Say you have a project that you always wanted to do. But your game, movie, medical device, or yoga studio will need thousands, nay, millions of dollars. Money you just don't have.
What will you do?
Ask your friends and family? Get a loan? Find an angel investor?
How about asking hundreds or thousands of strangers on the Internet to chip in, starting at $20. If this sounds strange to you, you’ve been under a rock the last couple of years.
Asking strangers to fund stuff on the Internet is dubbed “crowdfunding.” Prior to crowdfunding websites, getting this kind of cash was painful. Now crowdfunding is funding many new and interesting things. It is a genuine phenomenon.
Kickstarter and Indiegogo lead the way. However, it was only a matter of time before someone disrupted them.
Meet Chris LaBonty and Nolan Thompson.
Chris is 20 and Nolan is 21. Chris is an expert in programming, coding, wordpress, and building platforms. Nolan is an expert in social media, developing strategic partnerships, and creative thinking.
They are two online entrepreneurs out of Orange County, California who will soon launch a new online crowdfunding platform: HeadFunder.
To say the least, they are optimistically delusional and are on a mission to change the world in positive ways. So I reached out to them to gauge their take on crowdfunding.
LaBonty and Thomspon commented on their passion for crowdfunding:
“We both contributed to campaigns on other platforms before. We believe in crowdfunding and helping others. The idea that the people can join together and make powerful things happen is truly inspirational to us.”
They also think that it will be one of the biggest financial industries in the world within the next few years. But, in their view, most of the crowdfunding platforms out there are either project based or strictly only for personals.
LaBonty and Thompson see the future of the industry lay in “a stronger connection between crowdfunding and social media.” The two created HeadFunder.
HeadFunder’s sort of brilliant.
The new venture takes th etraditional crowdfunding model made famous by Kickstarter and Indiegogo, and makes it more social.
In the process, it gives anyyone the chance to raise funds. Here's how it works:
You can create campaigns for just about anything. Projects can range from the arts to film and video to games. Raise money for causes that support animals or human rights or health. Pay for personal needs like education, funerals, or even your bills.
This is where it gets interesting. You can build a following, earn badges, earn money, and much more!
While LaBonty and Thompson were tight-lipped about their funding. Headfunder will only charge 2% for successful campaigns and puts 10% of its profits to selected projects that users vote on.
LaBonty and Thompson are starting small. But thinking big.
“We are currently only going to accept campaign creators in the USA. Our funders can be anywhere in the world though. We plan on going international for campaign creators as soon as were ready!”
The two young entrepreneurs have a good start with HeadFunder having a Twitter following over 56,000 and almost 10,000 likes on its Facebook.
Crowdfunding is going mainstream.
HeadFunder tests that as this crowdfunding trend grows, crowds will express a different sort of wisdom. Funding projects that foundations would not or entrepreneurs the venture capitalist would not.
Traditionalist argue that the crowd will simply make mistakes. LaBonty and Thompson are betting that they are wrong.
"We're both crowdfunders. And we love the projects we invest in. With Headfunder, we're opening other the door so anyone with a dream and passion can join us."