Tips for success

What projects are best suited for crowdfunding?

Causes best suited for a crowdfunding project are typically very specific in need (funding specific research, a study abroad trip, etc...), with a defined deadline, and goal. The fundraising cause should easily lend itself to online promotion--email and social media, primarily. Fundraisers should also have a clear idea of who they’re reaching out to for support of their campaign.

Crowdfunding timeframe

Crowdfunding projects that last 30 days or less are recommended, unless a longer-term strategy is in place.

Goal setting

When deciding on a goal amount for crowdfunding, fundraisers should consider:

  • The potential giving capacity of their audience
  • The number of people they plan to ask for support
  • The projected interest in their fundraising cause
  • The campaign timeline

Here are some general goal levels based on average outreach audience groups:

  • Family and friends only: $300-1,000
  • A larger group of supporters/alumni: Up to $10,000
  • A broader audience with a high capacity for giving, a strategy consult is recommended. Contact Robyn White at rwhite@umn.edu.

Grab attention

People donating to your campaign are often supporting you just as much as the cause you are raising money for, so share a compelling story, photos, or even a short video to let them know why the cause is important to you. The more well-rounded your page, the more you will raise.

Donate to your own project

It will be easier to donate to your cause if you set the example and make the first contribution. It sets the tone for your fundraiser, and people are more likely to jump on board when they see others donating too.

Spread the word

Tell everyone about your campaign! The most effective way to receive donations is to email your friends, family, and coworkers in small batches. Be proactive and send multiple emails creating a greater sense of urgency each time so people don’t forget about your campaign. In addition to email, share your page on social media, or add a link to your own personal website.

Here is an example of an email asking for support:

Subject line: Support [INSERT YOUR CAUSE]

Hi, family and friends.
I’m running in Goldy’s Run on the U of M campus in April. The race benefits the amazing U of M Masonic Children's Hospital, which provides a special level of care for kids not available elsewhere in the state.

As part of my race activities, I’m fundraising for the hospital--you can give through my page here: ADD YOUR CUSTOM LINK TO YOUR CROWDFUNDING PAGE.

I'd appreciate any support you can give! Thanks for supporting me in the run and such an important cause.
- U supporter

Provide updates

Campaign updates are super motivating and are a great way to remind people of your fundraising effort. Donors will be excited to see how their gifts are impacting your cause and will love being kept in the loop.

Thank your donors

Make sure to send along your gratitude as soon as possible. When you get an email alert that someone has made a gift, say thanks right away. When you thank a donor fast, they will feel appreciated and be more likely to give again. Make sure to let your donor know the impact they’re making, and if you can make their gift tangible, that’s even better! Ask donors to raise the bar and share a link to your fundraising page with their friends.

Enjoy it!

You’re doing a really incredible thing. Know that every dollar raised will help promote positive change at the University of Minnesota. You’re changing lives and futures. Have fun!

About crowdfunding

 

Questions about getting started or fundraising strategy?

Contact Robyn White at rwhite@umn.edu