Crowdfunding for masks has been popular during the pandemic
Photo by Luiza Braun on Unsplash
The Start of the Pandemic
When the pandemic started to emerge last March with the first lock downs we saw an initial slow down for some of our crowdfunding consulting clients – particularly those who were creating new products and using crowdfunding to raise funds for their first production runs or who were looking at tooling in overseas locations as supply chains and distribution became disrupted.
Although some early stage new venture campaigns stalled there was a wave of campaigns where existing businesses started to struggle due to COVID restrictions particularly in the hospitality sector and campaigns like the Lawnbrook Estate from Western Australia came on board where they leveraged off their existing loyal customer base to help them through the pandemic.
In the case of Lawnbrook Estate they had a bumper harvest and were getting ready to start bottling when their restaurant closed down so they cleverly pre-sold the vintage to pay for their bottling.
The Emergence of New Ventures – skills applied to new ideas
Next we saw a band of entrepreneurial campaigns from those who whilst not able to undertake their usual activates they looked to use crowdfunding to turn their hand to another activity. A great example was from Suzanne from Mosman, Sydney with her “
Dogs on Doorsteps” campaign.
Suzanne’s usual business of family photography was closed and during her morning dog walks during lock down she began to take photos of dogs on doorsteps. As to be expected her photographs were beautiful and she decided to use crowdfunding to make a coffee table book.
Suzanne exceeded her crowdfunding target raising over $21,000 and in her case also managed to raise an extra $5,000 for charity.
First Time Crowdfunders
Both of these campaign creators were first time crowdfunders. They both worked extremely hard at their campaigns and started their campaigns with an existing customer or follower base.
One of the mistakes that first time campaigners often make is to focus all of their effort on creating a beautiful campaign page, forgetting that they need to build an initial crowd before launch. They then go on to launch too soon and find it hard to pick up. A good start is a fairly essential first step for any campaign with hopes of success.
As the pandemic progresses people who still had salaries were no longer to spend money in shops or on travelling and many turned to shopping online. Some of this online browsing and shopping was on the many million crowdfunding campaigns that launched globally in 2020.
New categories of campaign emerged for example categories like PPE, face masks and sanitising products.
Crowdfunding Winning for the Environment
Indeed it could be said that crowdfunding towards the end of the year started to look like it was becoming a winner from the pandemic.
At ReadyFundGo we started to work with two fabulous ladies from Melbourne who during lockdown made great strides with their inspired new business Good-Edi. Catherine and Aniyo decided their mission was to reduce the number of plastic cups around the world going to landfill.
Living in Melbourne, the coffee capital of the world, they thought they would start with tackling the issue in Australia first. Pre Covid 2.4 million take away coffee cups a day were going to landfill.
Catherine and Aniyo won a place on the Sydney Taronga Zoo HATCH Accelerator and then went on to win the $50,000 prize.
They started a crowdfunding campaign to raise funds to buy the machine they needed to make their amazing innovative product – the edible coffee cup – in Melbourne.
Their crowdfunding campaign was a little different to most as most successful product based crowdfunding campaigns are for B to C products and opposed to B to B. Their main customers were cafes but as it was such a cool idea and many people wanted to be the first to try the edible cups that they used the campaign for a dual purpose – both raising funds and to share their story and get early supporters on board.
Catherine and Aniyo have now been able to order their machine and are making waves across the Australian coffee scene.
We have seen a few instances also where innovators have very cool ideas that by presenting their campaign on our platform they attract interest and investment from other sources to help them on their journeys. It can be very helpful for early stage founders to get calls from people interested in what they are doing offering to help.
One of the significant shifts has been the surge in interest in local manufacturing. Crowdfunding campaign creators have been looking for manufacturing options closer to home and some found some good local alternatives. Sometimes the price was a little higher but they have found more certainty in their supply chains and often more control over the process.
Manufacturing in Australia
Indeed in Australia manufacturing is being discussed more and more frequently and the Government has just launched the $1.5 billion Modern Manufacturing Strategy. Today we have just participated in the Australian Manufacturing Renaissance Panel and have been participating in the Sydney Hardware Accelerator.
Although more purchases have been made online there is also more competition and therefore it is even more crucial to build your marketing strategy and target audience before launching your campaign. Facebook ads have become more complex and more campaign creators are turning to specialists to help them target their ideal customers.
If you have an idea or project you are looking to get off the ground our advice is to start planning your campaign early. The most important part of a crowdfunding campaign is the work undertaken in the pre-campaign phase.
Send us an e mail at firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to book an initial consultation to help you formulate your plan or you may like to take an
online course where you can learn about crowdfunding in just one hour tonight.