Did you set yourself a goal for 2021 to turn your dream into a working project? Does your business need a boost? Or do you have a sustainable idea that just needs to get out there?
Crowdfunding might be able to help.
It goes without saying that crowdfunding in Australia, has changed the lives of many people, transformed businesses, and helped turn life-long dreams into projects. Its popularity is due to the fact that it offers more than just an alternative way to get funding. Crowdfunding allows you to;
- raise awareness for your project or build your brand,
- test a market, and gain insight into possible demand for your product or idea,
- access a powerful marketing tool,
- expand your target audience reach, and create a community of interest,
- or offer pre-orders for a product, if applicable.
Clearly, crowdfunding offers more than just ‘quick access to funds’. However, you should know that there is much more involved in starting a crowdfunding campaign than you probably realise.
The best place to start is with some myth-busting, here goes…
- “Crowdfunding is easy.” No, it takes commitment, time, and work.
- “Crowdfunding comes with a crowd…people are just waiting to back your campaign.” Nope, you need to do the pre-work to get people engaged and interested. You will need to find and tap into your target audience/potential backers before you launch your crowdfunding campaign.
- “You only need a great idea and a campaign page to succeed”. Wrong again, there is a lot of pre-launch work you need to do before you consider pushing the ‘go live’ button for your campaign.
- “Setting a really large target goal will help me raise more money.” Unfortunately not, we recommend that you set the lowest possible target goal, which will allow you to get your project going.
The important thing to note is that setting a lower goal makes your target seem more achievable to backers. Remember, it doesn’t cap the amount you can potentially raise and helps in the long run because people like to back a campaign that looks likely to succeed.
Working Hard for the Money!
After that dose of reality, how do the best crowdfunding campaigns do it?
Here is a checklist on the essential elements to creating and launching a campaign.
- Get a team together.
- Develop a pre-launch activity plan.
- Have a clear marketing strategy.
- Create your campaign page.
- Promote, inform & engage.
We believe getting the pre-work right before you launch a crowdfunding campaign can set you up for success, so here are a few more tips…
Getting a Team Together
Developing and running a successful crowdfunding campaign takes a lot of work – having a team, or at least two people can help share the workload. A team also allows you to draw on the strengths of others and tap into their networks.
Developing a Pre-Launch Activity Plan
Your pre-launch activity should focus on building a network of potential backers, and it is important to start working on this as soon as possible. Your plan should include activities like building email lists through existing websites or creating a landing page to get sign-ups. You should also work on building your social media presence early. The pre-launch phase is also where you should start to craft your story, work on your pitch video, and gather and create your creative assets – like images and photos.
During this phase, make building a community that is interested, engaged, and amped for the soon to be announced launch of your campaign, be your priority.
Setting a Clear Marketing Plan
While crowdfunding itself is a marketing tool, you need to commit to putting focus, effort, and action into promoting your campaign. Your marketing plan will be based on timing: pre-launch promotion, launch week promotions, weekly updates and follow ups after launch, and the campaign end.
You will need to consider the best marketing mix to reach potential backers – e.g., social media, paid advertising, launch events, influencer marketing, email marketing, PR, and so on. Every element of the marketing mix you use needs to communicate a clear call to action (what you want the target audience to do).
Creating an Attention-Grabbing Campaign Page
When it comes to creating your campaign page, there are a few key points to keep in mind. Firstly, it is important to put some thought into the copy. Try to make headlines intriguing or enticing. Secondly, your story should be concise, clear, and compelling. Remember you are trying to convince potential backers on why they should support your campaign. Next, put some thought into developing appealing rewards. The rewards you offer should give backers an undeniable reason to ‘open their wallets’ and back your campaign.
The bottom line is that the campaign page is your tool to attract the attention of potential backers – using images and videos is a valuable and worthwhile way to keep people engaged and interested.
We hope this post has helped create a realistic view of what is involved in developing and executing a crowdfunding campaign, and how you can best set up a campaign for success.
Looking for more…
Check out our online course: ReadyFundGo has a 1-hour short course on everything you need to know about starting a crowdfunding campaign and hitting your target goal. The course covers:
- Crowdfunding Basics
- Creating a Pitch Video
- Story Development
- Pre-Campaign Activities & Tasks
- Offering Enticing Rewards
- Promotional Ideas, and more…
Need assistance or advice tailored to your project or campaign idea…
Book a consultation session: ReadyFundGo offers a 30-minute consultation, where we can discuss how to get your crowdfunding journey off to a great start, brainstorm ideas, and provide tips on planning, building the crowd, and marketing specifically to your campaign.
Also, don’t forget to look at our Resources Page, for guides and FAQs.