Hugh Crosthwaite on running multiple fundraising campaigns at once
In 2017/18, Hugh Crosthwaite was one of our MATCH Lab recipients. He aimed to raise funds for his music project, Cassandra which was designed to draw attention to climate change and inspire action. We speak to Hugh about his multifaceted fundraising strategy.
What was your strategy going into your campaign?
The strategy in my campaign revolved around spreading my risk across different platforms.
I aimed to have an approximately 30% margin for error in terms of fundraising across donations, crowdfunding and ticket sales.
This would mean that I could afford to experiment a little without risking the success of the project overall.
It was very important to me also that I be able to provide a sense of real-world value to the people that were going to support me.
For example, in terms of crowdfunding rewards, I thought a lot about what rewards I would find valuable, and how the cost of those rewards would sit when compared with similar items on the open market (e.g. concert tickets).
Tell us why you chose to use both the Australian Cultural Fund and Pozible?
I felt that it was important to use a platform to raise money through crowdfunding as well as an alternative platform to raise money through donations.
I believe that the Australian Cultural Fund platform was more suitable for facilitating donations because the ACF brand is closely linked with the production of high-quality artwork.
Similarly, the Pozible brand and the infrastructure provided was very effective for crowdfunding.
I felt that the different platforms would provide advantages for focused fundraising activities to certain groups of supporters.
You set your targets for these campaigns quite differently, how did you decide to target for different amounts of donations?
I began by setting the target for my ACF campaign. I felt that once I had received promises from significant donors, those donations would almost certainly be made.
This meant that I had some security around the ACF component of the fundraising.
After confirming donations I was in a better position to work out the degree to which I would need to rely on crowdfunding as well as ticket sales my entire budget.
Those latter budget components essentially defined themselves by reference to what the overall budget of the project required.
How did you thank your donors and how will you continue to stay in touch with them?
I thanked donors personally, by inviting them to participate in the premiere performance of my work so that they could see what their contribution had created, and by sending a small personalised token of appreciation.
In relation to the crowdfunding supporters, I did all that I could to ensure that their rewards were provided to them as quickly as possible.
I don’t think that you need to do a great deal to pursue relationships with your supporters but I think it’s very important to be genuine when you do have contact with them.
After all, they have put their faith and trust in you and that deserves respect.
How did your marketing differ when promoting two campaigns?
I didn’t really market the ACF campaign because all of my communication with ACF donors was face-to-face. In relation to crowdfunding, I undertook a range of promotional activities including Facebook promotions and quite a lot of individual emails to people that I thought would be interested in the project.
I also created update videos using my mobile phone that I could upload to a Facebook page and Instagram.
I have to admit though, my marketing of the fundraising project was not particularly sophisticated.
If you could do your campaign again using your experience — what would you change?
I would be more prepared, started earlier and work harder.
Many people say they would aim higher in terms of the money that they sought to raise, but I wouldn’t do that because I set my budget quite high at the start. The money that I did raise was just enough for all the activities, including the little luxuries, my project required.
Find out more about Hugh Crosthwaite.