The Secret to Crowdfunding is in the Name.
You need a crowd in order to go crowdfunding.
Sounds basic but this is the main reason why crowdfunding campaigns fail. The lack of an engaged crowd of willing backers.
In fact, well over 70% of rewards based crowdfunding campaigns do not make it. Many people come to me and say why is no one backing my crowdfunding campaign.
One main reason is that people expect the crowdfunding website where they have setup their campaign to bring the crowd along for them.
There is also somehow the expectation that there are people all over the internet looking for campaigns to back. That is definitely NOT the case.
There is however something called a ‘repeat backer’ - people who like to back certain types of products or invest in certain types of businesses. These repeat backers will never make up a significant part of your target. You will be lucky if they contribute more than 5% of the overall total you are wanting to raise.
That does not mean you should not find out who these repeat backers are. Once you have identified who they are they will form part of your crowd.
Check out the various tools that are out there that will help you identify repeat backers as part of your strategy to build your crowd before you go crowdfunding. Add these repeat backers to your email list and get them excited about your coming crowdfunding campaign.
Yes, your family and friends are crucial to your crowdfunding success.
I know, I know… most of us do not want to approach our family and friends. Afraid to ask? Fear of rejection maybe?
There is a great TED talk where Amanda Palmer, a singer/musician (who raised well over a million dollars on Kickstarter), explains how to overcome the fear of asking. Believe it or not it does not come naturally to most of us and with her persuasion you will be able to do it with ease.
Amanda Palmer has even written a book on the topic called ‘The Art of Asking’ if you need additional inspiration.
Start now by compiling an email list of all the people you know personally. Reach out to them by phone. Do what you have to do to get them on board. They are a crucial part of your crowd.
The momentum in the early stages of the campaign will prove crucial to your overall success. Prep them now on what’s to come. You will not regret it.
Yes - you have met many people in your lifetime, hundreds, if not thousands.
We are connected to them all over the place. Mostly on Social Media. Get busy and start connecting with them all again.
Telling them about your campaign is an easy way to open a conversation, no matter how long ago it was in the past when you lasted talked to each other.
Make sure that during your conversation that you somehow get their email address. Have a landing page up somewhere on the internet where you send them explaining you need their email address to notify them as to when you launch.
Email, email, email is the secret sauce behind the success of your crowdfunding campaign. Email converts more people into backers than all of Social Media combined many times over.
So do not forget to collect that email address from everyone you know….
Strangers do not back crowdfunding campaigns. So how do you get them involved?
This crowd (people you do not know) is broken up into two crowds.
The first group of people you do not know are friends of the people you do know. That is why it is so important to get your family and friends on board early in the launch of your campaign.
After your friends and family have backed your campaign it is up to you to go back to them and ask them to get their friends to do the same.
Can you see what is happening here? You do not know them but these new backers know your family and friends. They will back you based on word of mouth (or mouse if you prefer) and encouragement from your family and friends.
It is now time to borrow someone else’s crowd!
The second group of people you do not know belong to someone else’s crowd, lets say an influencer.
These influencers are varied and have spent years building up their own crowds. These influencers could be bloggers, journalists, You-tubers, Instagrammers, you name it…
It is now time for you to identify influencers who have built up crowds that you think will be a good fit for your crowdfunding campaign. There are many online tools out there that you can use to identify ideal influencers that you can reach out to.
We call this ‘third party validation’.
Just one blog post, video, post or article can generate enough traffic to you campaign to launch you way past your target. I have seen this happen many times.
However, it is up to you to develop a relationship with these influencers long before you go crowdfunding.
When the time is right you can ask them to put your crowdfunding campaign message in front of their crowd. Sit back and watch that magic happen.
You can now see the importance of building a crowd BEFORE you go crowdfunding.
There are many ways of doing that. Get out your strategy plan and make sure you add this task to your list. Put it right at the top :)
There are many success factors that you need to have in place before you go crowdfunding. Setup up, growing and engaging your crowd is the most important.
Take action on growing your crowd today!