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I am reading a brilliant book called The Beermat Entrepreneur by Mike Southon & Chris West. It was recommended to me by Chris Ingram as a must-read. Anyone who is starting their own business should swot up. I guess I am a ‘social’ entrepreneur so it does apply to me.
My beermat plan should have 3 things on it:
- Elevator Pitch. I don’t remember what I said in the Elevator to Deborah Meaden, but it was certainly longer than 2 sentences… needs some work.
- Mentor. I need to find a mentor with years of experience who gets the idea, gives us good advice and can connect us to high value donors. This is very high up on our to-do list.
- Our first High Value Donor. We need one person to believe in and endorse this project and give us financial backing. If you have any suggestions of who we should pitch to send us an email.
Next week we have our Trustee Meeting to sign off the Business Plan and the Financials.
It is going to be a very long meeting.
Today we signed off our logo. It is absolutely brilliant. It was designed for free by Bruno at Endemol GFX and Andrew (Head of Creative, Endemol Digital). We have spent the last few months going through the design process. They’re used to designing TV titles and graphics to very tight specifications, so my brief of “A logo which doesn’t look too charity, nor too corporate, and feels warm and engaging, but not too childlike” was an interesting one, to say the least.
Everyone is really pleased with the final product. Here are some of the sites that provided inspiration…homemade, collaborative, non-glossy, non-corporate, ingenious, interactive, fun…
Michelle and I have been writing our Fundraising Strategy and raising the money is going to be a ‘challenge’ to say the least.
We spoke to a professional fundraiser who told us we had a mission on our hands – costly Christmas and New Year are coming up (bad timing) and the global economic crisis means most of us have less money in our pockets (very bad timing). However, John Grain’s blog made us feel a bit better – in bad times, people need to have some fun – and that is exactly what we plan to do.
Giving us your hard earned money is just the beginning of our journey- we don’t want you to just invest your money, we want you to invest yourself.
We will collaborate to raise the money as a community, (See micropatronage) and together create a home to save and give babies a happy life. Through our website, we will connect you to the charity from Day Zero, so you can chart the difference your money is making.
Our fundraising strategy includes approaching High Value Donors, community fundraising, individual giving, events, campaigns and companies. We want to harness the power of our interconnected digital world and make use of those web 2.0 tools available to us (for free) to invite supporters and communities of people to truly become part of our cause.
Last night we put on the inaugural ‘Undress For Uganda‘ event – and it was a huge success. See for yourself on our Flickr album. Thanks to everyone who came along – we raised a truly impressive £713.00 and it was all down to the sterling efforts of our wonderful Community Fundraising Team and the village of Rotherfield.
Our worldwide ‘Undress for Uganda’ fundraising target for is a whopping £99,000, so we’d would love Supporters to put on their own evenings. If you like the sound of it send my Mum an email and she’ll ping back a “how to” pack.
Now all we need to do is think of a community fundraising event for the boys. Men don’t generally tend to swap clothes (but we won’t mind if you want to!), so get your thinking caps and send us your ideas.
Remember – take photos and a video if possible to upload on our Flickr Group – or join our group on YouTube. If we all collaborate, not only can everyone have a fun night – and a cheap new wardrobe – we’ll also get a warm fuzzyy feeling in our hearts. We also need to think of a community fundraising event for the boys. Men don’t generally tend to swap clothes (but we don’t mind if you want to) so get your thinking caps and send us your ideas.
Time and expertise is as vital to this project as money, and people’s generosity has been overwhelming. If I tried to put a price on the amount of time they’ve given up to help out, I think it would come to around £150,000 so far – a huge sum of money.
I am lucky to have made lots of TV contact throughout my career and everyone in my industry has supported me. I will also be indebted forever to my friends and family, who have been buying me food and putting a roof over my head since I quit television in March.
I went out to Zambia and Uganda in March for 8 weeks, and since then I have been working around the clock trying to get this project off the ground. I have probably put in over 2000 hours setting up this project and this is just the beginning… But with everyone behind me, I know we will succeed.