Crowdfunding Goes Local

When Jay Ducote, a husky Louisiana food blogger, entrepreneur and radio personality, received a $1,000 grant last May from local microfunding venture225 Fund, he knew already what he was going to spend it on: extra hard drives.

Ducote, a 2011 MasterChef competitor, had been creating an Internet TV series about his quest to become healthier while still making a living as a food and drink writer, and he had run into a problem. The high-definition digital footage his filmmaker was shooting took up a huge amount of hard-drive space. The money from 225 Fund allowed him to buy the extra space he needed.

“225 Fund is basically a group of 10 guys who believe in doing charitable things for our community, which is Baton Rouge, Louisiana,” says Tommy Talley, the videographer for Ducote’s show, who later became a member of the fund as his way of helping the businesses in his hometown. “Ten of us donate $100 a month and we hand it to them as $1,000 cash and walk away.”

The microfunding venture gives out one no-strings-attached grant nearly every month. “It’s young entrepreneurs putting money directly in the hands of go-getting entrepreneurs,” Talley explains. “No piles of paper, no jumping through a bunch of hoops.”

Ducote isn’t the only one benefiting from local investment. Around the world, grassroots microfunding ventures are springing up to support entrepreneurs and creative people in their communities. Whereas crowdfunding platforms such as Kickstarter and Indiegogo accept almost any kind of campaign and permit donations from all over the world, microfunding operations deal with smaller amounts of money and seek to have a more local impact.

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Yesterday’s Crowdfunding Seminar By CJ Cornell of Propel Arizona at SMAZ6

At yesterday’s Social Media Arizona #smaz there were many speakers covering different social media related topics and the one that interested me the most was the Crowdfunding seminar presented by CJ Cornell of Propel Arizona

CJ Cornell is an ASU Professor and the founder of Propel Arizona.

In a nutshell, Propel Arizona is a Crowdfunding platform for Arizona Entrepreneurs.

But it’s much more than funding, Propel Arizona is a way to get all of Arizona involved with innovation, and helping to build the next Google, Apple or Facebook.

Propel Arizona is a broad initiative designed to help drive economic growth in the state of Arizona by providing an environment where people can support and help the entrepreneurial ventures, innovative ideas, projects and the entrepreneurs that build them.

Online, Propel Arizona allows entrepreneurs with projects or ideas that one day may be wildly successful, to engage with the community and enlist their support – financial support and other kinds of important support.

Specifically, Propel Arizona is about “Crowdfunding” entrepreneurs and innovative projects that have the potential to become wildly successful – perhaps in the Facebook-Google-Amazon kind of way that generates jobs, wealth and inspires even more entrepreneurs and new ventures.

Members of the Arizona community can get involved with the excitment of the entrepreneurial startup – from concept to product to market – and become early funders of promising projects.  In the end, helping these potentially high-growth entrepreneurial projects become successful, will help contribute to the overall economic growth and prosperity of all Arizona.  Every Propel Arizona member gets to fill out their own profile page (1), can add projects needing funding and post a blog post promoting their projects.

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Peter Shankman will be the opening keynote speaker for the Crowdfunding Bootcamp

Peter Shankman will be the opening keynote speaker for theCrowdfunding Bootcamp October 9, 2012 at the Ravella in Las Vegas, NV.

Peter Shankman is an entrepreneur, author, speaker, worldwide connector and small business evangelist. Peter is best known for founding Help A Reporter Out, (HARO) which in under a year became the de-facto standard for  journalists looking for sources on deadline, offering them sources around the world looking to be quoted in the media. HARO is currently the largest free source repository in the world.

He is also recognized worldwide for initiating new ways of thinking about social media, PR, marketing, advertising, creativity and customer service. To launch an effective Crowdfunding campaign, you must start with a clear message that can be used to attract potential investors.  Who better to teach this vital principal than Peter Shankman, the master of “Networking through Social Media.”

Read more here.