March 12, 2017
Crowdfunding is a great way for entrepreneurs to launch their projects without having to raise capital from banks or venture capital firms. It lets you see what the demand for your product will be without buying tons of inventory upfront.
But the sad reality is, between 69 and 89 percent of crowdfunding campaigns will fail to reach their goal. Which begs the question...
Why is it that some truly fantastic products fail to meet their crowdfunding goals while average products go on to raise millions?
We have been on both sides of the street: two of our crowdfunding campaigns were successful while one failed. We definitely would not call ourselves experts on how to launch a successful crowdfunding campaign, but we did learn quite a bit from the process.
Before each of our own campaigns, we contacted other projects owners, hoping they would fill us in on the “secret sauce” for launching a successful Kickstarter campaign. What we learned is that unfortunately, there is no secret sauce.
But there are certain steps you can take to dramatically increase your chances for success and hopefully, this article will point you in the right direction.
One of the biggest mistakes many entrepreneurs make is that they don’t get feedback on their product before they take it to market. Market research is one of the best ways to figure out your pricing, demographics, as well as the strengths and weakness of your product. This definitely takes some trial and error but it will save you a lot of time and frustration down the road.
Creating a survey through SurveyMonkey is a great way to conduct market research. The information we received through our surveys helped us make improvements to Cloop and create a better product for our customers.
During your pre-campaign period, content is everything and no, it does not need to be professionally done. You can hire a professional photographer or video editor but if your content isn’t relevant and interesting than you wasted your money.
The most important thing to remember is that your content must be likable and engaging. It should be fun and make your audience want to learn more.
Set up a blog where you can keep your audience up to date on what is going on with your product. People love preliminary information! Share “sneak peaks” like prototypes, sketches, FAQs, and giveaways.
Social media is another valuable way to begin engaging with potential backers. The best channels to use are generally Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook.
Set up a Facebook page and a public group dedicated to your project where you share relevant, interesting content. For example, if your product is a learning tool for kids, create a Facebook account with helpful information for parents.
Your campaign video is the highlight of your project. Make sure it is funny, interesting, short (less than a minute and a half), and includes a call to action. Make sure your reward strategy is simple and that it isn’t difficult to fulfill your orders.
A good rule of thumb to follow is to use fewer words and more visuals. You have about a 15-second window to capture your audience’s attention.
Make sure you set up and connect Google Analytics from the beginning. Google can collect data about your visitors so you can gain more information about your demographics.
You should make sure that your product is outstanding and that it is correctly priced. You will want to provide rewards to your backers; the more you are asking for, the more you should reward them with.
Most people recommend launching a short campaign and 30 days seems to be the standard length. Crowdfunding campaigns can be very draining and in most cases, you will receive 80 percent of your funds within the first five days.
In case you haven’t figured this out yet, launching your campaign will be the very last item on your to-do list. Timing is everything when you are trying to launch a successful crowdfunding campaign. You should plan to spend at least two months building up your email list.
Ideally, you will want to have an email list of more than 1,000 potentials backers before you start your project. Make sure you build anticipation so that they will be excitedly waiting for your project to launch.
If you don’t get funded within the first ten days we would recommend canceling your campaign and restarting at a later date. You will be more likely to succeed on your second campaign because you have already established yourself with the crowdfunding community and gained some credibility.
Crowdfunding is a huge change in the traditional funding paradigm. It is an exciting way to launch your products, fund your business venture, and create a supportive group of followers who are invested in your company’s success.
A successful campaign requires a lot of time, planning, and energy but the results are incredibly rewarding. We hope you found this blog useful and that your crowdfunding campaign is a huge success.
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