In today’s day and age, finding incremental funding for your business has never been easier. Nearly every small business or startup these days will consider crowdfunding at some point in their journey as a potential means to secure needed funding.
But what is crowdfunding anyway?
Crowdfunding is raising money by pitching your business idea, product or venture to the masses and potential customers via the use of the internet. Made famous by crowdfunding-focused websites such as Kickstarter, it’s a ridiculously simple yet oh-so-brilliant idea. You take your idea, pitch it to people, and hope they put together small amounts of money to fund it in exchange for perks, discounts, etc.
However, as with anything, crowdfunding comes with its own set of pros and cons, with the biggest con having to do with its success rate. The truth is, organizing successful crowdfunding can be really hard. But don’t fret, as there are some useful steps to make sure you can convince enough everyday people to fund your idea and get it off of the ground:
1. Choose your platform.
Probably the easiest yet also one of the more important factors to consider, choosing where you pitch your idea can either make or break it. Thankfully, there are various crowdfunding platforms available today. The kicker, however, is not all platforms are created equal, so make sure you curate platform-specific pitches that will cater to your preferred target market and audience.
2. Show, don’t tell. This one is very basic.
You can promise investors the coolest gadget you can think, but can you show it to them? Quit speaking and start showing. Give them an inside look at the process, a prototype, something to give them an idea of what they’re putting their money in. Doing so will not only make them believe you but also make them more involved, creating a stronger business bond, something today’s demographic demand from products.
3. Understand (and know) your target audience.
Before you create any marketing materials or post your campaign live to the masses, do the research needed to become familiar with your target audience. Know what makes them tick, what they want, and try to see from their perspective if what you’re offering will benefit their lives.
4. Make a day-to-day plan and set goals.
Of course, you can’t start a basketball game without a strategy, nor go into battle without the right equipment. The same goes for crowdfunding. Form a plan that you can follow, and set goals that you need to achieve by a certain time period, like the target amount of funds, etc.
5. Accept feedback.
More often than not, you will receive feedback for your product. Don’t be discouraged though, as listening to feedback will help improve your product down the line, as well as show you in a more positive light. Listening to feedback also gets you more personal with your audience and will help you create an authentic relationship between you and your market.
Lastly, understand that this is just one of the many ways you can use to fund your product, and it’s not suited for every type. With that being said, however, it provides a lot of opportunities for you and your idea, so learn what you can, and use everything as a learning experience.
(Featured image by DepositPhotos)
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