How do you ensure that you’ve optimized your campaign for success? By using the following 7 strategies, launch a successful crowdfunding campaign.Sarath Muralikrishnan
When you start a new business, all your focus is on getting the funding for your business idea. You need to think out-of-the-box for raising capital. Crowdfunding has become a standard fundraising route for new or growing businesses. It gives the initial push to turn your dreams into reality. To begin with the crowdfunding process, you need great strategies and marketing plan that can appeal to your potential customers. The battle for page views and pledges have become more competitive, particularly on portal sites that feature various live projects at a time. So how do you ensure that you’ve optimized your campaign for success? By using the following 7 strategies, launch a successful crowdfunding campaign.
Share your Story: As they say, "The more you leave out, the more you highlight what you leave in.” When it comes to gaining customers’ trust, it is vital to communicate your story to them. Make your story compelling in such a way that your product shines. Show your credibility by speaking your heart out, let the audience know what difficulties you have faced before starting your business, outline your concept and its future scope, and demonstrate how exactly your idea will work. Talk about why your product is different. The listener should know what problem you’re solving, which will invite the consumer to your project. In short, let the potential founder connect with your story emotionally, as it helps to prove the credibility and legitimacy of your project.
Are you wondering what if you don't have any personal story to share? No worries, share the facts and highlights of your startup and your product. Share what are you planning to do, where the product idea came from, what will be your budget and why you’re so passionate about it. It's all about staying connected with your potential funders. People on crowdfunding sites like Indiegogo or Kickstarter want to know how you are planning to turn your idea into a reality.You need to explain to them why you need their support.
Organize a Marketing Event: It is vital to creating awareness about your campaign and products. If you build a feeling of excitement and attract your potential funders through a well-known event, there are possibilities of getting them to invest in your project.People love to feel that they are part of something bigger than themselves. You can even relate your product to a sporting event, or holiday season to boost the energy surrounding your launch. You can take the advantage of the emotional atmosphere surrounding these events and get people enthusiastic about your product and involve them in the discussions. After a great event, they will brag about what a great time they had, and the next day will probably want to help you achieve your dream. This is particularly useful for connecting with sponsors through social channels, capitalizing on trending topics and popular hashtags to get more eyes on your fundraising!
Provide value for value: Crowdfunding isn't just based on receiving but on reciprocity. No matter whether you are getting $10 or $1000, it is necessary to give a fitting reward to the contributions you are getting.If your startup offers wonderful rewards, opportunities or products, you’ve created a huge incentive for sponsors to pledge to your campaign. Whether it’s a free service, product, discount or something future users won’t be able to have, it should be something attractive enough that the donors would pay to receive. Their wards offered to your backers should also be promising. For example, make them your priority when the first product from your company comes out. This will boost someone to invest their money in promoting your project. When picking your reward tiers, consider whether the incentives would invite you if you were the consumer. You can also ask your family members, friends, and business acquaintances for their honest opinions as well. Keep in mind that running a rich crowdfunding campaign requires many affordable perks. This means that if you want the most potential sponsors, these affordable perks should not run out of stock too fast.
Build credibility and legitimacy: Most prospective sponsors would want to know about your company as well as the product you are launching. Backers usually believe in your campaign when they see it. In other words, they require evidence to see that your startup is recognized and picking up steam before choosing to back your crowdfunding campaign. One of the ways to make your campaign clear is by making them believe that by building your website. Your website will clearly show the photos of your product to create a good first impression for proposed buyers. Your website can also have a well-edited crowdfunding video. Make the video well-scripted, short and to the point.
A visual image is powerful enough to speak for your campaign. If you have a model or pictures of your product, include them as well. If you’re building an app, don’t forget to share a mockup. People are much more likely to sponsor if they have a definite idea of what the finalized product will look like and what they are investing their money in.
Hence, show your backers what they’ll be supporting in detail. Tell them how it works, how you got the idea you, and even pictures or videos if you have a model. Just keep in mind that you will probably never meet your sponsors in person, so the more proof you can provide that your startup is genuine, the better it would be.
Communicate with your supporters: If you want to make your crowdfunding campaign a success, you need to fully achieve your target and need to follow up with your backers. Don’t just let your backers go in the dark after they have sponsored in your project. Try to interact with your audience through regular updates, social media outreach, thank you emails and acknowledgments for their questions and feedback.Highlight particular things that you think several individuals might like, particularly the rewards, and encouragement that all their requirements will be met on time.
The best way is to build anticipation and improve engagement in many ways. Post regular updates regarding your project; this way the sponsors will think that your project is active. You can also conduct a product giveaway, or also host many contests that include your crowdfunding campaign. There are limitless possibilities that can be tailored for your startup.
Pro Tip: Whenever you interact with your backers, always support open dialogue and commitment. Overall, people would prefer talking over listening. Manage your updates and outreach as a conversation rather than a one-sided message. Try to link up with your backers so if you need further investment, they can invest in your business idea. This is a great way to collect funds and make your campaign a successful one.
Show some examples of social proof: It is human nature that no one wants to be the first one investing in an unknown project. They need to see other influential people involved in the crowdfunding campaign. So it is a great idea to ask someone not able to support you as an adviser, backer or endorser of your startup. To make other backers feel that they are not the only one investing in the project, share your list of patrons and partners to give the confidence to the new backers and let them know that they won’t be the only on eating your party. This would boost their confidence, and if they like your campaign, they may end up giving you more support.
Stick to your promises: For a successful crowdfunding campaign, it is necessary to stick to your promises and live up to your supporters expectations. If you commit to your supporters that the product will be available by a specific date, make sure it actually happens that way. This would make a good impression on your startup as well as product. Things could go wrong and unexpected events may occur, but you owe to them to deliver the product on the promised date. Not achieving what you said would only earn you a bad status and people may be annoyed with you. So, it is recommended that before setting a specific date, take into account some additional time for unanticipated setbacks.
Conclusion: Crowdfunding is not that difficult, but yes, it takes complete dedication. It’s all about paying attention to minor details and making calculated decisions. What makes it best is that it not only benefits you in getting the needed funding, but it also helps you in getting customers when you launch your product.