When is your project really finished?
Coolest Cooler, a portable cooler complete with speakers, blender, USB charger, bottle opener, and flashlight, became the highest-grossing Kickstarter campaign in the campaign’s (short) history. crowdfunding platform. No less than $13.2 million from 63,000 people. And that they only asked for $50,000.
It turned out that they were wrong about the original price of the product, the Chinese factory where they produced the mixer motors was having problems, and the cost of manufacturing was increasing. Instead of sending the coolers they already had in stock to the people who funded the adventure, they decided to list it for sale on Amazon. Supporters of the project followed them to Amazon to criticize them.
And now they’re asking each person who supported them $97 more to fund production and ship the product.
And all this the most successful campaign…
The most important question to ask yourself is: When will my product be ready…including delays and unforeseen events? About 75% of projects that organize crowdfunding campaigns through platforms like Kickstarter and Indigogo are late when it comes to completing their product. Entrepreneurs who have already gone through the campaign recommend setting a realistic date for launching the campaign three months in advance…at least.
The best way to predict how long it will take you to prepare the campaign before launching it is to calculate how long it will take you and your team to prepare. Working on a project and already having a functioning marketing department is not the same as having to bundle tasks. It’s also not the same that one person from your team can spend time because it takes time to prepare the campaign:
1. Prepare an email list: personal network of contacts, networking, social media… and send them an email explaining how they can help you raise money for your campaign (e.g. share a text on Facebook or Twitter).
2. Make a list of communication media.
3. Content design of the campaign: What do you want to tell and how, because you have to prepare an explainer video because you also have to explain what your product is about, what you want the money for and what you will get in return.
4. Campaign Content Execution.
5. Design of a social media advertising campaign to support your crowdfunding strategy.
The key to the success or failure of a crowdfunding campaign lies in your ability to communicate it: email promotions, social media, PR campaigns, events… These are six of the methods that work best when it comes to it going to communicate your launch of a campaign and you need “investors” or help to get “followers”:
1. Mailing Lists. Many startups start by sending an email to everyone who has already taken an interest in their company: beta testers, newsletter subscribers…
2. Your personal network of contacts. From relatives to people you know in associations you are a member of, clubs, other startups, organizers you have worked with… The idea is to contact them in advance to notify them and their support in the days leading up to the launch of the campaign.
3. Communication and Public Relations. If you have a communications agency, fabulous if not:
– Make a list of the media you want to appear in. You don’t have to be realistic here. Of course, if you want to date Techcrunch or Entrepreneurs, find the contacts. The idea is to offer these media somewhat exclusive information before the rest of the world. Most of the journalists’ contacts are online in their own media. The ideal is to contact them two or three weeks before launching the campaign, the entrepreneurs suggest.
– Correct a list of media in your industry. We will never insist enough on the importance of niches in communications (especially digital communications). You can contact them a week before.
– Prepare a list of all the means of communication that you understand and are likely to pay attention to, and those that don’t. It won’t work, but it has to be done. The morning of the launch (take into account time differences when going to the media in different countries; in Spain, for example, we leave the editorial offices when Latin America is awake).
4. Document your trip. Via social networks: photos on Instagram, tweets on Twitter, blog posts… If you don’t have a blog, it can be interesting. You can get subscribers to blog updates (and therefore potential contacts).
5. Participation in events. Leveraging the launch of the campaign helps many entrepreneurs attend events to spread the word. Support this support with your presence on social networks.
6. The right content at the right time. Your content will speak for you. The product has to be attractive, but you also have to sell it attractively.
7. Promotional Campaign on Facebook.
All the entrepreneurs we consulted insist that the main materials you will work with in the campaign are the video, the text, the photos and the rewards.
1. In less than three minutes, you must explain what your goal and product are. “We want to get funds to improve X on our product Y that does Q and solves problem V.”
2. The first ten seconds of the video, as the Kickstarter and Indiegogo user guides affirm, are essential to making a good impression on your campaign’s potential followers.
3. In the videos, it is highly recommended that the people who came up with the idea appear.
4. You must show what exactly the product does.
5. Make it clear exactly what you want: «Donate at least X money to get Y».
1. The most important thing about your product should come first: what’s new, the problem it solves… it depends on the product.
2. It must be short. solution and problems.
3. Explain what exactly the money will be spent on.
4. Also, the more technical specifications you can include, the better.
Combine aseptic photos of the product (e.g. on a white background) with photos of the product where it will be used and photos of the product being used by real people (or animals, we don’t know who you are) to speak above…).
1. You have to be clear: you pay so much and get so much.
2. Offer different prices: for people who have little money and want to help and for those who can invest more.
3. Use the terms “limited edition”, “exclusive units”.
4. Try to create an emotional connection to the product.
Most campaigns receive the highest number of microinverters in the first three days. The result you get on day one, says one entrepreneur, is usually pretty indicative of the bottom line of the campaign.
However, you can try to make new calls to the media and let them know what’s new about the project. This should be intensified especially in the last week before the end of the project.
All crowdfunding platforms have an update section on the campaign page that allows you to contact your followers but also serves to generate information that you can use to request help again from all contacts and media that have not paid attention to you.
If you are looking for microinverters Don’t stop reading for your crowdfunding project this article with more practical advice.