Crowdfunding is one of the internet’s most successful and positive initiatives. By allowing virtually anyone to raise funds online for various purposes, crowdfunding became a vital source for funding unique artworks, important social projects, exciting indie films and amazing technological developments – all of which would have probably not made it to fruition without the generous help of strangers and online crowdfunding platforms.
Since crowdfunding campaigns rely heavily on raising awareness to a specific goal, every beginning crowdfunder should approach this task with a well thought out strategy and a coherent content plan.
If you’re planning to start a crowdfunding campaign but have no experience with this format, we put together a list of valuable advice that you should take note of:
1. Set Up a Schedule
Depending on the type of project you wish to fund, you need to start by creating a timetable for yourself. This timetable should integrate the campaign together with the actual work on your project.
Many crowdfunders prefer to start collecting donations in phase II or III of their project, since donors are more likely to share funds with a project that is already in the making. Set clear and realistic time goals for yourself and include them in your campaign description. It’s always easier to persuade people to give money when there is a time limit involved.
2. Be Persuasive
If you’re asking individuals from all over the world to open their wallet and share their money with you, you need to give them a good reason to do so. The texts included in your campaign should highlight the importance of your project, the uniqueness of your vision and the great value that the resulting product will have.
If you have visual material that can strengthen your case, be sure to use it! Examples of previous projects you have done, the initial specs of your current work, a video message from you to your donors or anything else that can incite people to click the ‘donate’ button are more than welcome.
3. Find the Right Platform
There are plenty of crowdfunding platforms for you to work with, and you can increase your chances of running a successful campaign by choosing the one that is best suited for your type of project.
- Kickstarter is the largest and most well-known platform, catering to a variety of projects in all fields. But being the most popular crowdfunding website also means that there are more projects on it to compete with.
- Indie Gogo is also open to broad topics but is mostly linked with indie art projects.
- Pledge Music is focusing on musicians and music-related projects.
- Go Fund Me is specializing in personal funding campaigns (like university tuition or medical bills).
- Peer Backers is where budding entrepreneurs and inventors can promote their ideas.
And there are plenty more out there!
4. Give Something Back
Many successful crowdfunding campaigns promise their donors something in return for their initial help in getting the project on its feet. You can decide, for instance, that anyone donating more than $20 gets a free copy of your film, a shirt with your designs on it, a free ticket to your shows, a personal thank you song, homemade pastries or anything else that you think might get people excited.
To encourage larger donations, you can offer various rewards for various funding categories – the more they give, the more you pamper them.
5. Recruit Ambassadors
Promoting the campaign to a large number of people will be the hardest task you’ll face during your campaign. It is much easier to do if you get a group of people to help you and commit to sharing the campaign frequently and effectively. Ideally, your ambassadors will be people who are themselves invested in the project and therefore have an interest in promoting it. However, it’s no shame to get family and friends to help you out. If you pull your time resources together, you will be able to expand your reach on social media and other online platforms.
Learn from the Best
To spike you up with some inspiration, here are some of our favorite online crowdfunding campaigns currently running: