Technorati Exclusive - The Jump Start City Crowdfunding Community
"With venture-capital funds drying up, young tech companies are getting desperate for new sources of cash."
That was the opening statement made in an article fresh off the press in today's Wall Street Journal Market Watch. Crowdfunding is the new playing field that allows idea people to leverage today's powerful social communication channels to pitch their ideas and funding needs to the general public. Project's otherwise overlooked by angels, VCs, and banks have the opportunity for greater fund-to-launch opportunities through crowdsourced efforts.
Does it work? Well, you know those 3-D printers that have become commonplace predictions for the future of micro-manufacturing capability? Some of the largest are the direct product of crowdfunding from companies.
The largest players in the space are sites like Kickstarter and Indiegogo, but competition is emerging, each seeking to address different ways to improve the business model. Pairing funding with expert manufacturing, for example, is the focus of our earlier profiled provider CrowdSupply. And many others specialize in niche products or communities.
But Jump Start City, not even yet public, has generated a lot of buzz and interest as of late. While gearing up for the launch of its new platform, the company's co-founder Mark Baker provided us with an exclusive preview of what he and his team are building.
So What's Different About Jump Start City?
Jump Start City (JSC) is unique in that it's backer focused and intentionally creating a community where crowdfunding enthusiasts can hang out (and even get paid for their participation). In this way, it's truly social. “We have built a platform that is truly for the backers," Baker explains. "The crowd is what makes crowdfunding work, so we've setup a community that welcomes them to take part in many different activities.
The site is designed for the community members and gives those who love crowdfunding a place not only to find and back exciting projects, but also to hang out and rub shoulders with others who have the same passion they do. "There is a hunger for this by those who are crowdfunding enthusiasts and it is a need that is simply not being met," Baker explains. In this way, JSC has set out to increase the engagement of investors beyond just sharing wallets. The platform is aimed at helping the investors engage in several fun and meaningful social activities, with one another and project innovators, and incentivizing their involvement along the way.Continued on the next page