Monday, October 7, 2013

Quick, How Do I "Crowd-Source"?

Fans, can anybody out there tell me how I go about "crowd-sourcing"?  I need to raise $5000 fast.

It happened thuswise;  when Rasty and I bought our wee cottage here in Buckeye, we found that there was an empty lot next door that used to be part of ours.  It was totally "unimproved" --  no water, no sewage, no electricity, completely "unbuildable", and in fact full of trash -- but if we could get it and rejoin it to our lot, we could plant it to a whole mini-orchard of fruit trees.  A friend found and called up the owner, who said he'd sell the lot for $12,000, but hinted that he could be talked lower.  Since we'd spent all we had buying our house, we decided to let him wait a few months before asking how much lower he'd go.

Well, today we found out.  A couple of brokers knocked on our door an asked if we'd move our Ford Bronco off the lot, because some workmen were going to come and clean up the lot for sale.  A few more questions, and I found that the owner -- who's been in an accident, has a lot of medical bills and needs money fast -- was now willing to sell it for $9,000.  I promptly called the owner offered $4000 down (all we've got in the bank), "cash on the barrelhead, quick sale", and the rest as soon as we can get it.  He agreed not to list the property publicly until he hears back from me.

So, where do I raise $5000 fast?  We're absolutely NOT going to mortgage the cottage, or sell our one and only vehicle, or tie ourselves to a loan shark.  All I can think of is "crowd-sourcing" -- and I have no idea how to do it.  What are the crowd-sourcing websites, and how do they work?  And what could I offer the folk who are willing to put up money to the project?  I could promise autographed copies of my books and albums to anyone who'll send me $100 or better, but honestly, my fans could buy those from my publishers' websites -- or from Amazon -- a helluva lot cheaper.  I could promise to write a song, or poem, or story for any such pledger, but how many of you fans out there are willing to go for that?  I can promise free exotic fruit from the orchard (how would I ship it?) once it starts producing, but how long will that take?

Can anybody give me some ideas here?  ...And of course, if anybody wants to chip in, you could send to my PayPal account at  Please let me know, folks;  I really am a Toddler On The Information Highway here.

--Leslie <;)))><  


Antongarou said...

Note: this is from the view of someone who used these things as customer. I did not raise money this way.

The sites I saw are Kickstarter and Indiegogo. several things of note:

1) usually there is a very basic level(1-5$) that gives you around nothing.

2) IIRC Tom Smith's base price for a comissioned song was 350$ as of a couple of years ago. It might be worth it to ask him how many people comission from him each year.

3) You can make this a "hard limit" thing, which means you won't get the money unless you reached the target.

Other things you can offer are:
1) personal performance for a person and their friends, limiting it to people who live in a reasonable area around you.

2) If you like making preserves - sending them a couple of jars of preserves from the first fruits of the orchard.

3)Recording a cover for a song of someone's choice(again limiting it somewhat)

Leslie Fish said...

All these sound workable. I just started a campaign on, promising an autographed CD for $50-100 donations, and an autographed book for $100+. I went for the "flexible" funding option, which means I'll keep whatever I get, whether I meet the goal or not. Every little bit helps! The "first fruits preserves" idea is certainly workable; I've never made preserves in my life, but Rasty has -- and there's a beekeeper just down the road. Hmmm... Thanks much!

mrs_sweetpeach said...

Can you post a link to you on GoFundMe? I tried to find you there and failed.

Doug said...

Have a look at Entrepreneur Magazine online. Dear hubby says they've got a nice article that's an intro to crowdfunding "top ten crowdfunding websites" by Sally Outlaw.

Mary Piero Carey

Linkmeister said...

Here's the link to the Entrepreneur magazine article with ten crowdfunding sites mentioned by Doug above.

Leslie Fish said...

Hmmm, I don't know why GoFundMe makes my campaign -- "Rare and Endangered Orchard" -- so hard to find. Anyway, they linked to my Facebook Page, so it should be reachable there. I'm really feeling my way around in the dark here.