Crowdfunding – a new era in raising funds
This evolution in fund raising is taking the financial risk out of running that creative project or idea that you've been battling with.
Here are 12 crowdfunding tips from Pozible, the crowdfunding platform for the creative industry.
1. Plan your project and set yourself a goal
It is very important to set yourself a funding target. This target should be realistic and achievable. Typically you have a time limit to raise the funding target, so we recommend you set your goal to the minimum you need to get your project started. There is usually no upper limit to how much you can raise using the “all-or-nothing” crowdfunding model.
2. You're inviting people to be a part something
You should never feel awkward, afraid or shy to ask someone to support your creative project or idea. You are not a charity and you are not begging for money. You are inviting people to be part of something great. A life experience they should appreciate.
Look around you. Is there someone who might be able to help with your crowdfunding effort? We're not talking about financial support. Is there someone or some organisation with the creative skills or expertise to compliment you and your project, giving your project the best chance of success?
People tend to follow a trend. So imagine how valuable it would be to have a celebrity, respected industry leader or publisher endorse your project. You should exploit any exposure and endorsement you receive for your project because this builds credibility. This is a key focus.
5. Learn from others
Do some research before you start your crowdfunding effort. Crowdfunding has become a point of discussion online. There are loads of articles and advice from people who have been successful and more importantly, from people who have been unsuccessful.
6. Be Sociable
Make the most of every opportunity to tell people about your project. This might take you out of your comfort zone, but you will never know who you might meet. Put yourself out there and meet new people. Learn about upcoming events, festivals and local community activities – find as many ways to talk about your project and idea.
7. Share and connect online
Crowdfunding platforms have been developed to integrate with your online social networks ie. Facebook, Twitter, Myspace, etc. Be active on your personal page and constantly remind people about your project. Give people updates about your project and always encourage friends to share your project. Try not to sound needy.
8. Another day, another dollar
No one said raising funds for your project was easy and it takes passion and commitment to be successful. Don't expect your project to reach its funding goal the very moment you tell the world. You need to build momentum for your project and this takes dedication. Keeping in constant contact with your audience demonstrates your determination. People appreciate this and typically more people will support your effort.
9. Say thank you
This might seem obvious, but never forget to show your appreciation. A personal message of thanks and recognition can go a long long way.
10. Without an audience, you’ve got very little.
Without an audience you've next to nothing, so take an interest in them and get to know them. It's worth your while. Simply, ask your supporters and followers what they would find most valuable in helping fund your project. This might simply be a signed album or postcard.
11. Reward your supporters
Be creative with the tangible and intangible perks your supporters receive in return for funds. These are incentives for people to support your project and can be tailored for different groups of people. eg. A $5 postcard reward for a friend or a $30 signed copy of the album reward for a passionate fan.
12. A story to tell
So, what makes you're project different from the next one? Explain to your audience what makes your project unique and share where the idea for your project came from. Everyone has a story to tell and believe it or not, people want to learn about your stories. People need to connect with you and this is one of the most important ways to do this.