Standing Out From The Crowd: 7 Tips For Crowdfunding Your Startup
Launching a crowdfunding campaign is a great way to fund your startup. Not only do they provide money in the bank, they also function as promotional material. When a campaign gains a lot of traction, you know you’re onto a winner. However, too many people take crowdfunding for granted - if you want your startup to be a success, you’re going to need to put in the work. We’ll explore how a successful crowdfunding campaign starts at the community level - read on for our top tips for crowdfunding your startup.
1. Build A Community From The Outset
Before launching your crowdfunding campaign, you can take some important steps to ensure it’s a success. This begins by building a community that you know can rally behind your project, support it, and share it with a wider audience. Your community should include prospective backers, but can also be expanded in important ways - remember that a high profile share is going to be as important as a financial backer. Reach out to influencers and members of the media to build some momentum behind your project.
2. Choose Your Platform Wisely
Before building your campaign you should explore the differences between the main platforms - not all are created equal. There are several variations on the crowdfunding model - rewards, equity and debt - so it’ll be important to understand which format will work for your startup. Beyond that, there are many platforms for crowdfunding - some of these offer one or all of these crowdfunding models.
Further, some platforms offer an all-or-nothing approach: if you don’t hit your target, your campaign has failed, whereas others allow you to walk away with everything you’ve gained in support. Choose your platform based on your financial need and objectives.
3. Learn From Other Crowdfunding Campaigns
When you’re running a campaign, it’s important to remember that there are many who have gone before you - there is a wealth of experience to be drawn from, and the failed campaigns have just as much to teach as the successful ones. On Kickstarter, every campaign is memorialized so you can explore this archive to pick up some tips and tricks about what works - and what doesn’t.
4. Don’t Be Shy
“Self-promotion is key to the success of a crowdfunder, so shrug off those reservations and start blowing your own trumpet. You’ve built your startup from the ground up and you should be proud - now you’re hunting for funding it’s time to shout about it,” says John S. Hooks, a business writer at Britstudent and NextCoursework. “Long before you launch your startup you should be building hype for your crowdfunder.”
5. Invest In A Professional Video
“When you’re sharing your crowdfunder you need something that catches peoples’ attention,” says Kevin M. Liston, a content marketer at 1 Day 2 Write and Write My X. “A short, professionally made video can explain your mission quicker and more compellingly than any text, so attaching this type of material to your crowdfunder is a great way to ensure success.” It’s also a format that’s easily shared so you’ll see your backers spreading the word.
6. Get Into Analytics
Analytic tools are a way to bolster your campaign as it’s running as they give you the data that can tell you what you need to tweak and where. For example, analytics can show you how much traffic you’re getting on your campaign page, and what percentage of these viewers are showing their support with their wallets. If your traffic is low you’ll need to work on how your project is being shared. If you’re seeing high traffic but a low conversion rate, maybe you need to tweak how the message is being delivered to improve conversions.
7. Keep In Touch
Even whilst your campaign is ongoing you can keep in touch with your backers - let them know how you’re doing and offer updates on progress. After all, they’ve chipped in so you can assume their interest. By keeping in touch you’ll remind them that you’re out there and you might motivate them to share your campaign one last time - every share means more contributions and one step closer to success for your startup.
Crowdfunding is a fantastic way to fund your startup - but you can’t take the crowd’s funds for granted. Build a community before you start, invest in professional promotional material, and keep in touch with your backers. You’ll be on the road to startup success.