Crowdfunding is the process of raising money in order to make more money. It is the process of convincing the masses that your vision is worth their time, attention, and money.
Successful crowdfunding campaigns become successful due to many reasons. The causes and the factors that give projects momentum, virality, and success are extremely diverse.
Nevertheless, those who know how to effectively craft and perform high-class crowdfunding campaigns are not lucky or “gifted”.
These smart individuals are leveraging various intelligent techniques, triggers, and psychology principles to boost their crowdfunding’s reach and impact, so their momentum can only grow stronger and stronger.
Of course, since you’ve landed on this particular post, I suppose you’re looking for the “tricks” and “secrets” that I’ve just mentioned about. Sure. You’ll get them. But…
What will you do with them? Most readers skim through posts such as these, without actually focusing on truly learning. I’d highly suggest you take these “secrets” seriously because they can make the entire difference between a “losing” and a “winning” crowdfunding campaign.
Let’s have a look.
Satisfy a Real Need and Solve or Solve a Real Problem
How do you justify the crowdfunding campaigns? How does it benefit the world? Why your project, and not another?
The number one reason why crowdfunding campaigns turn successful is that the products they feature are usually evergreen and they solve real needs and problems.
There’s a big difference between donating $1,000 to a company who wants to provide water to Africa children through some ingenious tool and donating $1,000 to a teenager fashion company that aims to redefine the trends once again. Trends come and go while problems will always persist.
Seek solutions to real problems, find a way to contribute to the “higher good” and let people know that you genuinely care for the world, and not just for yourself and your capital.
Research, Research, Research
Brian Tracy said that “one minute in planning equals ten minutes in action”. Then what about one month of planning? How much work can we save then?
Here’s another secret: to skyrocket your crowdfunding campaign’s success odds, focus and work on your project way before you list it.
This means that it often takes months (and years) to analyze, optimize, and stabilize your prototype. Crowdfunding involves a lot of work, and it can get overwhelming. For that reason, you should always be 100% ready to go before you “go crowdfunding”.
Do your homework first. The first Bluetooth speaker prototype launched by Van Den Nieuwenhuizen took over five years of planning and initial testing. Thomas Edison made a thousand attempts to create the lightbulb. When he has succeeded, there was no longer a need for crowdfunding.
Brian Cole, one of my fellow colleagues from NSBroker says that there exists such a motto in their office:
“There will be many challenges that you can anticipate by simply starting earlier. When you’re into something for a few months or years already, you’ll know how to react in critical circumstances and make wise and calculated decisions.”
Define Your Audience and Build a Follower’s Database Before Starting
Another secret of most successful crowdfunding campaigns is to know your audience better than you know yourself. When you create a product and expect a lot of people to support it, you need to fully understand what your audience’s thinks, wants, desires, dreams for, and so on.
You must know what touches them, and what makes them “tick”. Great products send strong emotional impacts.
Defining your audience is a long-term process that can be broken into a few steps:
- Surveying (direct feedback)
- Analysis (data) (indirect feedback)
Developing an online presence, gathering followers, and collecting email subscribers will allow you to gather the initial feedback required to optimize your crowdfunding campaign (before actually launching it). Therefore, before giving it a go, make sure you have a market fit and some well-developed target personas.
Sell Visions Instead of Features
Successful crowdfunding campaigns become successful because they sell more than just products and features. They sell inspiration, innovation, and visions. They provide people with a glimpse of “new”. A fresh perspective will always grab attention.
“A vision is something that “touches the heart” of your prospect. It makes him feel like your project is not about the world but about him. It resonates with his principles and so it wins its trust and faith.” – Jane Clarke, Crowdfunding Manager at one of the writing services.
There’s a “click” in every person’s brain whenever someone or something has something in common with him. If your product makes the world a better place, if it brings good to both the masses and the project supporters, you’ll usually have a winner. Promote it well and you’ll soon be there!
Don’t Rely Solely on Crowdsourcing
As they say, you should “bring some money to the table” and not rely only on crowdsourcing. Most successful crowdfunding projects were started by entrepreneurs who have personally invested everything they had to turn their idea into reality.
Marc Barros has recently launched the Moment smartphone lens, a product that has raised over $100,000 on Kickstarter in only 28 hours. Before getting to that achievement, he pointed out that they’ve invested over $80,000 to prepare for the Kickstarter stage: prototyping, samples, engineering, design, branding, crowdfunding marketing, and much more.
Remember: crowdfunding success is rare. The more you prepare for it and the more you invest in it (through every possible resource you have) the higher your odds will be. These tips will help you start top crowdfunding campaigns.
If you think about it, every individual is able to launch a crowdfunding campaign. However, it’s only the exceptions who “make it big”. In crowdfunding, you’re successful when you’ve reached the financial milestone needed to begin your operations. It’s not about making millions of dollars, but about “borrowing” those millions to materialize your concept and vision.
Pay attention to our tips and tricks, and make sure you keep them close into consideration while approaching your future crowdfunding campaign. Best of luck!
by Jacob Dillon
Yan Anderson is the Head of Content Marketing at CS-Cart with over 10 years of experience in the eCommerce industry. He's passionate about explaining complicated things in simple terms. Yan has expertise in building, running and growing eCommerce marketplaces. He loves to educate people about best practices, new technologies, and trends in the global eCommerce industry.