Anyone can ask for donations but why not offer a reward people will actually use and love? How many times a week do you think these same people are being solicited to support other causes? The reality is, people are busy and their bandwidth to help is limited.
Whether you agree with it or not, our economy is currently built on people buying things - lots of things. And since people already buy things, at an amazing rate, why not help them do some good at the same time. For some reason rewarding supporters with something that they would actually want to buy, up to this point has almost been an oxymoron.
There are hundreds of ways to use fundraising rewards; Bonfire just happens to offer a turnkey way to reward your supporters with something I happen to love, soft-style, ring-spun t-shirts. But I know I can’t be the only one that likes t-shirts as there are over a billion shirts printed every year. So if you create an online campaign to sell your original shirt (for this already very large market), you never know when thousands of other people that you don’t know, will fall in love with your shirt.
These people most likely have never heard of your cause. And outside of them buying your shirt, you may never know if they will truly join your cause. But if they wear your shirt, they will have joined your movement as a member of your unpaid, “walking billboard” army. “Hey nice t-shirt! What does it mean and where did you get it?” : “Oh this? It is for this awesome cause that I donated money to. I will send you the link so you can buy one too.”