As part of our recent project exploring women’s relationship with money, we heard from a female entrepreneur who expressed anxiety regarding what has become a rather popular means of securing capital — crowdfunding.
Shereen Faltas, founder and CEO of Awaken The Rebel in Venice, Calif., says she’s nervous to launch a campaign for her life-coaching business.
“It’s very strange to put yourself out there and say ‘Invest in me!’ or ‘Help me!’ or ‘I am doing something amazing, you should join in!'” she told us.
Faltas added of her hesitation: “I think what makes it awkward or a sticky subject is the fact that many people feel like if you’re asking for money then you are ‘taking’ something from them.”
Her decision to move forward with the campaign (regardless of her reservations) is a popular one — she is one of many enterprising individuals to pursue crowdfunding as an option. Sites such as Kickstarter, Indiegogo and GoFundMe are becoming increasingly popular options for raising money.
The rules and regulations of crowdfunding are still being defined, but the sites aim to help entrepreneurs — especially members of marginalized groups — gain access to much-needed capital.
That is why some crowdfunding sites specifically cater to women. We recently spoke with Deborah Jackson of Plum Alley, a platform designed to connect women with the money they need for their businesses, projects and initiatives.
“Data shows that women’s projects and companies are underfunded and women still experience a much harder time raising funds than their male counterparts for comparable opportunities,” she said.
Jackson provided a few tips that nervous entrepreneurs like Faltas might want to implement to ensure that their crowdfunding campaign is a success:
- Have a large network — and utilize it.
- Create a clear marketing plan.
- Convey goals and motivation in an articulate fashion.
- Offer valuable and desirable rewards.
And as for Faltas, her tactic for overcoming her anxiety is quite simple — she is doing so by “realizing that, as an entrepreneur, [she] will go broke if [she doesn’t] overcome it.”
She continued, “[T]he truth is that I’d rather overcome this challenge and continue to help and coach people to living their highest calling and changing the world, than shrink and be comfortable.”
For all posts from this project, please click here.