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Let’s do a crowdfunder. Let’s do it during a global pandemic. Said no one. Ever!

Nicky Evans • Nov 5, 2020 • 4 min read


Cards on the table, we weren’t sure we would meet our target when we started planning this. All we had been hearing about was colleagues who had lost most of their work and people being furloughed or made redundant. Lets face it, a global pandemic is hardly the time to decide to start crowdfunding! Undeterred (anyone that knows either Jennifer Bird or me, will understand this), we did it anyway.

We had a detailed plan for our crowdfunder, which as with everything at the moment, was thrown out of the window due to delays caused by Covid home working and waiting for approvals. Anyone who knows anything about fund raising will know that the warm up/lead up time is crucial… we didn’t have that. We also lost the first 3 days of our crowdfunder too — we had intended to launch on the morning of the 19th. We actually launched at 6pm on 21st September. So all in all, we lost a week and a half — which is a lot of time for a crowdfunding campaign. This couldn’t be helped and was just due to the current situation we all find ourselves in.

Despite all of this, we met our £5,000 target at the beginning of our third week.… Amazing!

We've reached 100% graphic

Stretch target

Our stretch target was certainly a stretch. We decided to double our original target, as we felt we had nothing to lose, as anything above the £5,000 we needed would be a bonus.

As a personal goal, I had wanted to achieve £7,500 — our original target plus the additional money from the NatWest Back Her Business scheme, we more than achieved that, so were over the moon. If we hadn’t lost the time at the beginning of the project, I have no doubt that we would have achieved the £10,000 stretch target too.

The analytical stuff…

Kickstarter, a different hosting platform says that “In our experience working with nearly 2,000 crowdfunding campaigns, if you’re getting conversion rates of at least 6% from “organic” traffic and at least 1–2% from social media ads, then you’re probably doing rather well”.

Our conversion* rate was 12.6%, which was absolutely fantastic!

(*Conversion rate is the number of people who actually pledge after visiting the page).

The highest number of visits to our project page was on the 24th September when John McDonnell MP gave us his video and endorsement and a certain Jeremy Corbyn MP retweeted us. We leapt from an average of 80 visits a day to 250 on that day!

Supporters and highlights

We had a total of 255 supporters and the majority of those were deaf people and interpreters — our communities and prospective members. We are so encouraged by the support given to us and want to thank you all.

Along with our community supporters, we also had some notable names backing us; John McDonnell MP, Nadia Whittome MP, Grace Blakeley, and Labour Disabled Member Representative candidate for the NEC Ellen Morrison, we had RTs from Jeremy Corbyn, Ian Byrne MP, Francesca Martinez, to name but a few.

We had blogs published on Limping Chicken and the Co-operative Party website. We also had a piece printed in The Morning Star.

The highlight for us was reaching our target and the live events — our Facebook Live Q&A and our members meeting.

Speaking to our members and communities was so valuable and if was great to get the level of engagement that we did. We will be doing much more of this!

For those that missed them, we had some amazing videos which we shared throughout the campaign. These can still be accessed via our website. We’ve had some feedback that the YouTube videos subtitling can’t be accessed via a phone or tablet, so have taken this on board and will make sure that we add these directly to the videos in future.

Thank you so much to everyone who donated and supported us by sharing our posts.

We know that times are tough for a lot of people and it was great to see people who weren’t able to donate, instead sharing our posts and drumming up supporters that way instead. Thank you.

Helping hands high-fiving and "thank you" with red heart

“WE MISSED IT!”

We have been contacted by quite a few people who missed the deadline for the crowdfunder but who still want to donate. Taking this feedback onboard, we have now added a “Donate” page to our website.