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Fundraising 101: Tips from the Team

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Written by: Juanna Zhai, Azeem Khan, Maxwell Kanter, Ben West, Boris Dyakov

Written by: Juanna Zhai, Azeem Khan, Maxwell Kanter, Ben West, Boris Dyakov

To successfully fund a grants round, enough capital is needed to allocate towards the grantees. Although Gitcoin has successfully raised funds for numerous causes on a quarterly basis, we realize that by decentralizing our funding service, others can be newer to raising funds, and may experience difficulty getting started. Here are some lightweight tips from the Gitcoin team on how to approach partnering for your own funding rounds!

In this report, we outline a comprehensive strategy for successfully raising funds for a grants round, based on Gitcoin's experience and expertise. The strategy focuses on developing a compelling narrative, preparing professional documentation, seeking value-aligned partners, understanding stakeholders' motivations, being patient with relationships, building a good reputation, and employing effective fundraising techniques. By following these guidelines, individuals and organizations can increase their chances of securing funding for their initiatives and fostering long-lasting, fruitful partnerships.

1. Crafting a Compelling Narrative:

To persuade potential partners to contribute capital, you must create a powerful narrative that demonstrates why your cause deserves funding over countless other options. This narrative should emphasize the potential impact and unique value proposition of the initiative and convincingly address why you are best suited to execute the project.

2. Preparing Professional Documentation:

Clear and well-structured documents are essential for showcasing your seriousness and professionalism. These materials serve as your sales deck and will help potential partners determine whether to invest in the proposed idea. Invest time in developing comprehensive and polished documents that clearly outline the initiative's objectives and strategies.

3. Identifying Value-Aligned Partners:

Leverage various channels such as Twitter, LinkedIn, Discord, Telegram, in-person meetups, and conferences to identify partners who share similar values and goals. Collaborative communities like Kernel and JokeDAO provide engaging opportunities to connect with others in the space and establish meaningful relationships.

4. Understanding Stakeholders' Motivations:

Ensure that your proposal addresses the "why" behind your potential partners' interests in supporting your cause. Highlight the ways in which funding your project can benefit their own initiatives or advance their strategic objectives.

5. Fostering Long-Term Relationships:

Recognize the importance of being patient with relationships and understanding the market conditions and business situations of potential partners. Avoid aggressively pursuing leads, as this can strain potential partnerships. Instead, focus on building goodwill and nurturing relationships, which can lead to more fruitful collaboration in the future.

6. Building a Strong Reputation:

Establishing a positive reputation is crucial for expanding your network and attracting support. Engage in action-oriented activities such as contributing to public discourse, educating others, collaborating with aligned projects, and sponsoring events and causes. These efforts will help build credibility and increase the likelihood of securing funding.

7. Effective Fundraising Techniques:

When it comes to asking for funds, there is no substitute for a direct approach. Follow these best practices for successful fundraising:

  • Determine the amount of funding required and the goals it will help achieve.
  • Explain why the potential partner is well-suited to support the initiative.
  • Communicate the specific benefits and importance of the project for the potential partner.
  • Demonstrate your organization's ability to be a responsible steward of their funds.
  • Be direct in asking for financial support.
  • Revise your pitch as needed and be persistent in your efforts.

By adhering to these guidelines, you can improve your chances of successfully funding a grants round and creating lasting, beneficial partnerships with value-aligned stakeholders.

If you’re serious about funding a cause, activating your community, or building for your ecosystem using Gitcoin’s quadratic funding mechanism, check if you meet our Minimum Viable Round Requirements first!

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