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Free crowdfunding training available to Idaho businesses impacted by COVID-19

Idaho businesses looking to raise some cash to fund their business during the pandemic have a new resource.

Through a partnership between Crowdfund Better and the Idaho Women’s Business Center, any business can receive free training on how to raise funds to launch a new business or keep an existing one afloat. Through the Crowdfund Idaho partnership, any Idaho business affected by COVID-19 can receive up to $2,000 in virtual training on marketing, building a strong business and raising funds to make sure a campaign is successful through Crowdfund Better.

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East Director of the Idaho Women’s Business Center Sayrd Iverson said her organization saw many small businesses struggling after the pandemic and looking to raise funds through investors, GoFundMe or other sources. Many businesses either didn’t receive any government relief or had exhausted it as the pandemic continues to drag on.

To help them be successful in a time when cash strapped businesses most likely can’t afford in-depth training on crowdfunding, Iverson dedicated her organization’s CARES Act funds toward the partnership. Any business, regardless of if a woman owns it, can apply. The training is also available in Spanish.

“We’re using the money we were given to make sure that small businesses across Idaho gets the funding they deserve, regardless of their credit score,” she said. “There are so many reasons why they haven’t gotten funding through the pandemic, but I want them to be supported and get help financially through the Idaho Women’s Business Center. This is our way of bridging that gap.”

Set up for success

Crowdfund Better CEO Kathleen Minogue founded the company after she saw a lack of resources for women, minorities or rural businesses looking to launch businesses through crowdfunding. She said her goal is to educate businesses on the intricacies of crowdfunding and provide personalized help for businesses to make sure they can have a successful campaign.

Minogue said this process includes multiple steps including making sure business owners have a business entity set up, help them create financial projections, build a reward system for donors and other training before heading right into hoping for supporters. Crowdfund Idaho also doesn’t have a platform fee, like some other crowdfunding services.

“Over 50% of campaigns don’t reach 10% of their goal, but using Crowdfund Better process, our clients see significantly higher success rates and often exceed their goals and it’s because we have those middle steps,” she said. “They don’t go straight to posting their campaign. We’re being very strategic and making sure it’s going to serve that business, but also building the business capacity.”

There are no limits to how many businesses can receive the free training, Iverson said. She said her organization is exploring other options to keep the partnership going even after the CARES Act funds run out.

You can find more information here.

Margaret Carmel - BoiseDev reporter
Margaret Carmel is a BoiseDev reporter focused on the City of Boise, housing, homelessness and growth. Contact her at margaret@boisedev.com or by phone at (757)705-8066.

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