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The Benefits Of Crowdfunding

The Benefits Of Crowdfunding

Having a great idea but not having the ability or opportunity to bring it to fruition can be frustrating. It can be difficult to get funds or find investors who believe in your idea or vision enough to bank on you and invest in it. This is one of the reasons crowdfunding is changing the way people get their projects and businesses funded. From education to technology and even solar energy, a lot of projects have gotten their start thanks to crowdfunding sites. These are sites that help get projects funded with the help of the masses.

If you have a new business or project, crowdfunding is one of the best ways for you to get the funds you need from well-meaning people who connect with the project’s story and are willing to help. There are lots of crowdfunding sites out there, and each specializes in different aspects of crowdfunding. Choose a site that meshes well with your idea and interests.

Although the main goal of a crowdfunding campaign is gaining funding, it can also serve as a medium to validate your business, gain interested customers, and generate ideas. Through a successful crowdfunding campaign, you can find lots of people who are interested in your project and also convince new people to become interested. This builds a fan and customer base of people who will follow your project as it progresses.

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Here are four benefits of crowdfunding.

It’s an efficient way to raise funds.

At this early stage of your business or project, you are faced with the difficulty of attracting seed capital, and you don’t mind exploring all the funding options available to you.

When you weigh your options, you may find that it is potentially more effective and efficient to start a crowdfunding campaign rather than pursuing other funding routes. For example, the procedure for applying for loans may be cumbersome, and then you would need to await approvals that you might not even get. The interest rates and terms of the loan if it is approved are also a major consideration. Seeking out investors and pitching your idea to them is a huge undertaking. By setting up a successful crowdfunding campaign on GoFundMe or alternative platforms, you will be able to find and get your message out to people who are actually interested in your project. With the right platform for your project, you can tell the story of your business and enjoy the benefit of having potential funders find you. It’s more efficient than traditional fundraising.

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    It helps build interest, community spirit, and a customer base

    A good crowdfunding campaign can enhance your visibility, validation, and trust. When your campaign is discovered and funded by interested people, it enhances interest and trust in your project, as other persons are likely to buy into your idea too. This demonstrates that potential customers believe in your idea or vision, and that’s a good thing.

    It helps you gain loyal advocates

    A crowdfunding campaign helps you gain potential brand advocates and early adopters. These are the (early) people who believe in your idea, project or story enough to take a chance and fund it. They share in your vision and could even help share your story on social networks to promote your project.

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    Opportunity for critique, scrutiny, and idea refinement

    It also gives your ideas the opportunity to be scrutinized and vetted by would-be backers. One of the major interests of most startups is to identify important and unattended needs that customers have and do something about it. Thus, it is important to seize any opportunity for customer feedback by taking every criticism and suggestion in stride, then evaluating the feedback for relevance when developing your startup.

    Crowdfunding campaigns help you get close to potential customers and give you the opportunity to answer questions, hear complaints, get feedback, and consider ideas from potential customers. This could even be where you get your next great idea!

    In fact, crowdfunding brings with it many benefits, and it’s now a great way for people and startups to find capital, gain support, validate their business, and get exposure. Crowdfunding has made a lot of good things possible: it has helped unleash people’s creativity, saved lives by helping fund medical treatments for lots of people, and helped startups and projects get off to a good start.

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    Featured photo credit: Aurelie Coulon via nextrends.swissnexsanfrancisco.org

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    Last Updated on January 21, 2020

    The Best Way to Create a Vision for the Life You Want

    The Best Way to Create a Vision for the Life You Want

    Creating a vision for your life might seem like a frivolous, fantastical waste of time, but it’s not: creating a compelling vision of the life you want is actually one of the most effective strategies for achieving the life of your dreams. Perhaps the best way to look at the concept of a life vision is as a compass to help guide you to take the best actions and make the right choices that help propel you toward your best life.

    your vision of where or who you want to be is the greatest asset you have

      Why You Need a Vision

      Experts and life success stories support the idea that with a vision in mind, you are more likely to succeed far beyond what you could otherwise achieve without a clear vision. Think of crafting your life vision as mapping a path to your personal and professional dreams. Life satisfaction and personal happiness are within reach. The harsh reality is that if you don’t develop your own vision, you’ll allow other people and circumstances to direct the course of your life.

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      How to Create Your Life Vision

      Don’t expect a clear and well-defined vision overnight—envisioning your life and determining the course you will follow requires time, and reflection. You need to cultivate vision and perspective, and you also need to apply logic and planning for the practical application of your vision. Your best vision blossoms from your dreams, hopes, and aspirations. It will resonate with your values and ideals, and will generate energy and enthusiasm to help strengthen your commitment to explore the possibilities of your life.

      What Do You Want?

      The question sounds deceptively simple, but it’s often the most difficult to answer. Allowing yourself to explore your deepest desires can be very frightening. You may also not think you have the time to consider something as fanciful as what you want out of life, but it’s important to remind yourself that a life of fulfillment does not usually happen by chance, but by design.

      It’s helpful to ask some thought-provoking questions to help you discover the possibilities of what you want out of life. Consider every aspect of your life, personal and professional, tangible and intangible. Contemplate all the important areas, family and friends, career and success, health and quality of life, spiritual connection and personal growth, and don’t forget about fun and enjoyment.

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      Some tips to guide you:

      • Remember to ask why you want certain things
      • Think about what you want, not on what you don’t want.
      • Give yourself permission to dream.
      • Be creative. Consider ideas that you never thought possible.
      • Focus on your wishes, not what others expect of you.

      Some questions to start your exploration:

      • What really matters to you in life? Not what should matter, what does matter.
      • What would you like to have more of in your life?
      • Set aside money for a moment; what do you want in your career?
      • What are your secret passions and dreams?
      • What would bring more joy and happiness into your life?
      • What do you want your relationships to be like?
      • What qualities would you like to develop?
      • What are your values? What issues do you care about?
      • What are your talents? What’s special about you?
      • What would you most like to accomplish?
      • What would legacy would you like to leave behind?

      It may be helpful to write your thoughts down in a journal or creative vision board if you’re the creative type. Add your own questions, and ask others what they want out of life. Relax and make this exercise fun. You may want to set your answers aside for a while and come back to them later to see if any have changed or if you have anything to add.

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      What Would Your Best Life Look Like?

      Describe your ideal life in detail. Allow yourself to dream and imagine, and create a vivid picture. If you can’t visualize a picture, focus on how your best life would feel. If you find it difficult to envision your life 20 or 30 years from now, start with five years—even a few years into the future will give you a place to start. What you see may surprise you. Set aside preconceived notions. This is your chance to dream and fantasize.

      A few prompts to get you started:

      • What will you have accomplished already?
      • How will you feel about yourself?
      • What kind of people are in your life? How do you feel about them?
      • What does your ideal day look like?
      • Where are you? Where do you live? Think specifics, what city, state, or country, type of community, house or an apartment, style and atmosphere.
      • What would you be doing?
      • Are you with another person, a group of people, or are you by yourself?
      • How are you dressed?
      • What’s your state of mind? Happy or sad? Contented or frustrated?
      • What does your physical body look like? How do you feel about that?
      • Does your best life make you smile and make your heart sing? If it doesn’t, dig deeper, dream bigger.

      It’s important to focus on the result, or at least a way-point in your life. Don’t think about the process for getting there yet—that’s the next stepGive yourself permission to revisit this vision every day, even if only for a few minutes. Keep your vision alive and in the front of your mind.

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      Plan Backwards

      It may sound counter-intuitive to plan backwards rather than forwards, but when you’re planning your life from the end result, it’s often more useful to consider the last step and work your way back to the first. This is actually a valuable and practical strategy for making your vision a reality.

      • What’s the last thing that would’ve had to happen to achieve your best life?
      • What’s the most important choice you would’ve had to make?
      • What would you have needed to learn along the way?
      • What important actions would you have had to take?
      • What beliefs would you have needed to change?
      • What habits or behaviors would you have had to cultivate?
      • What type of support would you have had to enlist?
      • How long will it have taken you to realize your best life?
      • What steps or milestones would you have needed to reach along the way?

      Now it’s time to think about your first step, and the next step after that. Ponder the gap between where you are now and where you want to be in the future. It may seem impossible, but it’s quite achievable if you take it step-by-step.

      It’s important to revisit this vision from time to time. Don’t be surprised if your answers to the questions, your technicolor vision, and the resulting plans change. That can actually be a very good thing; as you change in unforeseeable ways, the best life you envision will change as well. For now, it’s important to use the process, create your vision, and take the first step towards making that vision a reality.

      Featured photo credit: Matt Noble via unsplash.com

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