A Comparative Look at Kickstarter, Indiegogo and Razoo


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Buzzwords and catchphrases evolve when there is some cool opportunity for success. People get excited, and sometimes we realize that “easy” success actually only works in very specific circumstances. One of today’s buzzwords is crowdfunding.

First, some definitions. This isn’t crowdsourcing, which is another popular buzzword. Crowdsourcing is creating something by dispersing the task of creating it to many people. It’s possible to crowdsource writing a book, for example. However, when people fund the work of a single editor who turns that crowdsourced content into a coherent narrative, that is crowdfunding. Crowdfunding is not the same thing as fundraising for ongoing operating support. Building a base of small donors and trying to get large amounts of money is an important, ongoing operational goal, but that’s just fundraising. There may be some new tools to do it, but it is as old as the nonprofit sector itself.

The closest parallel to the 20th century nonprofit world would probably be the capital campaign. Here, nonprofits would make requests for large goals on a fixed timeline, often to buy a fixed asset like a building. The old-style capital campaign has taken a beating in the post-2007 economy, as the primary way this was done relied on large-scale donations from small numbers of well-off individuals and institutions. Many of these took large portfolio hits five years ago and aren’t recovered to the point where they will make big investments again.

In contrast, crowdfunding takes the small-donor base and adds the one-time effort emphasis for specific, defined purposes. This is only practical if the cost of reaching donors is practically nil (there are typically no in-person visits from the president with a $10 glossy for your capital campaign in crowdfunding), and if you can reach a lot of them. If your nonprofit is going to reach a large enough base, you’ll probably need to rent some infrastructure. The big players are Kickstarter, Indiegogo and Razoo.

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About Stephen G. Barr, Group Publisher

Author, Syndicated Columnist, Editor In-Chief and Group Publisher at SGB Media Group, a social media marketing firm specializing in digital media content production, publishing, affiliate marketing, public relations and advertising. Over 25 years experience in retailing, advertising, website & online forum development, niche social networking, affiliate marketing, search optimization, branding and identity, site location, non-profit fund raising. Event planning, promotion, production and MC/Host at public events. Author, Editor & Publisher of 35 syndicated, digital publications utilizing multiple digital distribution channels in conjunction with launching and administrating national advertising campaigns for major Fortune 500 advertisers in partnership with Google, Ning, Facebook, Myspace, Yahoo, DoubleClick, LinkShare, PepperJam and other industry leading third party affiliate networks. Product development team member from conception to launch on many websites, tangible goods and organizational structure for start ups. Specialties: Public relations, retailing, advertising, website & online forum development, niche social networking, blogging, email campaigns, affiliate/performance marketing, search optimization, branding and identity, site location, event production & promotion, non-profit fund raising and tasteful, responsible adult content publishing. An internationally recognized and read social media columnist & pundit on The Examiner, Associate Content, Vator.tv, X-Biz.net and Technorati and his own affiliated sites.
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One Response to A Comparative Look at Kickstarter, Indiegogo and Razoo

  1. Pingback: The Nice Ones on Kickstarter | Gabriel Napoleon

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