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How to Raise Money Online for College Tuition

Published by Salvador Briggman. Find him on Twitter.

Right now, we’re in the middle of a huge crowdfunding boom! I’ve never seen so may people raising money for college expenses with crowdfunding.

It’s literally insane, and I want to help you get in on this gold rush.

I’ve already put together the book, Crowdfunding for Personal Expenses, which goes step-by-step through how to raise money on GoFundMe and other websites.

With this blog post, I hope to get you up to speed with some of the best practices out there, and other ways that you can raise money for your college tuition.

1. You Must Reach Out to Your Network

Did I just hear a collective sigh? Yes, you must be willing to reach out to your personal network.

The biggest mistake that most students make when they launch a campaign on GoFundMe or another crowdfunding website is that they don’t specifically ask people to donate to that campaign.

If you’re just posting this campaign as an update on Facebook and hoping that you’ll get donations, you’re about to be in for a rude awakening.

Most people will not give to your campaign. Also, due to the Facebook algorithm, many of your friends might not even see your message!

You have to be willing to reach out to your friends, family, and local network. Don’t beg, but simply share that this is a HUGE event in your life and that you would really appreciate even $25 worth of support. Then, make the ask… are they willing to help out?

2. If You Don’t Want to Reach Out, Then Do This.

I’m gonna be honest here. If you’re not willing to reach out to your own network, then I wouldn’t use crowdfunding as a way to raise money for college. Instead, there’s another option!

You can look into the website Upstart, which is one way to obtain a personal loan. Upstart will judge your FICO score, years of credit, education, and job history.

You’ll likely get a much better rate than other alternatives, so I recommend checking your rate, which won’t affect your credit score!

3. You Won’t Get Donations From Strangers (Unless…)

It’s pretty unlikely that you’re just going to magically receive donations from strangers. That being said, you can craft a story that’s more appealing to your local media networks. If your degree or educational path is going to benefit your local community, that’s an awesome story for a journalist.

Many of the campaigns that we’ve seen go viral on websites like GoFundMe tend to have a compelling story that resonates with readers as a part of a larger media story.

However, these campaigns are the outlier, not the norm. Most people are not just browsing GoFundMe or YouCaring and looking for campaigns to support.

4. Put Together a Moving Story

When I say, “put together a great story,” I don’t want you to fake emotions or manipulate your campaign visitors. Instead, I want you to dig deep inside yourself and ask… what will this education enable me to do? 

For me, I went to school, changed my major about five times, and ended up studying economics. Everything that I’ve learned has allowed me to educate more than 2 million people since the launch of this blog, along with thousands of podcast listeners.

I’ve made a small impact on the lives of my readers, listeners, and viewers as a result of my degree. This can all be tracked back to a very early age. You see, I was always drawn to reading, writing, and learning.

In fact, when I was in high school, I wrote my very first full fledged novel. Haha, it wasn’t that great, but I sure do love writing, and more importantly, teaching. I’ve always been trying to teach my friends new skills or things that I’m passionate about, like working out, drones, psychology, and more.

You need to share your passions and aspirations so that people can connect with the vision that you have for your life. How will YOU impact humanity?

This is the secret to getting friends of friends to back your campaign. They don’t know who you are, but they’ll be able to resonate with your story and the struggles that you’ve gone through. Maybe they’ll even be able to see a bit of themselves in you.

5. Take Crowdfunding Seriously

Don’t just throw up a page and hope for donations. Carefully take the time to plan how you’re going to hit your fundraising goal. You must take the process seriously.

Often times, when we don’t take things seriously, we don’t see results. If you’re not serious about going to the gym, you can’t expect to change your body. The same goes for work, business, and education.

There are a lot of ways out there to significantly improve your crowdfunding results. For example, you can use the Chrome app boomerang to help with your email outreach. I’ve put together a tutorial on this FREE app below.

I hate to break it to you, but you’re probably NOT the outlier. If you actually want to raise money for your college tuition, you’re going to have to put in the work.

To be honest, this is no different than applying to scholarship programs. No one is going to hand you anything in this world. No one owes you anything. You gotta get out there, toot your own horn, and persuade people why they should take a chance on YOU.

6. Crowdfunding Alternatives

If, after reading this article, you don’t think that crowdfunding is for you, then there are still a lot of alternatives out there for financing your college tuition. Here are a few resources that I’d recommend looking into:

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