Crowdfunding is the University of South Carolina’s community fundraising platform. Members of the Carolina family create projects to raise money for innovative initiatives, service trips, events, research, and other USC-specific ventures.
While popular sites like Kickstarter, GoFundMe and Indiegogo are great, it is important to build our own, USC-specific platform. Here's why you’ll like crowdfunding at Carolina:
• No external fees—the money raised goes toward the designated project.
• Engaged audience—USC’s alumni support their community.
• Publicity—Participating groups get access to USC's various media outlets.
• Institutional support—USC’s crowdfunding team is available to help groups exceed their fundraising goals.
We also provide technological, administrative, communication, and marketing support. Why? Because we think our student activity, faculty, and research groups are great, and we want you to succeed.
Who can use crowdfunding?
Crowdfunding users must be part of the Carolina community via an academic department, student group, or other official entity. Crowdfunding projects must support USC’s overall mission: the education of the state’s citizens through teaching, research, creative activity, and community engagement.
What are the requirements for a crowdfunding project?
At the most basic level, projects need:
- A story with a compelling need and a short video that explains the project/need.
- A team of no less than five individuals including a project leader and project champions.
- A crowd of constituents you believe will help fund the project. Who will you contact?
Additionally, crowdfunding projects need to be supported by an active, engaged project team. That team will work with a USC crowdfunding mentor to create content (project descriptions, videos, emails, posts, pics, etc.) for the group’s project.
How much work does it take to run a crowdfunding project?
A lot! Crowdfunding projects take 10—12 weeks of focused, intense work.
There are three phases to a crowdfunding project.
- Quiet Phase – 4-6 weeks of creating content, a marketing schedule and time for review
- Active Phase – 30-45 days of active solicitation via email and social media
- Post Campaign Phase – anywhere from 3-9 months of stewardship and updates after project
How do I get my project on USC’s crowdfunding site?
Once our pilot phase has concluded, all proposed crowdfunding projects must fill out the available application on our crowdfunding site. All applications will be reviewed for approval by a formed committee of university affiliated individuals.
How do I promote my project?
Crowdfunding relies on personal networking—your best supporters love USC, but they REALLY love you and your project. You can use your personal, group, department or team email lists, Facebook pages, Twitter feeds, LinkedIn groups, etc. to promote your project.
Who gets the money we raise?
The money you raise—whether or not you hit your goal—goes directly into your group’s USC-designated fund.
What if a project is over-funded?
If a project raises more than its stated funding goal, the University will work with the project owner to determine how the surplus can be used to expand or enhance the project.
Can my employer match my gift?
Yes! Many employers have matching gift programs that could double or even triple your gift. Check here to see if your company has a matching gift policy.
Will I receive a receipt for my contribution?
Yes! You will receive a gift acknowledgement and tax receipt from the university.
Whom should I contact with questions about my contribution?
For general questions about your gift, please call 803-777-9109 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
What is USC’s tax ID number?
USC’s tax ID number is 57-6001153.
What if I have more questions?
Email Amanda Hamilton with the Office of Annual Giving at email@example.com.