Crowdfunding is poised to be the next big revolution in business investment, particularly for women and minorities who are traditionally underserved by venture capitalists and traditional lending markets.
There are incredible stories of success coming from businesses that got their initial funding rounds through crowdfunding, but there are still a significant number of campaigns that don’t succeed. So how do you make sure your crowdfunding presentation is one of the ones that work These tips will get you closer.
1. Have a plan
It is relatively easy to set up a crowdfunding campaign and people start crowdfunding campaigns for various types of projects. Many entrepreneurs fund their startups while others fund their family unions, but that’s not the same as it being something you can do carelessly.
You should create and vet your campaign page, work your leads to try and get a big push on your goal on day 1, and have a social media strategy in place to make sure that you get a big burst of publicity. Know what you’re going to do as you head in so that your project is polished and ready to be seen.
2. Make it personal
Great content focuses on the person who’s shopping. For many small investors, such as a company would see on crowdsourcing platforms, they’re often looking for products to back not because they’re thinking of great investment strategies, but because they’re interested in the product or service specifically.
Companies generate this kind of interest by being specific and targeted in the stories they’re telling. They might talk about how a particular product will help a certain customer, or how customers have already enjoyed prototypes. But they will attempt to create a personal connection with the ideal customer by showing that customer how the product will change their life.
3. Don’t focus on the numbers
One mistake CEOs make when heading into a big campaign is to treat a crowdfunding campaign like an investor meeting. They bring out all the numbers having to do with order books, sales leads, and profit margins. The average small investor doesn’t care about this, and might even be turned off by this.
The information is key to having a successful business plan and making sure that a company can survive its first year; it may even be key to attracting some larger investors. But centering the information in your crowdfunding project is always a mistake.
4. Tell a great story
All great content marketing shares one significant feature; it tells good stories. Stories have a beginning, middle, and end. They make a point, and there are themes and references that support the point. They make sure that the reader (or customer) understands what is being offered, and what they can reach out and get.
This may be the part of a crowdfunding campaign that is hardest for the average person to craft. If you don’t feel comfortable crafting your brand or project’s primary story, this may be worth hiring a copywriter to create. Find a freelancer who has experience creating great projects for crowdfunding; if possible, get references and visit sites in which the freelancer was involved.
Stories motivate people to do something. That may be buying your product, investing in your project, or sharing your story on social media, but we as humans are conditioned to respond to stories. Giving your project elements of a story helps people know what they should do next.
5. Make social media work for you
If you just share your project to your personal social media network, you will not get the kind of attention you need to fully fund your project. Just like you start your project long before it goes live by cultivating sales leads, you start your project’s social media presence long before it goes live. You use stories, media posts, and tools designed to make sure that a large number of social media posts are shared all at the same time.
Social media is built on connections, and so is crowdfunding. By cultivating your social media network, you put yourself in a great position to successfully fund your campaign and get your company off the ground.
Crowdfunding may be simple, but that’s not the same as easy. To have a successful campaign, begin with crafting a great story, building up sales leads and social media connections, and then making sure that the actual project is clear and easy to read. Continue to connect with fans throughout the campaign and encourage them to share their hopes for the project, their donations, and their enthusiasm with their own social media circles.
For those who have traditionally struggled to find appropriate funding for their business ideas, crowdfunding offers the chance both to get their companies off the ground, and also to demonstrate that they are just as capable entrepreneurs as the more traditional group of white men.