Crowdfunding is not free money. You can’t just create a Kickstarter or Indiegogo project page and watch the numbers roll in – although we all wish it were so! Anyone who has launched a crowdfunding campaign understands just how much research, planning, strategy, and time goes into creating a great crowdfunding campaign. They also know it’s A TON OF WORK.
As a video production studio, we’ve loved working on crowdfunding campaigns. A great video for your Kickstarter project however, is only one piece to the crowdfunding maze. We want to be a part of successful projects just as much as you want your project to succeed. Here’s an overview of the different aspects of your campaign you will need to consider before you dive in.
A great crowdfunding campaign is about the product AND the purpose. Nobody cares about what you are making if you don’t show them you care more than anyone! You are rallying people together who believe in you. Your fans want to be a part of your vision. They want to be a part of something that is bigger than themselves, and you’re the one making it happen.
STRATEGY AND PLANNING
Welcome to your new full-time job. Once you launch, it’s going to get crazy so give yourself the materials and resources you need to finish the marathon. Plan ahead and give it everything you’ve got. Start with researching your options. There are a lot of different crowdfunding platforms out there today and finding the right one for your project is the first step. Read more about it in our previous post, “How to Find the Best Crowdfunding Platform for You.”
SET YOUR FUNDING GOAL
How many people do you know that are likely invest in your idea AND who do those people know who might be able to help? Investigate which crowdfunding projects in your industry have been successful. Different industries have different funding averages. Take a hard look at your minimum costs and be honest with yourself. Make sure you also allow yourself a cushion that allows for your platform’s cut and project’s shipping costs, which add up quickly. Support your funding goal with real math and real people.
THE WRITTEN PITCH
Your goal in this section is to build trust with your audience. Start by creating a crowdfunding narrative for your project. This is the story about why you are raising money and the experiences that helped you get started. Construct a realistic and detailed budget. Graphs, and infographics transform a run-of-the-mill campaign into a serious force to be reckoned with. Elaborate on your value proposition telling people why they will love your product and the positive impact it will have on their life. Proofread. Break up long blocks of copy with proper headings and professional photos. Think about quality over quantity and watch out for filler words. Edit to keep it direct and succinct. Grab people’s attention and make them eager to know more.
THE CROWDFUNDING VIDEO
This is our favourite part. Your crowdfunding video should be between 2-3 minutes. It needs to tell people WHAT you do and WHY you’re doing it. You have a very small window to get your point across and make people believe in you, and that’s why video is so powerful. You can say a lot in a short period of time with video. We will do an entirely separate post on crowdfunding videos next. For now, here’s an example of a successful campaign we worked on with iHeart Physiological Age system that ran earlier last year on Indiegogo.
Make sure you hit this one on the target. You’ll want professional photos that show your brand, your product, and your rewards to your potential funders. Look for images that create a good thumbnail and make you want to click on it. Your photos should always be polished and shareable.
Funders don’t just want to hand over their money and support to your campaign and never hear from you again. They are giving money to your Kickstarter or Indiegogo campaign because they want to be part of the process with you. Everyone wants to be a part of something meaningful, growing, and successful. Plan out a sequence of updates in advance. Let people know how the project is advancing and how grateful you are that they’ve chosen to be a part of it. It’s a great way to build enthusiasm and keep people talking, which could also mean more funders for you. Give people an opportunity to ask questions and share your updates.
Both Kickstarter and Indiegogo are rewards based crowdfunding platforms. Pick rewards that make sense for your campaign. Make sure that you can afford to give away and ship what you are offering. Choose rewards that also benefit you. This is a great opportunity to create products that help further your brand and get creative. Narrow down who your ideal customer is and what kinds of rewards they would most value. Ask yourself, “Who would buy this?”
LAUNCHING & MARKETING
Prepare yourself with the right tools and give yourself enough time to build a following. Make sure you’ve connected with those people on a personal level before you try to shake them down for money. Don’t just shout to the masses and hope people take notice. A personal approach to your fundraising makes all the difference. Tell your friends and family directly what you are working on. Build your email list with the right people who care about your idea. Draft your press release for media outreach. Ask each person specifically to support you. Let them know how grateful you are and how much their participation in your crowdfunding campaign matters to you. The more you draft ahead of time, the more you’ll be able to manage in the thick of it. If this isn’t your jam, hire someone.
HAVE A BACKUP PLAN
The final hours can be a crazy stressful and difficult. Watching projects crawl to a halt at the final buzzer is heartbreaking. Can you push your project over the finish line? Have you reached out to other investors who care about your idea? Crowdfunding is a tremendous opportunity for a lot of business, but don’t let it be your only option. Get creative and think like an entrepreneur. There is always a way.
Got a project the world needs to see? Tell us all about your idea, and we’ll let you know how we can help share your story through video.