Crowdsourcing is the new fad, well maybe not completely new, but certainly trending. The new twist on crowdsourcing is crowdfunding: the pitching of a project or idea by an organisation to the broader community of followers to raise money to complete the project. Essentially, if the community thinks the project is worthwhile, they will support it in the form of donations and the project will raise the funds and proceed, if not, it will tank.
The concept has seen some spectacular success from startups especially in the tech sector with millions of dollars raised (see the end of this article), but more recently, arts and community organisations have started relying on this innovative method of fundraising to get projects off the ground. Over the last few months I have had a front row seat in witnessing how this process works…
For those that know me, Diana, my wife is a successful performing musician and passionate educator, and for the past three years has been preparing to take a talented group of budding saxophonists from the Queensland Conservatorium of Music to the World Saxophone Congress in Scotland in July. These guys are good! An amazingly dedicated bunch who are working hard to showcase Australia’s musical talent at what, in layman’s terms, would be considered to be the ‘Olympic’ event for saxophonists from across the planet.
Unfortunately for them, they fall through the cracks of government arts grants and university funding, leaving them having to raise the money themselves through self-funding, performances and fundraising events – which is where Pozible comes in. About a month ago, Diana decided to put crowdfunding to the test and posted the fundraising request on Pozible.com.au to raise $10,000 to go towards accommodation and travel expenses for the fifteen musicians.
The response has been fantastic and well worth the effort – but they still have a way to go. They have passed the halfway mark (raising between $5-6K) and with two weeks to go are nervously on the home stretch. Why are they so nervous? Because Pozible only release the funds raised if they hit the target! Falling a few hundred dollars short will mean the pledged funds don’t get released to the group. You can donate here and experience crowdfunding first hand! Needless to say there have been a few sleepless nights in our house as the deadline approaches, but it has been great to see the broader community get behind these deserving ambassadors of Australian music: they are the only large ensemble representing our country. Donation is not without reward, with the students offering a range of rewards to match the donation, from dedication rights of the upcoming CD to personalized saxophone ring tones, lessons and live performances as some of the booty up for grabs.
Pozible are doing amazing things for arts projects across Australia (and expanding globally), raising over two million dollars over the past 5 months for a broad range of arts projects. There are some seriously talented people all looking for support on this site.
We would love you to donate to QLD Saxophone Orchestra’s project, your support will not go unrewarded – please click here to get on board.
For those businesses that have a ‘startup’ concept and are exploring crowdfunding as an option here are a few resources…
The amazing success story of Double Fine Adventure game crowd sourcing project:
This article explores the pros and cons of crowdfunding…
The 10 Secrets of Successful Crowdfunding Projects…
Photography: Chris Osborne
Jason Hawkins is a senior application strategist, information architect and director at KND. His knowledge is based on years of industry experience in taking online application ideas to reality across a broad range of industries.
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