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Social Media Roundup: Could Crowdfunding Work for Events?

By / Jun 4, 2014 (iStock/Thinkstock)

A crowdfunded event could be a good no-risk way to see if there’s interest in a conference ahead of time, but it involves a lot of extra work. Also: the perks of a poolside event.

If a gathering doesn’t drum up the level of interest you’re looking for, there’s a chance it could mean a big financial hit.

But for events where the risk-reward ratio is a little off-balance, crowdfunding may present an opportunity for associations. That doesn’t mean it’ll be easy, though. More in today’s Social Media Roundup:

Paid for by the Crowd

Could crowdfunding be a way for small associations to gin up interest in events without big risks? It’s possible, event technology pro Cathy Key writes on the Event Manager Blog, but watch out for pitfalls.

For one thing, you need to do sufficient planning—that means you’ll need a team of people to build up the event, a couple of videos in the can, and plenty of market research to help you understand what makes sense for your needs. It’s not as easy as starting a Kickstarter, and, for that matter, Kickstarter may be the wrong platform for your organization.

“There are lots of platforms available for crowdfunding, each with different capabilities,” Key writes. “Variables are the length of campaign you can run, the percentage that you will be charged, whether you can keep the money even if the campaign does not reach its target, and the countries that are supported.”

Can you see potential for crowdfunding an event or two at your organization? (ht @etouches)

Take a Dip

Think you could schedule a meeting around a watery venue? Fast Company‘s David Zax points out the pluses and minuses of the poolside retreat, which (depending on the parameters and people involved) can be a boon to creativity and may even produce better work.

“More traditional companies at least need to find temporary venues to let their hair down,” Zax writes. “Shipping the sales team down to South Beach can be a way of showing your employees that deep down, when you want to be, you’re as cool as [Google cofounder] Sergey Brin.”

But consider the potential downsides. Things might get awkward for attendees if the relaxed networking environment leads people to let their hair down a little too much, spilling the beans about things they might never mention in an office environment.

By the way, there’s an entire conference concept built around a pool, YxYY. (ht @topi)

Ernie Smith

Ernie Smith is the social media journalist for Associations Now, a former newspaper guy, and a man who is dangerous when armed with a good pun. More »

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