• Why Look at Grant Funding? Part 2

    sam-cockerill

    The question you might ask yourself before you put pen to paper is whether, given the preceding questions about the associated value and risk, now is genuinely the right time to go for this particular grant application.  You may come across a one-off grant opportunity dispensing ready cash from some un-spent pot and when it’s gone it’s gone, in which case, good luck!  However, most grants are distributed from public funds (which, though tight, are recurring) to achieve policy aims that generally (but not always) survive multiple grant funding rounds and mechanisms.

    A number of grant schemes either have ‘open calls’ i.e. apply when you like, or are phased with a clear timetable of when each batch of new applications should be submitted for consideration.  If your project would be more valuable if it kicked off in 12 months’ time, for example to benefit from the results of current projects, fundraising activities or partner negotiations – then wait, and your application will be much stronger for it.

    Tips to help you secure funding

    1. Target your application. Scour the internet for grant opportunities, get onto the right mailing lists.  When you find a grant opportunity that looks right, read the competition scope in detail, then re-read your plan.  Are they aligned?  Does the project you are considering get you to your intended destination, faster?  Or is it a bit of a stretch, tempting only because of the prospect of non-diluting funding?
    1. Invest the necessary time to do your application well, your competitor applicants will. If you have satisfied yourself that the application is worth doing, then you need to pull out all the stops to define the best possible project with the best possible partners, and describe it in the best possible light.  It will take time.
    1. Research and review your application thoroughly.  Find a business that has succeeded with this particular grant scheme in the past, and ask them for advice.  Speak to your partners about the application.  Ask your advisory board for input, and for proof reading. Don’t submit an application with sloppy typos or one that is inadvertently out of scope.
    1. Reflect on your past failures.  It is unlikely that every grant application you submit will succeed.  If you fail, you will normally get feedback from the process, sometimes in the form of anonymous reviewer comments.  Pour over this feedback, and check whether there are any areas you could improve next time.  Did the reviewer(s) understand your proposition?  Were they sceptical about your market or product assertions?  This type of feedback is your most valuable source of information you can have for those grant competitions where you are permitted to re-apply.
    1. Take your rejections for what they are:  a source of feedback and a reflection of the competitive nature of grant funding.  Use this feedback to sharpen your judgement about whether the next grant is worth going for.  Do not give up.

    GOOD LUCK!

    Other funding support is available through the ecoConnect Investor Directory, Grants Directory and Greenbackers Investment Pitch.

    A number of grant schemes either have ‘open calls’ i.e. apply when you like, or are phased with a clear timetable of when each batch of new applications should be submitted for consideration.  If your project would be more valuable if it kicked off in 12 months’ time, for example to benefit from the results of current projects, fundraising activities or partner negotiations – then wait, and your application will be much stronger for it.

    TIPS TO HELP YOU SECURE FUNDING

    1. Target your application:Scour the internet for grant opportunities, get onto the right mailing lists.  When you find a grant opportunity that looks right, read the competition scope in detail, then re-read your plan.  Are they aligned?  Does the project you are considering get you to your intended destination, faster?  Or is it a bit of a stretch, tempting only because of the prospect of non-diluting funding?
    2. Invest the necessary time to do your application well, your competitor applicants will:If you have satisfied yourself that the application is worth doing, then you need to pull out all the stops to define the best possible project with the best possible partners, and describe it in the best possible light.  It will take time.
    3. Research and review your application thoroughly:Find a business that has succeeded with this particular grant scheme in the past, and ask them for advice. Speak to your partners about the application.  Ask your advisory board for input, and for proof reading. Don’t submit an application with sloppy typos or one that is inadvertently out of scope.
    4. Reflect on your past failures:It is unlikely that every grant application you submit will succeed.  If you fail, you will normally get feedback from the process, sometimes in the form of anonymous reviewer comments.  Pore over this feedback, and check whether there are any areas you could improve next time. Did the reviewer(s) understand your proposition?  Were they sceptical about your market or product assertions?  This type of feedback is your most valuable source of information you can have for those grant competitions where you are permitted to re-apply.
    5. Persevere:Take your rejections for what they are:  a source of feedback and a reflection of the competitive nature of grant funding.  Use this feedback to sharpen your judgement about whether the next grant is worth going for.  Do not give up.

    GOOD LUCK!

    Other funding support is available through the ecoConnect Investor Directory, Grants Directory, and Greenbackers Investment Pitch

    Click here to read part 1

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