How to crowd-fund your business

Earlier this week, I moderated a fascinating panel on “Outsourcing and Crowdsourcing”, the first seminar in the Let’s Talk Business series run by the City of Sydney. A subset of crowdsourcing is crowd-funding, which is an innovative way to fund new projects and business ideas. That inspired this week’s Enterprise post.

In the past, raising funds for a new business idea – or a new project with your existing business – meant racking up heaps of credit card debt, dipping into your mortgage or going to your bank or finance company to plead for money.

However there is now an alternative. By tapping into the power and financial backing of crowds, you can crowd-fund. This is where a group of individuals or organisations with a common interest pool their funds to help a project or business get funded. Usually this is done online through crowd-funding platforms such as Pozible and Kickstarter.

A global hub
It’s a trend that business futurist Ross Dawson spoke about earlier this week at seminar run by Let’s Talk Business on outsourcing and crowdsourcing. Dawson is also author of Getting Results from Crowds and believes that Australia is a global crowdsourcing hub. He says: “Crowds are the  future of everything including government, capitalism, and social innovation. One of the most important things is that it’s a massive trend and we need to know what to do today.”

You can read the full Enterprise article here.

About Valerie Khoo

Valerie Khoo is founder and national director of the Australian Writers' Centre, the country's leading centre for writing courses. She is a journalist, blogger and author. Her latest book is "Power Stories: The 8 stories you MUST tell to build an epic business" (Wiley). Valerie is a keynote speaker, small business commentator, and investor and mentor to startups and businesses in Australia.
  • Chris Peters

    After having successfully crowd funded two new products through kickstarter I am a big believer in the crowd funding model, however, the inherent risk and potential for fraud means that it needs to be handled carefully as all it would take is a few projects to go bad and the whole movement could come crashing down.

    • Anonymous

      Chris, you’re right. I hope that this model continues to thrive because – when done the right way – it’s such a great way to fund projects.