Michiel: “Heroes & Friends encourages heroism by building the best crowdsourcing platform where your support requests travel fast and far through your friends’ networks. You can source money, skills, and stuff, anything to get your project going, fast! We revolutionize development aid by matching supply and demand directly. There’s no middle-man, no fundraising fees, no expensive overhead, only a direct relationship between heroes and friends. Heroes ask for what they need and our tool helps them find it.”
With Heroes & Friends, you can crowdsource money, skills, stuff, anything to get your project going, fast.
What problem are you trying to solve?
Transparency problem: There’s a lack of transparency in the development sector because supporters often feel disregarded once they have made a contribution due to the fact that they receive insufficient information directly from the beneficiary. This led to the fact that contributors don’t feel the impact of their contribution causing a significant decrease in recurring contributors.
Inefficiency problem: In the development sector organizations have difficulties raising sufficient funds which are partly caused due to the lack of transparency. To raise more funds they use direct dialogue or crowdfunding platforms, which take commission fees of 5% – 15% or more. Besides, direct dialogue organization uses aggressive sales techniques which can be perceived as extremely unpleasant for the prospect.
Engagement problem: Reaching enough people is hard because you’re competing with news, media and commercial companies. That’s why you need different ways of reaching the crowd with your message.
What is your solution to this problem?
Trust & transparency: We built an environment of trust because people have profiles and are in a direct relationship with the beneficiary. We foster transparency because of a storytelling timeline where projects share their mission, goals, budget, and results. This is continuously being updated because every update is a way to attract new support from the crowd.
Efficiency: At Heroes & Friends, there’s a 0% platform fee. We connect heroes and friends directly without charging costs. Friends can support with skills and stuff directly. There has been more than 90 in kind donations so far, saving tens of thousands of Euros in cash or hundreds of people donating. An additional benefit is that it increases trust and transparency with the supporters.
Engagement: Instead of paid advertisements Heroes & Friends allows you to get ambassadors who share messages automatically on their social media. Word-of-mouth is highly trustworthy and contagious and that’s why there’s a click rate of 10%.
Why are you going to win The Spindle Award for Best Innovation?
We bring the best of all words together because we built the best software for people to receive and give any form of support with an attached business model which is aligned with all parties involved. Our technology is highly scalable because of a decentralized setup and due to its social reasons, anyone with the internet and a phone can start gathering support.
Heroes & Friends is useful for anyone working on the SDGs: NGOs, civil movements, individual initiatives, and social entrepreneurs.