How About a Little Competition with Your Crowdfunding?

Screen Shot 2013-08-23 at 7.53.54 PM

This is  a guest post from my Toronto-based cause marketing buddy Phil Haid. He runs a great company called Public Inc. You should check them out. Anyway, because professional baseball in Toronto is sooooooo bad, Phil came out with this great cause promotion for Yankee and Sox fans that ends Monday. And, as I like to say: "Go Sox!"

Hey, New York Yankee and Boston Red Sox fans! This is especially for you.

If the money were all going to a good cause…

Would you pay to see Ryan Dempster dressed up as Captain America?

Would you throw in a few bucks for the chance to score 2 tickets and a meet and greet with David Robertson?

Would sweet victory off the field be motivation enough to help a favorite player take down a hated rival in an old-fashioned charity throwdown?

We’re betting it would.

Fan-atical fans and the celebrated Yankees – Red Sox rivalry are at the core of our latest installment of the Power of 2: MLB Edition (www.power-of-2.org).

It’s a twist on the wildly successful crowdfunding phenomenon that puts celebrities – and their fans – in the driver’s seat.

The Power of 2 platform pits two friendly rivals and their fans against one another over two weeks to see who can raise the most money for the favorite cause. The ask of fans is simple: give $2 or more, share it with at least 2 friends, and win a chance to meet your favorite celeb while helping a great cause. And just to heat up the competition, there is a friendly wager between the two celebrities whereby the “loser” has to do something mildly embarrassing and funny that people will want to watch.

When we launched this platform two years ago we were guided by a set of observations about the way celebrities engaged with charities that made us believe there were better ways to unlock more money and awareness for their favorite causes.

Here’s what we observed:

  • Celebrities (athletes, musicians, actors – even CEOs and political pundits) are doing more for charity than ever before, BUT
  • By and large, most celebrities are still doing fairly traditional things to support their favorite causes (e.g., public service announcements, charity auctions, “rubber chicken” dinners) which are great, but don’t necessarily create great opportunities to engage their broad fan bases directly in the experience, AND YET
  • Celebrities are a powerful way for fans/citizens to get engaged in and give to worthwhile causes because of their tremendous influence and reach.

So we set out to develop a platform that would leverage celebrities’ fan bases to engage them in a fun and meaningful experience that would cause something good to happen. We call it the “Power of 2” – two celebrities engaging in a fun head to head show down with their fans to raise money for worthwhile causes.

To date we have raised over $100,000 for charity in a handful of competitions. We’ve also generated a lot of awareness for several great causes thanks in large measure to great media pick-up (especially of the wagers) by ESPN, Fox Sports, CBS, ABC and NBC, helped the charities acquire new supporters, and increased the twitter and facebook followings for each of our celebs. But we think we can do a whole lot more.

So what have we learned?

If both celebs:

  • Are passionate about raising money & awareness for their respective charities
  • Are competitive, and want to win
  • Aren’t afraid to tap their own networks of supporters and fans
  • Have real influence with their fans, and
  • Are willing to engage in a fun wager (that they’d rather not lose
  • Then the chances of raising significant money through the power of the crowd is there.

Care to join in the fun?  Help Dempster & Robertson in their quest for glory (and the greater good) by visiting www.power-of-2.org today and help us prove competitive crowdfunding is worth it.