The Crowdfunding Medley: More and Exciting Trends To Watch Out Behind every successful business is a story of struggles and failures. Success becomes attainable because entrepreneurs continuously work hard and never give up until they reach their ultimate goal – success. As far as the business world is concerned, success depends on the financial resources to a great extent. Fortunately, gone are the days where aspirants sacrifice their dreams due to financial incapabilities. This fact is all due to crowdfunding, the platform that opened the door of opportunities for many business owners. Fast forward to the present time, raising funds is no longer as stressful as how it used to be, provided that you properly execute an efficient crowdfunding marketing strategy. No worries, the primary purpose of this article is to provide you with helpful pieces of information about crowdfunding marketing that you can utilize for your business. Why Crowdfunding? Amid all the available marketing mediums to choose from, Is crowdfunding useful? Is it credible? You might ask why crowdfunding? Why not? For starters, crowdfunding marketing is an unorthodox replacement for traditional forms of marketing to get your business off the ground. If you are not using this platform yet, you are at risk of losing thousands or millions of dollars of risk-free income and millions of new customer. The same thing applies whether you are a funded startup looking to come out with a bang or an established company that uses traditional marketing approaches for launching their products or services. Taking for granted the benefits of crowdfunding will be your biggest regret, especially if your competitors are already utilizing the platform at its disposal. To further convince you why crowdfunding is a must for your venture, below are the significant influence of crowdfunding that you need to grind, asap! It taps into a vast marketplace that attracts new customers at a fraction of the cost and is growing exponentially every year. If you can take even a small piece of that pie by incorporating crowdfunding in your community, you will see a huge success. You will not only see a high cost per acquisition in your marketing efforts; crowdfunding will also elevate your success rate and drive more traffic to your site for no additional charge. It improves and validates a new product with customer feedback. According to Crowd Expert.com, the crowdfunding avenue is projected to flourish to $300 billion by 2025. Crowdfunding is a low-cost and low-risk way to do a market research and prove the viability of the product while seeing substantial revenue. It upsells anything and moves more products. After your marketing efforts closed and you are finalizing order information, you can interact and reach to your customers and offer them accessories and add-ons for the product or other relevant product lines that you introduce or just launched. It generates big revenue with less risk. Crowdfunding allows businesses to pre-sell their products in a 30–60 day grace period. This method helps drive a greater volume of orders with manufacturers. And you should know it that larger volume orders increase your margin and decrease the cost per unit. It positions your business for bigger deals. After you deliver a successful crowdfunding campaign, you can now prove that your product is in demand. This factor is helpful in closing larger volume deals with retailers, accelerate potential licensing deals or even sell your company. The Crowdfunding Medley To Try This Year – Marketers Take Heed! When you incorporate crowdfunding into your marketing strategy, your audience base changes. It happens because there is no restriction when it comes to the people who can give a monetary donation to your company via crowdfunding campaigns. It means that you need to target the right people and ensure that these people know where to go to support your crowdfunding campaign. For the majority of the companies, it happens on social channels. To cut to the chase, you’re not only going to sell your business, but you also have to sell the proposition of crowdfunding through incorporating it with other mediums, explain how it works, and inform the people where to find such resources. Crowdfunding and Email Outreach Email marketing can be a powerful method when incorporated with crowdfunding marketing. This idea stems from the fact that people check emails on a daily basis and have a high probability to answer if your project is interesting. For this collaboration, there are groups of people that you should include in your email target. Below are the following: Journalists Bloggers Influencers –Youtube stars, social media personalities, etc. The rule of thumb here is to keep your email concise and invite your audience to find out more. Most entrepreneurs keep making the mistake of copying and pasting the same “Contact us” email format in various forms. This scheme results in zero responses or disappointed responses. It is even applicable to different blogger outreach platforms. The ideal type of email marketing is conversational, persuasive, concise and well-tailored. Thus, you need to take your time to collect information about the audience base that you are sending your emails. You need to look for the following; Bloggers platforms. Blogs are great resources for topics that you can discuss in your email. Check the social media profiles of your audience and look for clues about their interests then mention it in your email. Find out your audience social engagements, like events that they have attended. You can comment on it which makes the email more personal. If you want to get responses from your audience, you need to make them like you first. Create a spreadsheet and track the person on your email list. Make a record of your audience’s interests, latest social media feeds or just about anything that is beneficial to your marketing campaign. Social Media Advertising If you want to generate more audience and speed up your crowdfunding marketing, you can pay ads in social media channels. You can start with Facebook, for all we know, this platform is every marketer’s dream because it allows a particular audience targeting. The right move is to provide compelling messages in front of the people who will be interested in your crowdfunding campaign. Think about relevance when deciding who to target. When it comes to social media advertising, there’s no such thing as one size fit’s all because each project is different. Hence, you should explore deeper and play more with different mediums. Guest Blogging Unbeknownst to most marketers and advertisers, guest blogging is a great match for crowdfunding marketing strategy. All you need to do is post content on a website which generates high traffic and is relevant to your product. The gameplan is to make these sites lets you post a link in the author byline. This strategy is becoming popular because it’s efficient and free. As a bonus, it’s a good medium in establishing your credibility before launching a campaign. There’s a blogger outreach service that you can employ to harness this medium. Advertising on Youtube Crowdfunding and Youtube advertising is a powerful duo in any marketing campaign. The best video ads in Facebook don’t look like ads, they tend to appear as a source of entertainment, and people like it. In the first place, people visit Youtube to entertain themselves. Thus, you need to harness your crowdfunding strategy and tailor it to users’ behaviors. Make sure your ad fits the taste of the audience and the website as well while conveying your message and inviting these people to take a single action. Provide Product Demos No matter the length of your video ads or the number of excellent images you take, nothing can beat usability. People will enjoy more if they can hold something out of your video ads. If your product is a software or an app, provide product demos. Set up stalls in related events and let the people experience your products for themselves. Take videos of people while using your product and use it for your video ads in social channels. The best method to persuade people to support your campaign is to show the positive response of individuals towards your product. Events While it is unarguable that crowdfunding is a digital way to raise money for business, going to the right events is still a foolproof method for the exponential increase of your audience. Determine the interests of your audience and look for events that they are more likely to attend. You can create a presentation, offer something in exchange for email addresses or get a stall to showcase your products. One inexpensive way to gain access to events is to pay a small fee to get your products mentioned in emails or send letters to the attendees. Crowdfunding Sources The best way to comprehend how crowdfunding changes your marketing game plan is to look up to successful crowdfunding campaigns online. Below are the crowdfunding platforms that marketers and entrepreneurs need to check out in 2017: Kickstarter Kickstarter is a popular name in crowdfunding avenue. It is arguably one of the most active platforms with over $2 billion in revenue since 2009. On an average day, Kickstarter community can pledge over $1.5 million worth of monetary support. This platform only supports creative projects and does not accept humanitarian, charity, and other personal projects. Kickstarter also implements an all-or-nothing deal. If the project doesn’t reach its goal, there’s no money to be collected, just a little risk for a bigger cause. Indiegogo Indiegogo is the first crowdfunding platform. It generated $1 billion since its foundation in 2007. Just last 2015, the platform supported 175,000 marketing campaigns from almost 2.5 people across 266 countries. Unlike Kickstarter, this platform has no suppression against humanitarian projects. It also provides flexible funding that allows businesses to collect donations even if they don’t reach your goals. Crowdfunder Crowdfunder is still at the infancy stage, but it already generated significant traction over the last few years. This platform allows the people to purchase stakes in companies in opposition to specific rewards. You can also make a profile for free. However, you need to pay for a monthly membership to begin earning funds. CircleUp CircleUp is an equity-based crowdfunding company based in San Francisco. It helps emerging brands to generate capital and develop their businesses. Since its foundation in 2011, CircleUp already helped 211 entrepreneurs which amount to $305 million. This platform has a good reputation when it comes to diligence in accepting companies and establishing relationships with them. Takeaway Crowdfunding is not only beneficial for startups and small businesses with financial incapacities. In fact, it’s the best way to validate new products, create substantial revenues and build community. Of course, the sooner you start with crowdfunding marketing, the better it will be for your business. Written by Patrick Panuncillon Patrick Panuncillon is the founder of LinkVista Digital Inc., a full grown digital marketing agency that provides quality digital and SEO services. Besides tending his business, he also spends his time studying about print advertising, blogger outreach campaigns, web design and social media marketing. Whenever his time permits, Patrick indulges on out-of-town travels to look for new inspirations for his business. You may connect with Patrick on LinkedIn.