If you have a generous heart and more spare time than money Raise5.com is a way for you to monetize your expertise on behalf of a favored charity, $5 at a time.
Here’s how it works: you post a small service or task you are willing to perform for $5. These are services provided online or over the phone. So no babysitting services or (yuck!) ‘massages.’ (The video at the left is their appeal for your vote in Virgin Unite's 'Screw Business as Usual,' promotion.)
‘Mike’ offers to teach you five phrases in Mandarin, for instance. ‘Autumn’ will pray on your behalf and sing a song. ‘Kaleigh’ will edit your blog post.
$4 of the total goes to the charity of choice for the service provider, Raise5.com peels off $1 for itself. In turn, the website says, $0.45 of that $1 goes to PayPal. The rest goes to operations and costs. I hope that doesn’t sound critical because I truly don’t begrudge them the $1.
It’s crowdsourcing but it ain’t exactly Amazon's Mechanical Turk, where each of the tasks above would probably earn the provider $0.50 at the most.
Raise5.com was founded by four young Torontonians at Startup Weekend Toronto who are “passionate about making the world a better place.”
The basic business model is similar to Fiverr.com, except that Raise5.com is about benefiting the causes rather than service provider. Since Raise5.com literally started in February of this year, Fiverr.com has a 2-year head start and is a good deal more polished.
Hassan Hassan, one of Raise5.com’s founders, told blogger Dan Verhaeghe that Raise5.com is explicitly going after the youth market, since kids are more likely to have time and talent than money to donate.
Since teens can be so challenging to market to, I’ll watch Raise5.com closely to see how it develops.
Labels: Fiverr.com, Mechanical Turk, Raise5.com, Startup Weekend, Virgin Unite