Crowd Funding – Successes & Fails

Here at DDL Advertising, we are all fans of social media and marketing. So when the two are combined, we believe that the possibilities are endless. In order for an individual to consider themselves a marketer, many people believe that person must have a PhD or similarly prestigious degree. However, we seldom realize how much marketing individuals do in their everyday lives.

Many people have heard of GoFundMe. GoFundMe is an online crowdsourcing platform where users can explain their circumstances for needing money in the form of friendly or anonymous donations. Users appeal to their social media followers to support a worthy cause by asking them to contribute to a monetary goal. While GoFundMe has had countless causes worthy of donations, the crowdfunding platform (and similar sites like Kickstarter) have also had their share of funding failures and silly successes. Here are six of them:

Funding Fails

1. In 2010, Adam Dolgin began an effort to raise money equivalent to a $50,000 annual salary. The new father of 1 wanted to be paid to stay home to prove that “anything moms can do, dads can do equally”. The $50,000 GoFundMe effort raised $10 in five years.

2. In 2015, Alabama State Senator Paul Sanford set up a GoFundMe campaign to raise a whooping $300 million for individuals to help pay Alabama state taxes – whether they lived there or not. The campaign has raised less than $2,000 in almost 2 years.

3. A woman identified as Cinnamon Nicole set up a GoFundMe campaign in 2016 with a goal of raising $100,000 after spending her family fortune on PowerBall tickets. The $100,000, according to Cinnamon Nicole, would go towards a new effort to win the jackpot. GoFundMe shut down the campaign shortly after.

Silly Successes

1. In 2012, a campaign to raise money for a faux “grizzly bear coat” took Kickstarter by storm. With an original goal to raise $2,000 for the costume-like creation, “Griz Coat” ended up crowdsourcing just under $30,000 in 20 days.

2. A campaign to raise funds for a futuristic razor, Lazer Razor, went viral on crowdfunding platform Kickstarter. The innovative invention that claimed to use laser technology to remove unwanted facial hair raised over $4 million dollars – way past their $160,000 goal. The campaign was suspended when it became clear that the illegitimate “prototype” Lazer Razor featured was in violation of Kickstarter rules.

3. Ohio native Zack “Danger” Brown started a Kickstarter campaign to raise $10 to fund the making of potato salad. What started as a purely satirical fundraising effort, ended up raising over $55,000 in 30 days.