• Crowdfunding

    Congratulations! You are about to start crowdfunding at Worcester State University. This document will tell you who you need to meet with and what you need to do to get your campaign up and running.

    If you have any questions contact Sierra Trudel, the Assistant Director of Annual Giving at 508-929-8872 or

  • How To Start Crowdfunding


    Fundraising must be in line with the University’s mission and goals. See “WSU Crowdfunding Guidelines” for examples and suggestions.

    1. Meetings:
      1. All fundraising ideas must be approved by area leaders
        1. Athletics: Coach and Athletics Director
        2. Student Activities: Club Advisor and Associate Director of OSILD
        3. Academic Centers: Center Director and Associate VP of Academic Affairs or Dean
        4. Academic Programs: Department Chair and Dean
      2. Fundraising for International Travel Projects must work with International Programs
      3. Fundraisers must meet with the Office of University Advancement
        1. Assistant Director of Annual Giving to setup the campaign
        2. Assistant Director of Financial Records to form your financial plan
    2. Campaign Name: Choose a name that is short yet descriptive. Examples: “2018 WSU Class Gift”, “Campaign for the Chorale”, or “Pride Alliance Campaign”
    3. Goal: How much money are you trying to raise or how many donors do you want? Be realistic. You can always go over your goal. People want to contribute to a winning team.
    4. Timeframe: Create a sense of urgency by limiting your campaign to no more than 30 days.
    5. Statement: Write a short paragraph explaining your cause and what you will do with the funds raised. Your statement should be 50 to 100 words. Include a photograph in your statement.
    6. Video: The purpose of your fundraising video is to make a connection with your audience and compel them to support your campaign. Your video should be 30 to 60 seconds and include an introduction to you and your team, a reason why your team is worth supporting, and an ask for support. See “10 Tips for a Great Fundraising Video” for more details.
    7. Advocates: Prepare a team of at least 7 (more is better) people who will donate to your cause and signup on your campaign page as an advocate. Advocates share your campaign page on Facebook and Twitter. It is their job to spread the word about your campaign and drive interest and engagement. Successful campaigns have a robust advocate team.
    WSU Crowdfunding Guidelines

    Money that is fundraised must be used for WSU projects in alignment with the department/club/team mission.

    Purchases are made through WSU Procurement and must follow university policy.

    Examples of things teams can fundraise for

    1. A scholarship Fund
    2. The student emergency fund
    3. Their department/club/team/center fund
    4. Student/professor travel for research, service, or conference (must work with International Programs and consult with the appropriate Dean)
    5. Equipment for the team/club/program
    6. Team apparel
    7. Team travel expenses

    Things you cannot raise money for

    • Outside organizations (e.g Red Cross, Doctors Without Borders)
    • Personal items


    • You can raise money to send a group of WSU students to Mexico to help clean up after a natural disaster.
    • You cannot raise money to send a check to Mexico to help the clean up effort after a natural disaster.
    Tips for a Successful Campaign
    1. Train Your Advocates:

      Find those you believe will be your biggest advocates, educate them on the new tools available via GiveCampus, and empower them to feel ownership over the success of the campaign. Reinforce the message to your supporters that their impact is magnified when they give AND spread the word. GiveCampus provides numerous options including ways for supporters to track their outreach, create their own matching gifts and challenges, and even create ‘selfie’ videos so they can use their own words to share why giving back is important to them. See “5 Ways Your Friends Can Support Your Campaign” for more details.

    2. Post Regular Updates:

      Your supporters are the lifeblood of your campaign. They deserve to be updated frequently and thoroughly. Using the Update tool on the campaign page, you can choose if you want to push notifications to supporters via email or simply update the campaign page. Consider including photos (and even video) of your progress and important milestones - that way, supporters will feel more invested in the success of the campaign. Copy and paste your updates to Facebook or Twitter to reach even more people.

    3. Prepare Matches and Challenges:

      Matches and Challenges represent an incredible opportunity for donors to leverage their own giving to encourage others to join them in making a meaningful contribution. The GiveCampus platform gives advocates and generous donors tools, like the ability to set up a match or challenge directly on the platform, designed to effectively solicit their peers.

    4. Motivate Your Donors and Advocates with Incentives:

      Incentives such as swag, giveaways, or shout-outs, can help you inspire your supporters to go the extra mile. Incentives for donors can be tied to specific donation levels (e.g. 'For a donation of $100 or more..."). Incentives for Advocates can be tied to the Advocate's impact in terms of either the number of donations they generate OR the sum total of the donations they generate. Incentives can be limited in quantity (e.g. only available to the first 25 donors who make a gift of a certain size).

    5. Stack the Deck:

      Have 5-10% of your goal already met before your campaign goes live. A good strategy is to have your advocates make their gifts as soon as your campaign opens. No one wants to be the first one in the pool and people like to give to winning teams.

    10 Tips for a Great Fundraising Video

    The purpose of your fundraising video is to make a connection with your audience and compel them to support your campaign. You’re not up for an Oscar. You don’t need to invest significant resources. So long as you follow the tips below, you’ll be well on your way to a great video!

    Content Tips

    1. Introduce Yourself: Tell viewers who you are and your connection to the campaign.
    2. Make It Personal and Tell a Story: Tell the viewer why you’re passionate about the campaign and why they should be, too. Explain the goal of the campaign, why achieving that goal is worthy of their support, and how the money raised will advance an important cause.
    3. Make an Ask!: Ask the viewer to contribute to the campaign and to share it with friends. The crisper and clearer the call-to-action, the more impactful it will be.
    4. Keep It Snappy: People have short attention spans, so don’t lose potential supporters by dragging on. We recommend that videos last no more than 60 seconds. At the very least, be sure to deliver your ask in the first 30-45 seconds.
    5. Let Your Excitement Shine Through: The more enthusiastic you are, the more excited viewers will be. Bring some energy!

    Technical Tips

    1. Hold Your Phone Horizontally: If filming with your phone, hold it horizontally and not vertically.
    2. Frame Your Shot: Film at eye-level or slightly above. No one looks good from a low angle.
    3. Use Good Light: Natural light is best, so go outside if you can. A cloudy day is perfect for filming outside. If filming inside, light up the room as much as possible or film next to a sunny window. The more light, the less grainy your footage will be.
    4. Audio Is Important: Choose a quiet location to film so that your voice will be heard, not distracting background noise.
    5. Keep the Camera Steady: If possible, use a tripod. If using your phone and filming yourself, use both hands to grip it and keep your elbows close to your body for more stability.
    5 Ways Your Friends Can Support Your Campaign

    Help make your GiveCampus campaign a success by encouraging your friends and family to do any or all of the below!

    1. Make a gift

      Big or small, every gift counts. (Don’t forget to lead by example by making a gift yourself.)

      How: Send your friends and family the campaign URL

    2. Share the campaign

      Spread the word and show your support!

      How: At the top of every campaign page are buttons to share via email, Facebook, and Twitter.

    3. Become an advocate

      With just a few clicks, create a GiveCampus account and gain the ability to track your impact. See how many clicks, gifts, and dollars your outreach generates!

      How: Go to the very top right of the campaign page to sign up.

    4. Create a matching gift or challenge

      Encourage your network to join you in making a gift. You can match gifts dollar for dollar up to a fixed amount or structure your challenge to be based on donor participation.

      How: Look right below the video on the left side of the campaign page.

    5. Upload a personal plea

      Create a short video in which you explain why you’re supporting this campaign and why others should do the same and upload directly to GiveCampus. “Selfie's” work great!

      How: Go to the advocates tab just below the donate now button.