How to market your crowdfunding campaign
So, you are ready to kick start your invention on a crowdfunding platform. How can you ensure a successful campaign? Crowdfunding platforms are not there to market your idea. You have to do that yourself. Here are some pointers that will help you create a strong campaign and market it successfully. The key: prepare everything and plan ahead.
What are the basic elements my crowdfunding campaign should have?
Idea: The success of crowdfunding comes from a “crowd” of people finding an idea interesting and worthy of their support. It is absolutely critical to include a concrete and sellable vision of your product or service in your campaign.
The pitch: Make a clear pitch! Introduce the project with a clear message that is easy to understand. Describe your idea and key features from the beginning so people can quickly grasp exactly what it is.
The video: Make it short, interesting, and well-produced. Answer all the questions a donor might have, use pictures to tell your story, and make people want to watch more.
The rewards: Make your rewards applicable to the type of project and be sure the rewards structure appeals to your project’s audience.
Funding goal: Make your funding goal reasonable for what your project is. Work out your numbers and keep it safe. In other words, it’s okay to ask for a little more as a buffer against unexpected costs, but don’t be greedy. Your goal has to make sense for potential donors or they will lose trust in you. And, finally, don’t set goals you can’t achieve.
What marketing strategies should I use to run a successful crowdfunding campaign?
Deciding how to market your crowdfunding campaign can be tricky. Each idea and invention is unique and caters to different demographics, so there is no “one size fits all” marketing campaign we can suggest. When it comes to marketing strategies for promoting a crowdfunding campaign, the details will depend on your product and business sector, but there are some general guidelines that apply across the board.
Friends: Rely on the support of your friends. Spread the word to close friends, family, neighbours, and acquaintances. Include any person you have supported in the past as they will likely donate to your cause. Ask your initial supporters to share your campaign with their friends and family. Make a list of their names, emails, and phone numbers and develop a strategy to reach out to each person.
Personal touch: People who add a personal side to their story have better chances than those who keep it strictly professional. Statistics show that first-person stories about individuals are more powerful motivators than stories about groups of people. While preparing your story, focus on what matters to you and the effect that reaching your goal will have on your life.
Advertising: Not all ideas have to be marketed everywhere. Some ideas work better if you only use online methods like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and newsletters to lists of specific targets. Some ideas work best if you use print campaigns. Or, in some cases, you may want to use some of each. Understanding your target audience is essential to defining the ideal communication method.
Social media: Use all free social media platforms to your advantage. Create a fan page on Facebook that links to your campaign. Share with your current friend list or run a paid campaign to gain followers. Do this with all social platforms your audience uses.
Public figure or brand: If your idea has a public figure who can back it and promote it, that is a plus! If it has attracted the interest of a brand that will back it, that is fantastic as well. (Keep in mind that you can still have a successful campaign even if you don’t have this kind of support.)
Bloggers and journalists: Reach out to bloggers in your industry. They are always looking for the next great idea and yours may be of interest to them. Ask them for help. Offer them incentives for sharing your story.
Media: Attract the attention of the media. Be creative! A media mention is free advertising that reaches thousands of people. Go to your local paper or news station. Show them the personal side of the story and they will share it. Try to get a few press interviews.
Follow up: As you gain followers and backers, stay in contact with them. Send them updates or new information about your product. Keep them engaged. If they email or contact you, always respond as soon as you can. Create a bond with your fans. Motivate your donors. Keep your project fresh and growing in public awareness during the time your campaign is active.
Feedback: Ask for feedback at any point in time. If your campaign fails, you can try again with all of this new knowledge.
Website: Have a website ready where you can promote the crowdfunding campaign. Use SEO for specific keywords so interested people can find your idea and link to your campaign. Give them lots of images and a clear way of understanding your purpose. Place your video at the top of the home page. Try to use a one-page website so people can find all relevant information with one scroll of a mouse.
Money and time: Be prepared to spend a lot of time promoting your campaign. If you don’t have time, be ready to hire a professional company to manage your campaign for you. Crowdfunding platforms are not designed to promote your campaign so you have to hustle to promote it and get exposure. PLAN AHEAD!!!! Before you even start, make a list of what you will do and how much each strategy will cost. You do not want any expensive surprises to derail your efforts!
Campaign length: Schedule your campaign’s start and end dates to create a sense of urgency.
Be creative: Think outside the box when running your campaign. Engage with your audience and promise something that they will love. Experiment with creative tactics that will appeal to your audience. Adapt, change, and test new ideas!
Be thankful: Show gratitude and appreciation. Statistics show that thank-you letters to donors inspire them to donate again. Never forget to thank them!
Please understand that you can’t just hit post on your crowdfunding platform then sit back and watch the dollars roll in. It doesn’t work that way. Before you post your campaign, you have to spend at least a few months preparing. You also have to be committed and engaged until the day the campaign ends and you deliver the products and rewards.
Budget carefully and conservatively when planning a crowdfunding project and good luck! If you are considering raising money this way and wondering how to market your crowdfunding campaign, give us a call. We can help you plan and launch a successful campaign.