Rent a beach house with Crowdtilt
Seven steps to get you to the beach.
1. Gauge interest.
It doesn’t hurt to get a headcount before you launch a campaign, that way you can gauge how many people are interested in going on the trip. Find a destination that is within the budget range you can reasonably raise with your Crowdtilt campaign. Take into account how many people are going and what kind of income they are working with.
2. When and where?
Begin your stay on a Sunday (the cheapest day for rentals) in early September (big discounts). Skip offers with weeklong minimums; many owners give competitive 3 or 4 day package deals. Try tofind an owner with a few houses; large chains may not negotiate price.
Before signing, always scout the house on Google’s street or satellite view. You’re going to want to know what it really looks like and what local hotspots are close. Property pictures can be very misleading sometimes so it’s best to cover all your bases and check it out.
3. Rent from a private individual
When you rent directly from the beach house owner, you have a better opportunity to negotiate than if you work with a property management organization. So it is usually to your advantage to rent from a private individual. Property management organizations often are unfamiliar with the property and unable to answer questions about the property location or condition. Fees for cleaning, pool heating, extra guests, and pets may set you back as much as $200. Negotiate your way out of these strings up front by suggesting that your trip may be an annual affair.
Beach houses or rentals come in varying sizes. You will want to make sure that you are getting enough space for your group to be comfortable. Also, inquire about the locations of grocery stores, shopping, nightspots, and dining.
Factor in how you’re going to get there. Outside of lodging, transportation expenses are usually one of the pricier items on a trip. Plan accordingly. Are you driving to Florida from Texas? Sometimes flying is more cost effective especially with gas prices skyrocketing.
Don’t sleep on getting a renting a travel bus. It eliminates the need for a designated driver and creates a traveling party atmosphere to and from your destination.
5. Create a campaign.
Once you’ve figured out the destination and how you’re going to get there your finally ready to launch your Crowdtilt campaign. Put the campaign up with the total amount needed and send the link to your vacation companions. Create a friendly campaign that includes a description of everything that the funds will cover for the trip. Make sure to include as much details as possible (travel accommodations, lodging, departure times) and how much everyone is expected to contribute. When handling the money for a group trip it’s best to always be transparent with the book keeping. It allows everyone to see what he or she is paying for and eliminates confusion. It’s always best to let people personally handle everything outside of lodging and transportation. After all, you don’t want to spend the entire vacation book keeping and paying for dinners.
Remember to give yourself at least 6 weeks between the end of the campaign and the departure date. This allows you enough time to receive the Crowdtilt check in the mail and make the necessary arrangements for lodging and travel.
(Note: Crowdtilt is still in Beta and you will need to e-mail us to launch a campaign: firstname.lastname@example.org)
6. During the stay.
Remember to observe the housekeeper’s rules. If you break them, you can kiss your deposit goodbye. Remember to stress that to your companions that it’s their money too. Always clean up the place before you depart, a lot of places will use the cleaning service bill as a way to eat your deposit. The key is to not give them any opportunity to take you for a ride.
7. Post-trip e-mail.
Always remember to thank everyone who came along on the trip. Send a post trip e-mail with a link to pictures and a few stories from the trip. If you plan on going on another group trip it’s best to leave everyone on a positive note.
Thanks to everyone who used Crowdtilt.com to purchase Silent Disco tickets. We don’t claim that guy with the pacifier…..he must have been a walk-up.
How to get people to pay you back using Crowdtilt.
Get your stacks back.
Getting friends to pay you back can be a gut wrenching cycle could go on for several months. As a result, the friendships have slowly turned bitter. What used to be a great relationship that included 24-hour marathon listening sessions of the entire Backstreet Boys catalog become an emotional burden. They start avoiding phone calls and stopped “liking” your witty facebook posts. Each month that the loan remains unpaid, you lose more hope on getting your money back. Consequently, feelings of anger and resentment towards your friends begins to consume you. One day soon you might find yourself stuffing bananas in tailpipes and “easy cheesing” someone’s paint job in a Walmart parking lot. Okay, that might be taking it a bit too far but the end result can be lifelong friendships dissolving over something as simple as money.
Crowdtilt can help put that all behind you. Here are three very important steps that can get your money back and relieve the strain on friendships by debt collecting.
1. Set up a campaign.
Create a campaign that details why people own you money.
Example: A few of your friends still owe you $30 each for the Backstreet Boys reunion concert? List the date of the concert, who else played, and maybe recall a funny story or memory from the concert to take the edge off. The reason is you want your friend’s initial reaction to be “oh yeah, that was really fun, I need to pay her back” and not “oh crap, she wants her money right now.”
Make sure to say that the campaign is angled as a friendly and convenient reminder in case they had “forgotten” that they still owe you. (Not likely, Nick Carter was on fire) Be very descriptive about what you paid for and why they owe you the money. People will be less likely to argue over a debt if you’ve covered all your bases and listed them out. It also gives you another chance to go over your expenses and make sure there isn’t anything you missed. (Remember that BSB pillow case that Cindy just had to have.)
2. Use the required payment option.
Set the required amount to the dollar amount that the person(s) owe you. That way you can be sure that they won’t “accidentally” put in the wrong amount.
“I typed in 3 dollars instead on 30? My bad! LOL”
3. Set a strict deadline
Set a deadline (2-3 days) close enough so they don’t put it on the back-burner and come back later. You’d be surprised how many people will forget come back and pay before the deadline. The most active times during the campaign happen at the beginning and end. Make sure to communicate that the window here is very short to create a sense of urgency.
4. Send it out.
Make sure to be very clear about what the link is pertaining to and why you need the money. Don’t be condescending or call people out. This is going to be seen by their social networks so be courteous.
Good example: Hey guys, just wanted to let you know I set up a Crowdtilt campaign so you can pay me back for the ubertastic BSB concert without having to swing by my house. It expires in 2 days so please hurry!
Bad example: Cindy, Brittany, and Brooke. Holy cheeseballs, I still can’t believe you haven’t paid me back. OMG, we saw A.J. Mclean shirtless together and now you won’t even return my calls. I need my greenbacks stat!!!! I know where you live.
Crowdtilt can be used as an online I.O.U.
It’s basically a way to transform Crowdtilt into an online invoice system. It allows Cindy to see that Brittany and Brooke have already paid you back and will motivate her into action. Like dominoes, once the first one starts falling the rest topple into place.
It doesn’t have to be for an event. If you covered someone’s lunch one day and know you won’t see that person for a month or two, throw up a campaign. It’s quick, easy, and most importantly saves gas money.
Silent Disco brings the noise.
A new musical movement is taking the nation’s dance floors by storm - the sound of silence.
Imagine being at one of the hottest nightclubs in town on a Saturday night and the place is filled to capacity. The dance floor is packed with people swaying and grinding to the beat but something is slightly different, there is no audible music. This is the type of experience that only the Silent Disco can provide.
Rather than using a traditional speaker system, music is broadcast via a FM-transmitter with the signal being picked up by wireless headphone receivers worn by everyone in the crowd. It lets the attendee hear the DJ in crystal clear audio rather than getting the sound degraded by a crappy PA system or poor building acoustics. Those without the headphones hear no music, giving the effect of a room full of people dancing to nothing. To add to the fun disco-goers may tune in to two or more music channels created by competing DJs, creating the delicious sight of half an audience head banging to some fast techno while the other half gets down to some slow jams. Silent discos are also becoming increasing popular with city officials as they allow dancing to continue past noise curfews. Did I mention that you could now have a conversation with somebody at a club without having to scream two inches from their ear? It’s one of the many reasons these “silent clubs” are becoming very popular.
Check it out Dallas, we’ve got a campaign going for one right now on Friday, July 22nd at the Green Elephant. The first 100 tickets are $15 and then the price gets bumped to $21. Hurry up!
Wanna read more about the silent disco experience?
Top 10 ways to tilt your campaign
Here are a few quick tips on how to get your Crowdtilt campaign started off on the right foot.
1. Never stop promoting the campaign.
Send e-mail, facebook updates, or tweets to your friends and family. One of the single most important tips for an online campaign is to be persistent. While some people will contribute the first time you ask them, the reality is that it will take at least 2-3 friendly reminders before the majority of your friends and family open up their wallets for you. Campaign pages who keep their donor base engaged with frequent updates tend to be the most successful.
Keep in mind this doesn’t mean peppering people with links. (They will ignore it after a while) A well-timed and placed tweet, facebook post, or e-mail will go a long way. Here is a great guide to limit how to limit your outreach without becoming overbearing on your friend’s social feeds.
Tweets: 4-5 times a week.
Facebook posts: 1-3 times a week.
E-mails: 3-4 per duration of campaign
Some tips on generating traffic on social networks:
- The three biggest usage spikes tend to occur on weekdays at 11:00 a.m., 3:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. ET.
- The biggest spike occurs at 3:00 p.m. ET on weekdays.
- Weekday usage is pretty steady, however Wednesday at 3:00 pm ET is consistently the busiest period.
- Although most posts and comments appear around 3:00 p.m. ET, posts published in the morning tend to perform better than those published in the afternoon.
- Fans are less active on Sunday compared to all other days of the week.
Remember: The campaign’s chance of success is directly related to the amount of work and promotion the campaign administrator is willing to put forth.
2. Promote Tactically.
While we recommend telling everyone you know about your campaign page, before you send out mass e-mails to everyone in the contact book, first send out e-mails to your closest family and friends. This is one of the most important tips for success. The reason you want to do this is because your inner circle of friends and family will be the most generous and easiest to recruit to help spread the momentum for your campaign by setting the tone for subsequent contributors. For instance, if your first four contributors each give you $75, future contributors will view this as the appropriate contribution size and will be more likely to give this or a similar amount as well. You can also manually set the donation amount in the campaign creation settings.
3. Start with a modest goal.
One of the keys to a successful Crowdtilt campaign is building momentum. Your friends and family will be more inclined to give if they think their contribution will help you reach your goal. By setting a modest tilt goal for the campaign and quickly reaching fundraising milestones like 10% and 25% of your goal you can build a lot of momentum and get your donors excited about the campaign. On the other hand, if you set your goal too high, some people will be discouraged from contribution because they’ll view your goal as unattainable and will feel like their $25 or $50 bucks won’t really make a difference.
4. Offer your contributors a chance to get something in return.
A great way to get people to contribute is by offering them a raffle prize. Example: When you e-mail your contacts you might include that you will be raffling off a $50 gift card to Home Depot [or whatever prize you choose] to the first 20 people to donate. This creates extra motivation for those people who are on the fence about donating. A well-run raffle with the right grand prize can raise incredible amounts of money for campaign. Most groups underestimate how much money a raffle can raise. Your choice of prize or prizes should vary depending on your financial goal, the size of your potential market, and how many volunteers you have to sell tickets.
Remember, bigger prizes mean more tickets must be sold to turn a profit, but they also mean substantially higher profits. Design your raffle prize offerings to match your community’s tastes.
The most successful raffles generally have between one and four prizes. When you decide on the selling price of your raffle tickets, keep in mind the market value of the raffle prizes. For high-end prizes ($800+) it is not uncommon to see prices on the raffle tickets of $6 or more.
Selling raffle tickets is really easy on Crowdtilt. Set up a campaign that has predetermined amount equal to the price of a raffle ticket. Contributors will also be able to purchase multiple tickets at once. The campaign administrator will be able to track who bought tickets and how many were purchased for the drawing. It brings a level of excitement and anticipation to the deadline from the contributors.
5. Get your story in the media.
The local paper will usually be more than happy to write about your campaign if it benefits the community in some fashion. The more exposure you get, the better your campaign will do especially if it’s a local campaign on the local news. It’s no secret that people like to be apart of something that is high profile within the community.
6. Make your campaign go viral.
The most successful fundraising campaigns are the ones that go “viral” on the Internet. The results can be astonishing with hundreds of people making contributions across the country and raising thousands of dollars for a cause. Although not every campaign will go viral, here are some tips to help get you there:
- Ask friends and family to spread the word. When you send out your e-mail make sure to ask your contacts to share your campaign with their friend’s co-workers.
- Create a 24-hour Facebook “Wallflower” Campaign where everyone donates their status message for one day to direct the participant’s networks to contribute to the cause.
- Make sure to get off to a good start with a big donation off the bat (close friends and family can help). This will give you some quick momentum to get people excited about your campaign.
7. Thank your contributors.
When you create your campaign page, you can draft a thank you message that automatically goes out whenever someone makes a contribution. You can also send personalized thank you e-mails to your donors from their profile pages. Thanking each contributor individually is essential if you plan to fundraise again in the future and hope to ask the same people.
8. Create a blog about the campaign.
This will give the campaign a human face and a voice (yours) as well as providing an outlet to publish updates, stories, and highlight the people behind the campaign. It’s a great resource that builds credibility and enthusiasm about your campaign. Once the information gets rolling it will get picked up and re-blogged by other sources. We recommend tumblr.com for functionality and sharing capabilities.
Tumblr tip: Run a search for like-minded blogs to start following. If you follow a blog they will most likely start following you back. If you have good content then you are more likely to get your posts re-blogged.
9. Create an attractive campaign page
Personalize your fundraising page as much as possible with a heartfelt description and a striking photo.
The campaigns that do the best are the ones who really make an effort to tell their stories or are super descriptive about what the funds will be used for. Explain to your contributors what you are raising money for and why it is so important to you. If your friends and family see that you are passionate about the campaign, they are more likely to give and give generously.
Remember, a picture is worth a thousand words so make it count. Also remember you must choose a picture that will also be attractive and striking in thumbnail size from the search page.
A good rule of thumb is to ask yourself whether you would click on a link if you were scanning the page. Get advice from others as well. The larger a focus group you have the better shot you have at nailing down a picture that will get noticed.
10. Have Fun!
It’s always important to remember to have fun. Getting a campaign tilted can be hard work but it can also be very fun and if you’re not enthusiast about it will tough to fake. It should be a fun activity and if you’re having fun with it, the positive emotions become contagious and will make people want to contribute.
Posted by: G.Case
Heroes on the Water
In honor of Memorial Day we wanted to highlight a really cool campaign on Crowdtilt that improves the lives of former service men and women. It’s a very interesting concept that helps wounded warriors relax, rehabilitate and reintegrate into society through kayak fishing and the outdoors. Heroes on the Water has become a hit with new chapters popping up all over the nation.
Here is the link to their campaign: http://bit.ly/jeH3rG
Here is some literature from their site:
Today’s Warriors are exposed to hostile fire and sustained combat stress 3-6x longer than their fathers and grandfathers endured. During World War II, the average time spent in the combat zone was 7 months. During the Vietnam War the average was 15 months, whereas during the Global War on Terror, the average time a warrior spends in combat is 45 months.
The good news is that modern technology helps our troops survive wounds that were fatal in prior wars. However, many of the wounds are invisible: 20% of Iraq and Afghanistan Vets show signs of Post- Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) or depression.
From 2003 to the present time (2010), there have been 5,773 U.S armed forces deaths and 31,902 ‘visible’ wounded from hostile fire, IED amputations, burns and other injuries.* In addition, it is estimated that there are 300,000 suffering with PTSD and 320,000 with Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBI). Reports indicate that the numbers of injured military personnel is increasing by 50 per month since mid-2008.**
Alarmingly, there are 950 suicide attempts each month by veterans who are receiving some type of treatment from the Veterans Affairs Department with an average of 18 veterans committing suicide each day. ***
Heroes on the Water’s mission is to help wounded warriors relax, rehabilitate and reintegrate into society through kayak fishing and the outdoors. Over the past three years of taking a few thousand men and women of all branches of the armed services out kayak fishing, we have learned firsthand the ‘triple therapy’ of kayak fishing – physical with paddling and fishing, occupational in learning new skills and a sport they can do for life, and mental in the relaxation and freedom out on the water. Their words say it best…
“You have given us a new sport that we can do with our injuries. Best of all, I really yearn for a morning in the woods with my bike or a long run down our country road… those thoughts have been replaced by talk of new fishing tackle, rods, water craft, and terrain. You have no idea how mentally and physically healing your program is. Thank you!! Thank you for your time, your expertise, your passion, and your dedication to the military in which you served. We feel blessed!! From a wounded Army Captain and participant in HOW
If you know someone that has served and would be interested in joining send them this link: http://heroesonthewater.org/get-involved/become-a-member
Did you win the iPad 2? Check it out! Stay put because we’ll have some more giveaways and sweet hook-ups for our followers in the future.
Win a free iPad 2!
Follow us, win an iPad. Re-blog to boost chances!
You will be entered to win a brand new iPad 2 for following us on Tumblr. Your chances will double if you re-blog this post. We will be coming out of Beta soon and want to thank everyone that that has helped us get this far. The drawing will be held on May 31st and we will be live streaming the event so jump on board before it’s too late!
Working in 3/4 time.
We finally got an electric drum kit up to the office last Friday. We work really hard at Crowdtilt but believe it or not we play even harder. (Cliché alert!) Did you know that by playing a Phil Collins “In the Air Tonight” drum solo 2-3 times a week can increase office production by 85%? Okay, we just made that up but it really does help relieve some stress banging on these digital skins. There are also plans for throwing up a campaign on our website to acquire some glow sticks so one of our programmers can cut out the lights and do interpretive dance moves to the wicked beats this thing throws down. There is a strong chance an angry medicine man resides in his family tree somewhere. If you don’t have a drum kit and needs some sick beats, check out White Panda at the Green Elephant on May 12th.
If you happen to drive by the Crowdtilt offices in Dallas and see fantastical light movements passing by the window please don’t call the police. It just means we are taking a drum break. Booyah! I hope that last one doesn’t get me fired.
(Last) Post by G.Case