Posted on Sunday July 31st 2016
Posted on Tuesday April 4th 2017
Edvinas Maciulevicius ran a Fund it project to raise money for his documentary film ‘Our Mental Health‘. He exceeded his target in the first week, and in this blog post, shares his insights into how he made it happen!
Edvinas and the team working on ‘Our Mental Health’
For our Fund it project we aimed to raise €1,500 to produce a documentary film on the mental health of young Irish people. We hit our goal within the first week and raised over €2,000 in total. Here’s a few things I learned from running a successful crowdfunding campaign.
Creating social media profiles for your project is a really effective way to build hype before the project even starts. To do this effectively, put out good content that’s relevant to your project, and bring value to people online. Use social media to build up an audience for your project and create a relationship with that audience before the campaign starts. You don’t want to be a stranger asking for a pledge when it goes live. You want your Funders to feel comfortable handing you money online and a reputable Facebook page can go a long way in helping them do so.
Continue the conversation when the project is up and running. I found that thanking people directly from your project’s social media page was a great way to reach a wider audience. Be sure to embed a link to your project every time you thank a Funder. This is a really effective way to reach friends of your pledgers’ who may not know about your project.
Put out weekly updates to keep the momentum going. Even after we had hit our goal, we informed our audience how the money that goes over the line would be put to increasing the production value of the film.
Don’t be fancy, be smart. Initially we tried to get cool rewards such as branded hoodies and wristbands but it was a waste of time. Not only was it expensive but it was also impractical and difficult to organise. I don’t think anyone really wanted materialistic rewards. Funders were more interested in saying “I took part” than in wearing an elastic bracelet.
Try to give back non-monetary value for your most popular reward – in fact for all rewards if possible! Analyse your project and figure out the different ways you can bring value to a Funder without it having to cost you a lot of time or money.
For the ‘Our Mental Health’ project we offered our Funders an invite to the film’s premier event, a digital copy of the film as well as a mention in the credits, all for a pledge of €20. This brought a lot of value to the Funder without it having to cost us a cent. Arranging a venue for the premier was quite easy and free – whereas the other potential rewards that we decided not to go with, would have taken a lot of time and effort to deliver. In our case the €20 reward proved to be the most popular.
If needed, bring in a third party organisation to help you provide an experience for your generous Funders. People who back your project with a large sum of money will have a genuine interest in you and your project, so why not invite them to a dinner and tell them all about who you are, what you do and where the idea for the project came from. With a bit of hustle, it could be possible to arrange for a restaurant to contribute towards or even donate a dinner in return for some publicity.
In a nutshell – find out what is special about the project that you’re doing, and what is the most cost effective way to give some of that “specialness” back to your Funders.
Edvinas sharing his pro-tips with Claire FitzGerald from the Fund it team, Project Creator Kevin Callaghan and Lia Boyland from Bank of Ireland at the Fund it Wednesday event in the Bank of Ireland Workbench Cork, 2017
Spikes in Pledges
The first and last week of the project received the most pledges. This seems to be the case for a lot of Fund it projects – it may be good to keep that in mind when planning your campaign strategy.
Be sure to “salt the tip jar”. Inform close friends and family about your project before it goes live and get some pledges from the get go. Projects tend to receive a lot of attention in their initial week. By having some money in the pot your project will look more appealing to someone who may know nothing about it. People are more willing to put money towards a project if there is money already there.
We received a lot of pledges in the last week of our campaign long after we had hit our €1,500 goal. It’s the perfect time to create a sense of urgency and get more Funders. Use social media to announce the project is coming close to an end. Induce a fear of missing out.
The biggest piece of advice that I’d give to anyone doing a crowdfunding campaign is to aim high! That’s the only thing that I would have done differently. We hit our goal within the first week, which not only slowed down our momentum in gaining more Funders but also killed off a little bit of our own motivation. Ego, time and effort all came into play when we set a “realistic” goal for ourselves. But looking back on it now it was more of a safety net. If we had stepped outside of our comfort zone and aimed to raise more, we would probably have a higher quality film today.
Posted on Wednesday March 29th 2017
We’re celebrating our sixth birthday! Over the last 6 years, Fund it has attracted €4.2million in pledges from 66,500 of you wonderful people, living in 66 different countries. Over 1,400 projects across every county in Ireland have been funded for performances, films, events and projects in music, science, art, fashion, publishing, tech and gaming since the site launched in March 2011.
Every year for our birthday, we commission a Fund it Project Creator to create a design which sums up what Fund it means to them, and to celebrate the amazing achievements of our Fund it Creators. This year, we collaborated with Aoife Challis from Print Block, who has designed a limited edition, hand-printed tote bag to reflect the individuality and creativity behind every Fund it idea.
Fund it 6th Birthday hand printed tote bag designed and printed by Aoife Challis of Print Block
Fund it is among the most successful reward-based crowdfunding websites globally, and is run by the charity Business to Arts who support creative partnerships between business and the arts in Ireland. When Project creators encourage pledges to their idea by offering rewards, and promoting them to their network, it not only enables Creators to attract financial support but it also allows them to build connections with new audiences and consumers. That’s where the magic really happens!
Mojo Creations and Kyle Lane are just two recent Fund it success stories. George Dempsey Flanagan ran his second Fund it campaign for another of his wonderful origami book and craft packs. Mojo Creations is going from strength to strength, and George received a €30,000 investment (100% of what he needed) on RTÉ’s Dragon’s Den this week! (26 March 2017)
Joanne Condon who runs Kyle Lane, a furniture ‘upcycling’ shop in Tipperary, used Fund it to publish a new book on DIY upcycling projects. Joanne found that Fund it gave her the confidence to think bigger, moving beyond the town of Clonmel, and has since featured in the Sunday Business Post, on RTÉ’s Nationwide programme, and in House and Home magazine and most recently, the Irish Examiner.
Just a couple more project highlights over Fund it’s 6th year include the pop-up establishment of Our Table, a café run and staffed by those exiting the Direct Provision system and the development of Free Feet Medical, a breakthrough in technology for sufferers of Parkinson’s disease.
We can’t wait to see what year 7 has in store, so get those incredible ideas in to Fund it today!!
Posted on Friday March 3rd 2017
We’re really excited about our first Fund it Wednesday event of 2017! We have two brilliant Project Creators joining us at Bank of Ireland Workbench, Cork on 29 March, to share their insights and pro tips (reserve your free tickets here!)
Edvinas Maciulevicius is making the documentary ‘Our Mental Health‘, and is an inspiration in how to make social media work for you in a positive way!
Ed and the team working on ‘Our Mental Health’
Ed: “The idea was to create a ‘Conor McGregor style’ promotional video – on mental health. I though it would be the only way to grab people’s attention on social media. And it worked! Creating a documentary film on mental health initially proved to be quite difficult. We knew that we needed to have some sort of credibility before we approached people. Although it’s more common now to talk about mental health, a year ago it still was a taboo subject and not everyone was willing to talk about their experience (just goes to show that already, Ireland has come a long way). So we decided to launch a Facebook page and it was flooded with people wanting to take part.
Four months down the line we had enough social media leverage to launch a Fund it campaign and raise a budget to create something that will hopefully change Ireland. Although our ambition is big our goal is actually quite realistic. We hope that this film will do two things – 1: encourage people to open up and talk about mental health; and 2: inspire people to be the listening ear to those that do. When you look at it in this simplified way, changing Ireland doesn’t seem so unrealistic. But we believe this small shift will have a snowball effect. And in the long run it will in fact change the course of mental health in Ireland.
‘Our Mental Health’ is due for release really soon!
Kevin Callaghan, sculptor
Our second speaker, Kevin Callaghan, some of you might remember from our Fund it Showcase last November. Kevin ran his Fund it project to raise money for a residency and solo show of is sculpture works at the National Sculpture Factory in Cork. He developed bespoke sculptures called ‘Condie‘ especially for his Fund it rewards, and they proved so popular, he has actually launched a separate enterprise selling the sculptures! Kevin has been working with the great team in Bank of Ireland Workbench, Cork on launching his new business (cond.ie coming soon).
Kevin Callaghan’s ‘condie’ sculptures installed in Bank of Ireland Workbench, Dublin for the Fund it Showcase last year
We can’t wait to see how Kevin’s career develops through his residency and new business. You’re not going to want to miss the opportunity to pick the brains of this successful artist and entrepreneur!
Sculpture by Kevin Callaghan; photograph copyright: Sylvain Deleu
We’re so excited to see what all your amazing ideas bring to the mix, so make sure you reserve your ticket!
Those details again:
Wednesday, 29 March
Bank of Ireland Workbench, Cork (map)
5.30pm – 7.30pm
See you there!
Posted on Tuesday February 7th 2017
Fund it Wednesdays are back for 2017!
We were thrilled with how many people joined us for Fund it Wednesdays around the country last year, and can’t wait for this year’s events.
How Crowdfunding Could Work for Your Startup or Idea:
Bank of Ireland are continuing to partner with Fund it to bring you crowdfunding sessions taking place throughout Ireland in 2017.
These interactive discussion sessions will aim to give you all you need to know about Crowdfunding as an alternative way to unlock funds for your startup or idea through engaging with your customers, fans or social media followers.
Fund it Wednesday in Bank of Ireland Workbench, Dublin last November
Andrew Hetherington, Chief Executive of fundit.ie will talk about crowdfunding, the benefits and pit-falls, and what you need to know about the domestic and international sites to make a decision on which one is best for you.
Successful Project Creators will be there to share their pro tips, and you’ll have the chance to workshop some of your own crowdfunding plans for your next project.
Come along and meet like-minded people over pizza and a beer and leave with the tools to make your dreams a reality!
All events are free, but places are limited, so be sure to reserve your ticket and tell your friends early! Bookmark this page to check back for ticket links and dates for later workshops.
Wed 26th July: Bank of Ireland Workbench, Galway (map).
September: Bank of Ireland Workbench, Limerick (map).
November: Bank of Ireland Workbench, Dublin (map).
See you there!
Posted on Sunday January 1st 2017
The Best of 2016 – Find out which projects are in the cool gang
Before we launch ourselves into 2017, let’s take a minute to see who was top notch and ones to watch in 2016. Trends we spotted across Fund it in 2016 were an increase in projects by Social Enterprises and Small Businesses; and the Music category is still the topping the charts.
5 projects with the most amount of money raised
1. Free Feet Medical *Social Enterprise
2. Seán Hurley 1916 Commemorative statue
3. Zeminar – A Life Changing Day *Social Enterprise
4. ZASKA Debut Album
5. Furniture Crush *Small Business
The Popular Kids
Blew Their Top
Will your project make the list in 2017? Get that first resolution ticked off and submit your project now!
Here’s to a mega New Year from the Fund it Team
Posted on Saturday November 5th 2016
– We wrapped up Fund it Wednesdays with a Creator Showcase
We have now finished the incredible journey of Fund it Wednesdays with Bank of Ireland for 2016. On 2 November, we returned to Bank of Ireland Workbench in Dublin for the last Fund it Wednesday, and to celebrate, we launched a Showcase of some of the creations made possible thanks to all of you, the Fund itcommunity!
Here are some photos we took to tell the story
A great turnout on the night – thanks to everyone for coming down.
Performance on the night by Patrick Freeman
We had a screening of the award-winning Breathe, directed by James Doherty
Thanks to all the Creators who took part in the Showcase, and we’ll see you for more Fund it Wednesdays with Bank of Ireland in 2017!
Posted on Thursday September 22nd 2016
Those of you familiar with funding projects on Fund it will notice a change to the process. Today we launched Hosted Payment Pages with Realex Payments. While Fund it has always been fully secure, we are keeping up with the most up-to-date security measures, and remaining fully PCI compliant.
The changes you will see:
1. As part of the change over, we took the opportunity to make the Fund it Button clearer. It now shows as a black ‘fund this project‘ button.
2. You will now be taken to a secure Hosted Payment Page in order to enter your card details, which will be processed by Realex Payments – an Irish company and world-leader in online payment security.
Your payment will still only be processed if and when the project finishes it’s fundraising successfully, and reaches its target.
3. When your pledge is complete, you will now see projects recommended for you so you can find other amazing creative projects to get involved in!
The Fund it Team!
Posted on Thursday September 22nd 2016
The design and ease of use of Fund it has always been at the centre of what we do. We tried to make sure Funding a Project would be as easy as pie, but, hey, things can always be easier! So that’s why we’ve made this step-by-step guide to walk you through the process.
1. Creating a Fund it account
Like all websites which take payments, we must capture some basic information to ensure your security, and so Project Creators can deliver your Rewards. If you’re new to Fund it, click the ‘sign up’ link in the top right-hand corner of the page, as you must be logged in to fund a Project.
You can choose whether you want to receive the Fund it newsletter, then you must agree to Fund it T&Cs and click ‘create my account’.
2. Finding the Project you want to fund
Use the ‘browse projects’ button at the top of any page to find a project you like.
3. Start funding
Once you’ve found the Project you want, you can fund it right away by clicking the ‘fund:it’ button under the image…
Or if you want to see all the details, click ‘read more’ and go to the Project page.
Once on the Project page, just click the green ‘fund:it’ button on the left panel under the image or video.
4. Choose your Reward
To choose a reward, just click the button beside the amount you want to pledge…
Of if you’d rather pledge a different amount, enter the amount in the ‘define your own amount’ field
If you want to support but don’t want a Reward in return, just tick the box.
You can choose whether to make your pledge public or anonymous, then tick the box to accept Fund it Terms & Conditions.
Click ‘fund this project again’.
5. Confirming your pledge
This page will show a summary of the pledge you are about to make. Click ‘fund this project’ to proceed, or click the ‘edit’ button to make a change.
6. Enter your credit/debit card details
Enter your card details on the secure Hosted Payment Page processed by Realex Payments, and click ‘fund this project’ again.
6. Pledge complete – browse for other projects
Congratulations! Your pledge is now complete. Check out the other projects recommended for you!
Posted on Tuesday August 16th 2016