Crowdfunding is an excellent way to get your business off the ground and one which has risen to prominence over the past 10 years.
Crowdfunding is an excellent way to get your business off the ground and one which has risen to prominence over the past 10 years. Since Kickstarter, a public-benefit corporation, launched in 2009, it’s become influential in allowing businesses and products to start up and grow.
Whether you’re a local food truck looking to expand into a bricks-and-mortar restaurant or a manufacturer looking to scale up to mass-production, a carefully executed crowdfunding campaign will advance your development
The role of social media marketing is crucial in the success of a crowdfunding campaign, as your audience – potential backers – need to know and connect with your brand before committing to an investment.
Jab, jab, hook…
To drive tangible results for brands we utilise a ‘jab, jab, hook’ strategy in our campaigns. This ensures that your audience has multiple touch points with your brand or product before you try and generate a direct sale.
The likelihood of someone making a pledge on Kickstarter or committing to an investment in your brand at the first point of contact is low to none, which is why it’s a necessity to build familiarity with your brand within your audience.
You can then retarget them with specific follow up content, which will be designed to draw your audience in further and then utilise conversion adverts to drive acquisition.
Hearts and minds
Capturing the hearts and minds of your prospective investors is imperative in converting them to actual investors.
This is done by seeding out bespoke content which generates an emotional connection between your brand and your target audience. You need to get them to buy into your business figuratively, or they’ll never part ways with their own money for it.
In short: If you can garner a following of enough people who genuinely believe in your product or brand, you’ll have no trouble securing backers.
Rules of thumb
When starting up as a crowdfunded brand or product, there are several stages which should be followed – think of them as 10 essential steps to crowdfunded success.
1) Launch with a Kickstarter, and if needed extend to Indiegogo (a popular crowdfunding website) - people are much more likely to pay on a legitimate site and the network effects of being seen on Kickstarter can be huge.
2) Get lots of traffic to your Kickstarter on day one with a viral queue. - an online queue, which allows people to sign up for access to something – such as a service or the ability to purchase a product. The lower your number in the queue, the closer you are to the front. It’s not uncommon for queues to have prizes mixed in with them – for example a discount for the first 100 people. You can also queue jump on some platforms, by referring others to join the queue.
3) Build a Facebook group around your idea - This will be your central “hub” for discussion, marketing and helping with customer service questions. It’s essential you be seen to CARE about your customers, especially when building a rapport with them.
4) Research all your competitors fully. Buy their products and go through their buyer’s journey – how easy is it to buy? How much do they charge? How long does it take to deliver you the product?
5) Research and build relationships with other successful Kickstarter projects An established business interacting with you will work wonders for your brand image and increase your popularity. with customers.
6) On a new Facebook account, like all your competitors’ pages and look out for the different ads they run, then copy the ones that generate the most engagement for your own strategy.
7) Make at least one very strong video to run alongside your launch. Aim to include at least one of either humour, breaking a belief pattern or showing them a better way, surprise or shock.
8) Surround yourself with smart people – you’ll be able to bounce ideas off them and they’ll advise you on what to do based on their skills and experience.
9) Deliver your products fast and make sure you follow through on the pledge rewards you offer on Kickstarter Prioritise any queries or complaints,– great customer service is essential in building a solid reputation.
10) Have a secret ‘sauce’ to get traffic. This could be promoting through influencers, friends, Reddit, or organic social media content.