Who wouldn’t like to find gold? I know I would, but I also know that I’m not willing to venture down into a mountain to go looking for it. Fortunately, to find startup gold, I only need to head over to Beta List and shake a few web pages around in the ole brain pan. When something shiny catches my eye that just might prove to be the real deal, true gold, I plan on sifting it out from the rest of the sparkly startups and letting everyone have a closer look.
This Week’s Prospect – Fund Your Travel
I don’t know about you, but I’m surrounded by travel fiends – and that’s just my close circle of friends, not to mention all the entrepreneurs I encounter who talk travel schemes and dreams all the time. The good people of the Midwest and Northeast might quadruple the following of Fund Your Travel this week alone, as temperatures remain frozen below zero.
Fund Your Travel is a platform for crowdfunding out-of-the-box travels. The concept entails creating a unique travel campaign, setting a funding deadline, and then asking the travel community and partnering businesses to support the adventure.
Successfully funded travelers will blog about their trips, post updates and photos and more, essentially remaining active on social networks so that the Fund Your Travel community and media can follow the trail.
Why It Just Might Work
The right trip offers businesses enormous PR and advertising potential. What’s more, companies set the price that they’re willing to pay by contributing what they’re comfortable funding. Increasing the odds of travelers receiving target funds, numerous parties may seize upon the value of media exposure – hotels, restaurants, travel providers, retail shops, and other services.
Any participating group will have the opportunity to raise awareness for their social cause or draw attention to their brand throughout a global community. I imagine clever social activists or creative non-profit organizations using the platform to develop inspiring trips that draw new recruits to their mission.
Not For Fools
As with other crowdfunding projects, the key to survival is growing a large, active community. The travel theme presents no problem here. I also applaud Fund Your Travel’s approach (which is becoming a noticeable trend), trying to incorporate sponsor businesses into the funding pool. This tactic not only expands the social network that will evaluate projects, but gives campaign developers access to resources they wouldn’t otherwise have. Let’s face it, great videos that explain campaigns well and are exciting themselves – well conceived projects that offer attractive rewards – stand a far greater chance of reaching their funding goals.
Miles to go, but I for one hope Fund Your Travel takes hold. I have a dream of going to Antarctica and…