Excellence in Crowdfunding: 5 Key Traits of Successful Teams

Not everybody is destined to be successful crowdfunders. But for those who are: we want them. All of them.

There is typically a gut-level feeling that tells us whether or not a new team of crowdfunders is a good fit for philanthropic crowdfunding. Because of USEED’s commitment to a predictable program model, we have established how to proactively and objectively determine which teams are most apt to go on to see success and fulfillment in crowdfunding for their initiative.


1. Coachability

Coachability is the mother of all good things. When a team is curious – genuinely curious – and desires to build on top of the indigenous knowledge of those who have crowdfunded before them, we get stars in our eyes and do a little jig (seriously!).

A coachable team is one that asks thoughtful questions, is open to experimenting with new ideas, and is flexible with their desired outcomes and expectations of what crowdfunding looks like. There are no better crowdfunders out there than passionate, committed learners who embrace insight from the experiences of others and are willing to implement strategies based on best practices.


2. Preparedness

In a world of last minute assignments, library sleepovers the night leading up to exams, and completing research papers in the eleventh hour, it’s no surprise to anybody that preparedness in students is a gem of a trait to have. It’s what sets them apart from their peers, and it’s what sets them apart from other crowdfunders – the ones who fail to meet their goal.

Teams who show up prepared, ready, and willing to do the work in order to launch their crowdfunding campaign are the same teams who will show up prepared, ready, and willing to actually fundraise once their campaign goes live.

Crowdfunding is easy to put on the backburner if it’s not a priority to every member of the team, but when a team has completed everything asked of them when we meet, this gives us confidence in the team’s engagement and later success in fundraising for their campaign.


3. Team Dynamics

You probably know the ancient proverb: “A rotten apple spoils the crowdfunding campaign.”

Okay, maybe that’s not actually a proverb, but it is the truth of team dynamics when it comes to crowdfunding. Crowdfunding can be a very emotional experience, as it requires a commitment to vulnerability and a working environment that allows for creativity to thrive.

Maybe you’ve worked with the bad apple in a team setting. If you have, you know the emotional power that person – or people – has over the group and that this often hinders desired results. This is why it is critical for a team of crowdfunders to come together under the umbrella of mutual respect, common values, and positive vibes.

A team with great dynamics knows the importance of overcoming challenges together, and they believe that everybody has a unique perspective and deserves to be heard. They empower and are kind to each other, and they listen when others are speaking. These are the teams who find success, both with their crowdfunding campaign and with the overall experience of crowdfunding together.


4. Urgency and Necessity

“How important is it that you get this funding? What would happen if you didn’t receive it?”

How a potential crowdfunder answers these questions tells us a lot about how they will prioritize their crowdfunding campaign when it goes live. If there is no pressing need or desire for funding, then you will likely encounter an unenthusiastic and disengaged team very quickly. However, just because a team doesn’t need the funding right this minute doesn’t mean that they won’t prioritize their campaign.

Crowdfunding revolves around a sense of urgency – after all, a team only has 30 days to fundraise once the campaign goes live. So the question becomes: Will they make those 30 days count?


5. Creative Initiative

Creative Initiative is a trait we typically see only when the aforementioned ones have been accounted for.

A team levels up when they embrace the truth that they are innovators, creators, and planners who can make big things happen through their own creative leadership. We’ve seen teams actively use the resources within their community to further their vision and campaign with great success.

If you happen upon a team that exhibits these five traits, please do the world a favor and give them the opportunity to crowdfund for their initiative.

We cannot wait to meet them.

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