Crowdfunding is the collection of finance from backers—the “crowd”—to fund an initiative and usually occurs on Internet platforms. Through sites like Kickstarter and Indiegogo, people pool money to help grow innovative ideas, including ones with a sustainable purpose. Such online platforms make it easy to peruse and support interesting projects. Depending on how much you donate, you can expect to receive anything from a simple “thank you” or a T-shirt, or bigger rewards such as discounted or early access to innovative products.
Marty Bell (and his team) has raised $550,000 for Tens, sunglasses brand with a simple ambition; to make your day look ten times better. Through a custom lens tint, they aim to make sunglasses with real life photo filter.
“I’ve been collecting these links & ideas for months in preparation of my first crowdfunding project that went live 5 weeks ago. Using techniques from the articles below we were lucky enough to receive press from the likes of Time, Huffington Post, Yahoo, Vice, Wired, Entrepreneur and more”, says Marty.
These are the great resources that helped Marty raise his funds in 5 weeks.
- Hacking Kickstarter: How to Raise $100,000 in 10 Days (Probably the best advice on the Internet on running a successful KS campaign by the big man Tim Ferriss!) – fourhourworkweek.com
- Hack Kickstarter – 6 Experts Reveal How They Crowdfunded $1mil (Hugely inspirational and helpful Udemy course comprised of in depth interviews with a number of successful campaign owners. Some of you may have been lucky enough to catch the free promo code that went out on reddit a while back) – udemy.com
- The hackers guide to getting press (Extremely efficient way of getting tons of blog press for your campaign or project) – austenallred.com
- Advanced Kickstarter linking strategies (don’t share your Kickstarter.com URL when getting press, make your own URL!) – gamesonthebrain.com
- Websites for launching your project to the world – news.ycombinator.com
- 3 Simple ways to get PR for your startup – forbes.com
- A list of blogs that featured a fellow redditor’s KS campaign – reddit.com
- How I used Instagram to promote our launch (Insight from a /u/rhino_so‘s Reddit post on launching bachelr.com) – reddit.com
- How we helped raise $75,000 for an Indiegogo campaign – Step-by-step (Some great tips & ideas in here) -blonde20.com
- How to effectively use Facebook ads (A great post from /u/kobyc who bought 160,000 which lead to $8k+ in sales) – reddit.com
- Six steps to run cheap and successful Facebook advertising campaigns – www.dipoll.com
- Exceeding Your Funding Goal on kickstarter – The basics (YouTube video, some good points on ‘Kickstarter Hacks’ around 10mins in) – youtube.com
- Kickstarter Post Mortems – crowdcrux.com
- Podcast of bag company Minaal who raised $340k+ – ecommercefuel.com (Thanks /u/PIIMM)
“Just a couple books I read before putting the campaign live that definitely helped me out.”
- Trust Me, I’m Lying: Confessions of a Media Manipulator – Ryan Holiday
- Contagious: Why Things Catch On – Jonah Berger
- Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook: How to Tell Your Story in a Noisy Social World – Gary Vaynerchuk
- Brainfluence: 100 Ways to Persuade and Convince Consumers with Neuromarketing
1. HAVE AN AMAZING VIDEO. Don’t half ass it or try to do it yourself if you aren’t insanely good at videography! If your video is bad, it’s going to be very difficult for people to take your project or idea seriously. There will be tons of people that’d love to help you out (for less money than you’d expect) in your area. Students may be down to help out in return for a small fee, knowing they’ll get a great portfolio piece (I would have jumped at the chance a few years ago)
2. Find owners of large viral Twitter accounts & pay them to tweet about your campaign. Try and find ones with an audience that’ll appreciate your campaign. Most large Twitter accounts have an email address in the bio. If they don’t – find the website they link off to (they usually link off to some ad-filled website – how they make their money). Do a WHOIS look-up on the domain and see if you can find a contact, there’s a high chance this person will run the account, or more than likely a network of accounts. Do this with large Instagram accounts & Facebook pages too!
3. These guys are very good at getting your campaign or product featured across very large Twitter/Tumblr accounts! We’ve used them towards the end of our campaign and have noticed a good spike in orders –exposely.com
4. Use ‘Backerkit’ to sort out your backers. The CSV’s that come out of Kickstarter/Indiegogo are a NIGHTMARE! This can be hugely time consuming & difficult if you’ve a lot of backers and different pledge levels to sort out.
5. Have a really nice press mini-site (i.e. yoursite.com/press). This should contain a press release that makes it extremely simple for blogs and press to pick up your story and give you a great feature. Have 3-8 paragraphs of text and links off to Dropbox folders filled with professionally shot web resolution and print resolution images. We also included Instagram ready images and a number of suggested tweets for people to shout about us with.
6. Gift your product to cool photographers that are big on Instagram etc. You may get some amazing pictures in return, for FAR less than you’d pay if you organised a proper shoot with them. Great photography is key in your campaign though, so don’t rely on this. Great for some bonus shots for social media though.
7. Integrate Mailchimp into campaign about section to retain customers that might not be able to afford at that moment.
8. Use nice subtle animated GIFs in the about section.
9. Keep accepting pre-orders via your own website once your campaign commences.
10. Contact those who’ve been successful on Kickstarter & Indiegogo with similar products (obviously not competitors, ha). Shoot them some free product and see if they’re willing to give you some insider tips and/or promote your campaign to their list of backers.
First published on reddit