Starting your first project

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Setting up a project on Made Open is really straight forward. It’s split into three steps: Adding project details (name, description etc), Setting the project goals (telling people what you need) and project approval.

Once you have clicked on the ‘start a project’ button, you can edit it as much as you like and take as long as you need to get it right before putting it live.

The video tutorial is coming online soon guys (honest) but, in the meantime, here’s a step by step guide to projects. We’ve also created an example project that can be seen here. This will give you a quick understanding of what should go where and how it will look.

Step 1 | Project details:
Project Name: This is a 100 character summary of your project and will be the first thing people read about your project. The job of the summary is to get people to visit your project page where they can get more information. Consider that this will be the first thing people read when you share a link over social media.

Project URL: Think of this as your project or campaign title. It is what people will type in after to get to your project. The important thing is to come up with something short and memorable.

Add an image: An image will help your project stand out when seen in the activity stream and when shared through social media. Take your own or find something relevant online. Here are some useful places to find good images.

Add a video: A video is a hugely powerful feature to have on your project. Across crowdfunding, it’s a well-known fact that videos dramatically improve the chances of success. Have a look at our blog on creating a video for useful resources, tips and advice.

Add more information: This is a 300-character description that will add context to your project. After reading this description, a person should know exactly what the project is for.

Choose theme: Themes are used to help other users find projects they are interested in. Adding themes helps categorise your project and match it with potential supporters.

Add your story: Your story is where you add the meat to the project, explaining how you are going to achieve your goals, who you are and what you are going to do with their materials, time or money. Here is an example of what it should look like.

Project duration: Achieving your project aims may depend on how long you choose to give yourself to reach your chosen goals. Most projects will want to use the full 10 weeks to give them more time to reach their goals, but some projects will need to turn their pledges around quickly, so may choose a shorter time scale.

Project location: Project location is only for projects that are based around a certain place, so that the local community can find and support that project. For example a project looking for volunteers for a local beach clean would add a location, but a project to raise money for a healthy recipe book (or other example) might not be specific to a location.


Step two | Requirements:

Pledge targets

Regardless of what you need people to give to your project, be it time, money or materials you will have to set a target that you need to meet. If you don’t meet your target in your chosen time frame you won’t get anything. If you are asking for more than one type of resource i.e. you need volunteers and money your pledge targets will be merged into one target, so if you ask for £10 and 10 volunteers you have a total pledge target of 20. This means that there is a bit of flexibility so if you manage to get more than you ask for in one and slightly miss out on another you can still get the stuff you need to go ahead with your project. So in our example with £10 and 10 volunteers if the project raised £30 but only 9 volunteers it would still be a success as it has a total pledge figure of 39.

Do you need volunteers?

If your project needs volunteers, you can set tasks requiring certain skill sets or outlining certain roles. The process is straight forward; create a task that you need volunteers to do, give it a name, add the number of volunteers you need and a description> You can add as many tasks as you need. If you have more than two tasks, think about adding a ‘I’ll do anything’ task so people who don’t know or don’t mind what they do can still pledge their time to your project.

At this point you may wish to revisit you story section in the previous step to make sure you have included enough information about volunteering.

Do you need materials?

The form for materials is very similar to the form for volunteers. You can an item you need donating, give it a name, describe the number of items you need and add a description. You can add as many items as you wish, all item totals are added together to create an overall materials target ,which becomes part of your total pledge target.

Do you need money?

Made Open uses a payment system called Stripe. Stripe is an independent service that will collect money from users once a project is successfully completed and transfer to your project account. For this to happen, you as a project lead need to set up a Stripe Account. This is a simple sign up process that requires a few details about you and your chosen bank account into which project funds will be placed. For more information about stripe see our FAQ section.


Step 3 | Approval

Clicking ‘submit’ will send your project to a member of the Made Open team, who will look at the project to check it is suitable for Made Open. If your project is approved, you will receive a notification telling you that your project is now live. The important thing when you get the green light is to start sharing your project across social media and any other media channels.

If your project is rejected we will contact you to tell you why, it might be as small as we have noticed a few typos, or that we feel you need to add some more information to help your project be a success. Further instruction will be included in the email but for the time being you can find out more in our FAQ section.