Crowdfunding has become a way for entrepreneurs and startups to raise funds for their latest ventures and gather feedback from potential customers and backers. Since 2008, Indiegogo has become one of the powerhouses, launching more than 800,000 innovative ideas, for entrepreneurs to launch their campaigns and enter a large network filled with backers and supporters that truly love discovering new creative and technological projects.
In this article, we will look at:
1) The benefits of Crowdfunding
2) Planning Your Campaign
The benefits of crowdfunding on Indiegogo
With so many crowdfunding websites existing at the minute, why should entrepreneurs choose Indiegogo?
Benefit One: Funding
Entrepreneurs faced some major difficulties in the past when trying to get money to secure funding They had the tedious task of having to apply for small business loans, pitch the venture capitalists, use their own money, get a loan from loved ones, among other things. Crowdfunding has allowed startups to get the funding they need quicker and with the support of an engaged community.
It is also easier on Indiegogo because there is such a wide range of fields that can be presented on the platform and they offer flexible funding which means that no matter what, campaigns will receive the money raised regardless of whether or not the campaign reached its goal.
Benefit Two: Validation
Venture capitalists use crowdfunding platforms as a way to monitor projects with big potential. It is a very powerful tool in the startup world and is now faster, more scalable, and available to anyone that is trying to bring a new idea to life.
Benefit Three: Market Insights
The traditional way from concept to market can be very time consuming and expensive. Crowdfunding can be a more efficient way to gather feedback and find valuable marketing insights. Insights from potential clients can help innovators refine their ideas, think through their strategies, and enter the market with solutions that make a bigger impact.
Indiegogo provides a bit more data for campaigns with the ability to track Facebook and Google ads. It also gives companies access to their backers list immediately so that they can tailor their email marketing campaigns effectively while Kickstarter does not until the campaign ends.
Benefit Four: Marketing & Awareness
Crowdfunding introduces an idea to fans around the globe and exponentially grows the market potential for any campaign. An idea or concept can spread within seconds with thoughtful marketing and an engaged audience.
Planning Your Campaign
Step One: Prep for success with research and a clear plan
It is very important that you do your research and look at successful campaigns because behind every campaign is a thoughtful plan for every stage of the project. A great idea is just the beginning and every successful entrepreneur is quite deliberate about their timing. Companies like Pressfarm are good at this.
Step Two: Launch with the first 30% already in place
While you should have your launch fully planned out, it is possible to build important early momentum by launching with just 30% of your crowdfunding goal because campaigns that reach 30% of their goal within the first few days are more likely to exceed their ultimate crowdfunding goal.
Step Three: Use email outreach and social media marketing early and often
Compared to social media posts or public relations efforts, email marketing allows startups to quantify how many potential supporters were reached through your message and how many responded, which lets you know whether your engagement efforts were successful.
You can grow your email list with offline and online activities. Some examples of that include; going to events, making it easy to sign up for more information, creating a newsletter, and running a contest. You should find events that are related to your product, service, social cause, or creative project. Exchange information and follow up with your new contacts directly after the event. You should also make it easy for prospective backers to sign up because they might not if the process is too complicated or time-consuming. Newsletters are also a great way to reward your audience for signing up for your list by offering them engaging, useful content.
Step Five: Build a host committee
Identify 10-15 trusted supporters to join your project as a host committee and they will help you spread the word. Once you have formed your team of advocates, you need to start thinking of your network because each group of people will support your campaign in different ways.
You can think of them as different layers and divide them into your immediate network, your community network, and potential backers. Your immediate network is your family members, close friends, and colleagues. They support your idea because they trust and believe in you. Your community network is the people that are right outside your closest circle, they can be acquaintances, colleagues from local organizations, or other professionals that you may have met from different events. Lastly, potential backers are the members of your target audience. Your project may solve a problem, engage their imagination, or improve their lives. They are the type of people who will support your goal of bringing a new and innovative solution or creation to the world.
Step Six: Strategize and budget for fulfillment pre-campaign
If owners forget to create a workable plan for fulfillment, even the most successful campaign can fall. When your campaign finishes, you need to get products out and figure out the cost of shipping. Plan for fulfillment by thinking about where your backers are and do your research about the best ways of shipping your products to them.
You need to remember that it is all about building relationships and maintaining them. You have collected the email addresses through different methods, grown your circle of community members, built up your social media presence through effective social media marketing, and have amplified your message. Now it is time to use everything that you have to obtain to develop relationships.
You need to be responsive to inquiries, answer questions, request feedback, take suggestions, and encourage two-way dialogue with your supporters. They are the ones that are essential to your journey from concept to market. Your community is your greatest asset, so you need to make it a point to follow up and keep them informed at every stage of the project.
Step 6: Post-Crowdfunding Options
With Indiegogo, campaign owners can choose to employ InDemand, which is a platform that is an extension of a regular crowdfunding campaign that makes it easier for creators to keep raising funds after their campaign ends. It also lets creators continue to grow their community, reach new audiences, and receive ongoing exposure on the Indiegogo platform. They are only eligible for InDemand if they meet their goal by the deadline and are in good standing with Indiegogo.
Kickstarter users can also transition to InDemand, but they must contact the Indiegogo team and they will help them transition their campaign over to Indiegogo. Once their campaign is set up, they can edit their story, perks, payment details, etc.
Indiegogo is a powerful tool for crowdfunding in any project and there are many stages that companies need to go through to have a successful campaign. Companies must understand how important the community is to any campaign and they are the ones that will boost every effort the company has put into the create a product or service that anyone needs.