How to Raise Money as a Young Entrepreneur

You have a great idea, you put together a plan, now all you need is some money to get started. Every business needs money to get started whether its an e-commerce business in need of buying some inventory, or simply a blog that needs hosting, a domain name or a designer.

But raising money for an entrepreneur is often one of the most challenging aspects of starting a new business. If its $1,000,000 or even just $1000 it’s never easy…

Before you start your funding raising effort, you need to decide what you are willing to give in exchange.  It can be a piece of your company, a percentage of the benefits or simply a loan.

Surprisingly, I could not find a lot of resources on the web on the subject so here are some tips and ideas that I would like to share.

As painful as it might sound, you probably will need to start by going into your own savings. By putting your own money on the table it shows that you’re committed and will encourage others to join you. Also by putting your self on the line, it can give you the extra determination to always go the extra mile and make sure your business succeeds.

Family and Friends:
Ask them to give you a hand, after all that’s what they’re there here for. Ask your family if they’re willing to “invest” in your business. Grandparents are usually open and eager to help if they can. Talk to your friends and get them excited about your business idea.

Enter a contest to win money for your business. There are always many running such as: The Dell Social Innovation CompetitionTLP and others if you search on the web.  Also many schools run competitions such as MITStanfordIndiana,  UNC and more.

There are also many ways to raise money online.  If your business is a non-profit, you can use widgets such as Chipin to collect money for your idea. Create a page dedicated to raising money with Create a Fund. Use Paypal to ask for donations.

Angels and Venture Capitalists:
Angel investors are private investors who usually invest small amounts  in start ups. Venture capitalists invest other peoples money.  There are angels willing to invest with teens but venture capitalists are usually not a common solution for teen entrepreneurs.

If you have any additional ideas, feel free to share them below.