Crowdfunding is a valuable form of marketing that can create an opportunity to raise money quickly without a major upfront investment. For this reason, many people are choosing this route when pitching their product via the internet.
A simple way to explain the act of crowdfunding is raising money from a large crowd of people to fund a project, product, or venture and get it off of the ground.
I wrote a book back in 2015 called Keys To The Crowd: Unlocking the Power of Crowdfunding, which is a short read that shares my FUND formula.
This formula was designed to create successful crowdfunding campaigns, and each letter in the acronym stands for a key component in the process.
Not only can this be used for crowdfunding, but it can also be applied to anything else in business.
So what does F U N D stand for anyway?
Let’s start with “forethought.”
This part of the formula is the preparation you have to put into your campaign.
Don’t underestimate the time it takes to have success with raising large amounts of money. You need AT LEAST two months to prepare and make sure that you have everything ready and in place for a launch.
You will need to prepare your audience, Facebook ads, email list, social media following, the buzz around your campaign, and so on.
Take the time to get people excited about what you have to offer, and build up that anticipation.
When we did the campaign for Ambitious Adventures, I spent a full month trying to find entrepreneurs to feature on our show.
I was reaching out to so many people and getting on so many different calls. Because of that, by day one we had raised around $20,000.
We were able to raise such a significant amount of money because we had people ready to back what we were doing, and we had created a following that we had promoted to for that specific launch.
The forethought process consists of putting in all of the work ahead of time so that once you launch you already have 30-40% of your total funding allocated.
Having those people committed early on means that you’re already on the path to reaching and even exceeding your goals.
Preparing for your campaign is like preparing for a marathon. If you’re going to run a marathon, you’re going to train for it beforehand. You’re not going to just show up the day of and expect to crush it.
Think of crowdfunding from the same perspective.
If you show up the day of the launch without putting in the necessary work, you’re going to fail.
Some people look at a number like $10,000 and underestimate the time and effort it takes to raise that kind of money. Unless you already have a lot of committed people on board and you have something really big to offer, the average person does not raise that much money.
The moral of the story is… prepare for your campaign ahead of time!
The next component of the formula is to utilize your marketing plan.
Focus on choosing the right tactics and always promote to the max.
Let’s talk about the Freedom Journal campaign that we did with John Lee Dumas. We had him reach out to all of his past guests (about 1,000 at the time) and ask them to be a part of the launch team promoting through their email lists.
Out of those people, we had a little less than 100 actually promote through their email list on day one. We also had 20 podcast shows that JLD went on, which launched on day one and two of the actual campaign.
Our main objective was to have A LOT of promotion in place.
We also took advantage of the fact that JLD has a daily podcast show and used that in our marketing strategy. 33 different guests were brought onto the show to talk about a past experience where they had set and accomplished a goal.
The Freedom Journal was designed to help people set and accomplish their goals every day, so each guest talked about how the journal helped them and why it was a great product.
This tactic served as 33 days of testimonials being promoted to his massive audience, which ended up being one of the best things we did for marketing his campaign.
You need to utilize a marketing plan!
It takes more than just a tweet out or a share to really push and promote your campaign. It’s a non-stop grind, and you have to dedicate the time it takes to really show up with what you’re doing.
The next area you should be focusing on is the narrative.
By telling a great story, you can get people to believe in you, follow you, and essentially buy from you. The best way to do this is through video.
People can watch video content that you create and not only consume it, but even experience an emotional connection to it that grabs their attention. Whether you’re making them laugh or making them cry, you have to give the audience a real reason to act and have the desire to back you.
Not too long ago we filmed a video for a product that recently launched called the Good Roll.
In our video, we featured the main components of the product along with a funny introduction to grab the audience’s attention.
Create a great video to share on your crowdfunding page that tells a story. By connecting with people through an awesome video and compelling copy, you’re creating a reason for people to want to give you their money and support you.
The final ingredient in this formula is all about delivering value.
People don’t just want to give you money – it doesn’t work that way. You have to give them something in return. If you look at some of the largest crowdfunding campaigns in history, one of them was for the Coolest Cooler.
Their first launch was around Christmas time since they thought it would do well with people doing holiday shopping. But, since it was during the winter nobody took a huge interest in the product and the campaign failed.
The second launch of the product on Kickstarter was done during the summer, and they ended up raising 13.2 million dollars. At the time, this was the largest crowdfunding campaign in history, and it was because they had such a great product.
You need to have something great to offer your audience.
This way, when they see your product they will feel like it’s a no-brainer to want to back your campaign.
I’ve spent the last three and a half years developing this formula, applying it, and living by it.
Try it out for yourself and discover the success it can bring to you in crowdfunding, business, and so many other areas of your life.