway to share my campaign via social media?

    • Absolutely! You can copy the URL of your Network for Good campaign and include it in all digital outreach. Its recommended to always drop the link in bitly.com or https://goo.gl/ to shorten the link before posting it. This helps to save characters and make your postings look cleaner.

  • Who would donate to my campaign? How do I find them?

    • You should consider anyone who you know to be a possible donor. Family and Friends should be the first people each of your team member should target. The next population would be anyone who supports your cause: volunteers, anyone who is on your social media pages or email lists, and the third population would be the first two populations networks. Don’t be shy about asking your network to share your story and mission with their networks. This is how your campaign turns into a success and reaches a wider market.

  • Do I have to make a video?

  • My campaign launched, I get to sit back and watch the donations come pouring in, right?

    • Unfortunately, this isn’t true. While the heavy lifting comes before launch day, during the campaign period you have to be very active in being an advocate for your campaign and making sure that your project reaches the widest network possible. This can be done through social media and email and also encouraging your network to share your campaign to their own networks.

  • What should my financial goal be?

    • This goal is completely up to you. After identifying your need, determine if that is a realistic for you to raise in 30 days. Crowdfunding campaigns success rate increases when you have a very specific need and story. An example of this would be “We need to raise and additional $9,000 to be able to host a service year corps member for 12 months who will aid our students in working on a food assistance and nutrition program.” this story hold more of an impact on a donor rather than “we need to raise 25% of our total budget.” It’s also important to determine if you can raise that much money in 30 days. If your goal is $9,000 do you believe your network can support bringing in $300 a day? Setting your goal should be in the sweet spot between ideal and realistic. For your organization, it wouldn’t serve you much effort to do an entire campaign to raise just $250. You can set your goals slightly higher since Network for Good has a keep what you make model.

  • How am I able to retrieve my funds after my campaigns ends?

    • The funds will be transferred to you directly through Network for Good.

  • How long will my campaign run for?

    • Our crowdfunding campaigns will last roughly 30 days. A trend with campaigns is that you will receive the majority of your donations on the first and last day of your campaign, so lengthening your campaign won't aid you in anyway. In fact, longer campaigns tend to be less successful because there is urgency that potential supporters feel when they see that they only have a very short time to donate in.  

  • Does it cost money to set up or run a crowdfunding campaign?

    • There is no financial cost to set up or run a campaign, however there is a lot of time that will go into this process. Creating a team to manage the different aspects of a crowdfunding campaign will help take the added work load off of one person. Consider reaching out to interns or dedicated volunteers to assist in one time or ongoing tasks required for a crowdfunding campaign to be successful.  

  • Am I allowed to run multiple campaigns at the same time?

    • Its recommended to only run one campaigns at a time. This is due to the fact that publicizing one campaign is difficult, so successfully running two simultaneously would overall hurt your success rate. If this is still something you would be interested in, check out peer to peer campaigns. Peer campaigns could be a way to successfully go about running multiple campaigns.


 

Network for Good

  • What is Network for Good?

    • Network for Good is the platform that is used to host ServiceYear.org crowdfunding campaigns. This is the website that you will setup and run your campaign on. But always, if you have any questions, feel free to reach out to ServiceYear.org.

  • How do I set up a campaign on Network for Good?

  • What is a peer to peer fundraiser?

    • A peer to peer fundraiser would be a crowdfunding campaign that would be run underneath of your organization but it's run by a corps member who needs to crowdfund for some aspect of their service year.

  • If I have any questions with Network for Good, who do I ask?

  • If my campaign doesn’t reach my goal, do I still collect whatever money I raise?

    • Yes! Network for Good has a keep what you make model which means that any money that your organization raises you keep it, even if you are successfully funded.

Crowdfunding FAQs
Crowdfunding FAQs
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