The Money is Closer Than You Might Think
Did you know that the number one coin in our office was funded by a Kickstarter campaign? Raising money for the creation of future card packs and general art creation, the Reckless Deck campaign got 1,362 backers to pledge $68,196. Their initial goal was to raise $7,500, and, as you can see, they beat that by quite a bit. As a result, they took some of that excess money and poured it into a challenge coin project they could use to say thank you to their fans and the donors who helped them achieve such an amazing feat.
Currently, the Diabolis coin is for sale on the Reckless Deck website. The funds raised by those sales can always be put towards the order of future coins should their stock run low. These examples from Reckless Deck merely scratch the surface of the different ways people have thought of to fund their challenge coin orders. If you’re considering ordering challenge coins, but you’re worried about the collective cost of it all, consider the different ways crowdfunding can work for you.
Follow the Money
One of the most interesting things about the financing of challenge coin orders is how only certain orders are ever questioned or looked at in terms of the source of the money. When the Miami Dade Police Department collects money from its officers to place an order for coins which will then be used to raise funds not to pay for their production, but to donate in favor of breast cancer research or to raise autism awareness, no one really thinks to question where the money for the order comes from.
The truth of the matter is that the uses to which these coins are placed, and the reasons behind needing them are far superior to the final price tag of the order. When a family pulls together to get a collection of coins minted to commemorate the life of a loved one that was tragically cut short, how much time is spent worrying about where the money came from?
Whether to honor a fallen comrade or to mark inclusion in a special group, challenge coins are often created for sentimental or otherwise important and meaningful reasons. They aren’t tokens or trinkets a person collects at Mardi Gras or in a souvenir shop. As symbols of something bigger and more important than themselves, the coins matter in a very unique and important way.
The importance of the coins applies whether they’re ordered by a politician running for re-election or a military unit. When viewed through that lens, how the coins get funded shouldn’t be anyone’s concern beyond the customer’s. And if you’re a customer looking for easy funding practices, crowdfunding will always be an easy way to go.
Old School Crowdfunding
Some Millennials might be surprised to learn that crowdfunding has existed for a lot longer than Kickstarter and GoFundMe. It’s actually one of the most popular options for paying for a challenge coin order.
For most groups, this takes on the simple form of collecting money from the people who will be receiving the coins. When designing a coin for a group or a unit, as opposed to one that’s likely to be distributed to the public, it’s easy to get an overall price of the order, or a general price per coin, and have everyone chip in a fair share to get the order processed. This strategy has the added effect of allowing the coin design to be agreed upon by everyone involved.
In the end, the truth is that a majority of our coin orders are funded in exactly this fashion. Outside of the corporate world, where coins are funded by profits and certain discretionary funds, personal crowdfunding is generally the way to go. We see this strategy employed often by police offices, government agencies and military units well before any of them turn to taxpayer dollars to get their coins.
Crowdfunding through the online platforms we have in place today is the sort of thing that worked well for Reckless Deck because they were looking to sell something that a lot of people would get a considerable use out of. But if you’re only looking to pass out coins to the people in your immediate group, looking to the public to foot the bill isn’t likely to be as helpful. However, turning to that group and spreading the expense out a bit is a very useful strategy. And if you come across a coin that was ordered by a military or government agency, consider the very real possibility that the coins were funded by the people carrying them before jumping to the conclusion that you’re looking at your tax dollars being wasted.