In the article, “8 Tips For Crowdfunding Success,” featured on Forbes’ website, contributor Geri Stengel discusses crowdfunding tips for startups and existing businesses.
“Whether you’re a startup or an existing business, a rewards-based crowdfunding campaign offers debt- and equity-free money to launch a product,” writes Stengel in the article.
In the article, Stengel shares eight crowdfunding tips:
- Build your network early. Make sure to take all opportunities available to connect with your community to help spread the word of your campaign. “The word ‘crowdfunding’ is something of a misnomer,” explains Stengel in the article. “In general, the majority of money raised comes from people who know of you directly or are one degree away. They are interested in what you are doing. Few campaigns go viral.”
- Research crowdfunding platforms. Make sure to do your research to discover which crowdfunding platform is the right fit for your business campaign.
- Consider rewards. Having a reward for your crowdfunding campaign can help contribute to its success. Stengel uses the successful crowdfunding of Shelley Prevost of Torch, as an example. Prevost had an intern who researched which types of rewards would work best. Low-level rewards may result in little money; however, higher rewards, notes Stengel, require fewer sales to reach your goal. Prevost also found that time-limited rewards, such as an early-bird special, can also boost campaign success.
- Including a “why” in your story. To be successful, crowdfunding must draw attention, especially through social media. In the article, Stengel shares this quote from Donna Cravotta, CEO of Social Sage PR, ““When you’re trying to influence, persuade or convince people, nothing is more powerful than a good story.” Having a good story backed by passion helps you stand out from the rest and connect with others. Having this connection with others will boost more support for your campaign.
- Grab attention. Videos can help tell your story and improve your changes of a successful campaign. “First and foremost, a video is a chance to tell your story and convey your grand plan,” asserts Stengel in the article. “It lets you show why you started this venture and who is behind the company. Make the most of the moment.”
- Experiment with your marketing strategy. No one-size-fits-all marketing strategy exists. Make sure to shop around and see which approach works best for your campaign. For Torch, notes Stengel in the article, Facebook ads, email and Pinterest were the best marketing approaches.
- Keep momentum. You need to show support from the beginning if you want a successful crowdfunding campaign. “Backers are likely to stay on the sidelines until they see that others have anted up. Before you launch, identify the people you think are likely to back your campaign,” says Stengel in the article, adding that it is important to target these people before the campaign begins. This will help establish momentum for your campaign.
- Extras to boost your efforts. Money and determination can help bring success to your crowdfunding efforts. For Prevost, shares Stengel in the article, outside funding helped bring her campaign to the next level; she used the money to hire a marketing agency and also to build a prototype of her product.
Read the entire article on crowdfunding here.