Ignite Ole Miss Project Application

Ignite Ole Miss is the University of Mississippi’s crowdfunding platform for community fundraising. Crowdfunding offers our donors a new avenue to provide support directly to the schools, programs, and specific projects at the university that are most meaningful to them. Crowdfunding also assists our faculty and students achieve their philanthropic goals. Crowdfunding ideas: innovative projects, service trips, events, research, and other UM-specific ventures.

    3 PHASES OF A PROJECT

    QUIET PHASE (campaign pre-launch) • This phase should begin approximately 4-6 weeks before the project’s launch date. • This time will be spent getting your campaign ready (writing content, creating videos, compiling your email list, developing strategies, etc.). • Your group will have several meetings with an Ignite Ole Miss coordinator to help you develop and plan your project. ACTIVE PHASE (campaign launch) • This phase will last 30-45 days and constitutes the live campaign. • These weeks are crucial! During the campaign, team members are expected to send out at least six (6) email “asks” to their personal contact lists, make four (4) or more updates to their project page, push out asks via social media, and otherwise make themselves available to answer questions about and raise awareness around their project. FULFILLMENT PHASE (post-campaign) • After the project, groups are responsible for sending out thank-you emails, final updates, and any promised perks to donors. • Remember—making your donors feel special now means that they will want to come back and support your next project.

    1. PROJECT CATEGORY

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    2. PROJECT CREATOR | PERSONAL INFORMATION

    Ignite Ole Miss users must be part of the Ole Miss community via an academic department, student group, or other official entity.
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    Must be a valid email address
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    3. STUDENT ORGANIZATION INFORMATION

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    4. PROJECT INFORMATION | GENERAL

    Ignite Ole Miss projects must support Ole Miss' overall mission by improving our community—on campus and beyond. Crowdfunding does more than bring in funds—it also serves as a marketing tool to raise awareness of your mission. Crowdfunding is most effective for funding specific projects or campaigns but does not work well for general unrestricted fundraising. It is best to be clear and specific about what you’re trying to fund. Today’s donors want to know where their money is going and how it will make a difference.
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    5. PROJECT INFORMATION | FINANCIAL

    Typical crowdfunding projects raise between $2,000 - $10,000. Of course this number will depend entirely on the size of your potential donor pool, your personal contacts, and the amount of personal effort devoted to the project. It is best to set modest, attainable, and realistic goals—and transcend them. Your donors will be inspired to support a project if it reflects success and momentum.
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    6. PROJECT INFORMATION | SOCIAL MEDIA

    Crowdfunding relies on personal networking—your best supporters love Ole Miss, but they REALLY love you and your project. Crowdfunding is a peer-to-peer solicitation rather than an institutional solicitation. You can use your personal, group, department or team’s email lists, Facebook pages, Twitter feeds, LinkedIn groups, etc. to promote your project. It’s best to bring your own “crowd.” If you or your team do not have a pre-existing audience (personal or otherwise), then crowdfunding might not be the best platform to raise money for your project.
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    7. PROJECT INFORMATION | TEAM PARTICIPATION

    Project campaigns run for 30-45 days but projects require a full 10-12 weeks of focused, intense work before and after the campaign. The project creator will need to provide updates and remain actively engaged (new videos, social media postings such as Twitter and Facebook, campus events, and email). It is recommended that the project creator commit 1 hour per day and each team member commit 30-60 minutes per day for the length of the active campaign.
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    8. PROJECT MATERIALS

    The best way to get donors to support your cause through crowdfunding is to create an emotional and compelling fundraising page. When possible, it is best to use pictures and videos to tell a convincing and irresistible story, as well as to explain to people exactly how much money you need and how the money will be used. NOTE: *The video does not need to be produced in high-quality; “grass roots” videos work well for crowdfunding because they are authentic and compelling. Departments or organizations can shoot their own video using an iPad or camera.
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    9. DEPARTMENTAL SUPPORT

    Most campus departments have a communications specialist. This specialist can provide design and marketing assistance to increase your project’s success.
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    APPLICATION PROCESS

    The Ignite Ole Miss Selection Committee will approve project applications.

    THANK YOU!

    We appreciate your interest in Ignite Ole Miss and will be contacting you shortly about your project application. Contact us at igniteolemiss@gmail.com with any questions.