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How to raise $16 million from crowdfunding in one day

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Forbes  |   Devin Thorpe, Contributor  3/13/2013 @ 5:35PM

razoo - How to raise $16 million from crowdfunding in one day

Minnesota’s GiveMN raised $16.3 million in one day using crowdfunding site Razoo in November of 2012. In what has become a major annual event in the nonprofit community in Minnesota, 4,381 nonprofits participated, raising money from 53,339 people on “Give to the Max Day.”

The Community Foundation of Utah (with whom I volunteer) is sponsoring and organizing the Love UT Give UT campaign which will happen on March 22, 2013 with hopes of raising over $1 million for nearly 400 participating nonprofits.

Fraser Nelson, Executive Director of the Community Foundation of Utah notes that Utah is a unique state, saying, “We are the most charitable state in the nation, by far. Utahns give on average 10.6% of their income to charity and are consistently #1 in hours of volunteer service. While much of those funds go to faith organizations, it creates a culture of giving. We are the youngest state, among the most ‘wired’, and are heavy users of social media.”

Utah’s Nelson adds, “In all these ways Love UT Give UT makes particular sense for Utah. It is easy, it is high tech, and it is in line with our values of giving back while recognizing our increasing diversity. I know we’ll see that in full force on March 22.”

Razoo exclusively serves nonprofits in their online fundraising efforts and has helped them raise approximately $139 million. Razoo has hosted many of these community-wide fund raising days. Minnesota presently holds the record, but the Dallas, Texas community is not far behind.

Razoo CEO Lesley Mansford offers the following tips for successful community led fundraising campaigns:

1)      Incentivize the behavior you want to see, both the behavior of donors and of nonprofits; encourage creativity.

2)      Use effective partnerships: leverage media, nonprofit groups, and local PR firms to amplify the message of the day and rally their networks to collective action.

3)      Train your nonprofits:  teach them how to use social media, help them cultivate long-term relationships with donors; show them how they can tell the story of the work they do. The more prepared and confident your nonprofits are, the better the giving experience will be, and the more donors will enjoy giving and so do it more often.”

Dana Nelson (no relation to her Utah counterpart), the Executive Director of GiveMN, the person primarily responsible for the world record for single-day fundraising offers these tips for success:

1)      Matching grants: With Razoo it is easy to add to the page and easy for donors to find nonprofits with matching grants so their money can be leveraged. It is vitally important for nonprofits to go out and find their own matching grants.

2)      Be creative:  Nonprofits must engage in competition, find ways to stand out by doing fun things. As an example of this creativity, we have a local arts organization that live streamed 24 hours of improv, another allowed donors to write a line in a play that was later performed.

3)      Spread the word: Each organization must reach out to boards, employees, fans, followers and supporters to spread the link both in advance and on the day.

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share save 171 16 - How to raise $16 million from crowdfunding in one day

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