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What is your "Mud Pie Kitchen" Idea?

What is your "Mud Pie Kitchen" Idea?

One of the secrets of creating a successful crowdfunding project is to capture the hearts and minds of potential donors. Certainly, the project needs to fill a community need but if you get the right thinkers in the room you can add a layer of creativity that will make the process and outcome more fun for community and donors alike.

For instance...

Let's say your town wants to build a sidewalk from the nursing home to the nearby pond. It's a great idea but what kind of unusual benches could be built out of local resources and placed along the trail or what could be embedded in the sidewalk that relates to the town's history?

What if your online campaign is to fund an LED sign. Will alumni who have moved away or donors who barely know your town kick in money for a commercial sign? Maybe. Your job is to help them want to give. Could you decorate the metal poles that hold the LED sign with some kind of artsy bling?  How could you convert a project that engenders little emotion into something that will tickle their fancy?

Do you think people would donate to make a Mud Pie Kitchen? Just think of the fun the neighborhood kids could have. My dad and brother helped me make a Treehouse Mud Pie Kitchen for my nieces. It became the focal point for farm vacations. Not only did the kids create amazing dishes, but forever memories, too.

What will be your "Mud Pie Kitchen" idea, the one that will grab people's attention and inspire them to give or volunteer?

Keep tweaking that idea until you get it just right. It'll be worth the effort.



(Marci Penner is the director of the We Kan! Network and the Kansas Sampler Foundation)..