One of the entrepreneurs behind a success story shares their recipe with current and future crowdfunders.
It was a lot of work, requiring constant updates in social media and with friends, family, etc. You don't sit back and watch the money roll in. Some hints:
1. Bootstrapping, or starting with your own cash is actually stage one of crowd funding which hardly start-ups want to explore....They resist, all they look at is external money first while a known crowd funding example of a "joint bootstrapped" business works well for low investment start-ups. We started first, developed a concept that people could see and relate to.
2. Do your homework on your project and post a complete as possible proposition. Images and video works great and we have had very positive comments on this. Make this work for you. Contributors and investors will first be attracted by images. If this attracts them they will look at the text you added to describe the project.
3. Very few projects get crazy amounts of money. Most don't. StartMe is an all-or nothing proposition, so adjust your goal accordingly.
4. Be very clear as to what the money you get will be used for. Make sure your rewards are about equal in retail value to the donation. Send updates and thanks regularly.
5. Sponsor a project or two. It's good karma and shows you are an active member. Other members can see of you have contributed to projects. They will be hesitant to contribute to someone who has not contributed.
Here are a few important crowdfunding tips from StartMe, the crowdfunding platform for South African Entrepreneurs and creative projects.
1. It all starts with a plan
Plan your project and be clear on what it is that you want to achieve. Set yourself a realistic funding target. Funders are not going to be funding anything that seems unplanned with a unrealistic funding target.
2. Be proud of what you are doing
Don’t ever feel, afraid or shy to ask someone to support your creative project or idea. You are certainly not begging for money. You are giving people the opportunity of being part of something creative and unique. You are also offering clear rewards for being part of your project. Show confidence in your project if you want other to believe and contribute. Share your idea wherever possible.
3. Work Together
You don't have to do it alone. If you know of someone or some organisation who can support you with creating your project on StartMe with great writing skills or perhaps through helping with your video then don’t be afraid to ask? If you want you project to be successful then you need to go all out to ensure that this happens.
4. Show Effort
Crowdfunding is not a magic solution where your project will all of sudden attract funding from thousands. Successful campaigns have sown that it takes effort from the project creator. Show those that you are hoping to impress with your project that you are committed to your project and have put the effort in. Show a prototype of your design, make a video, be innovative.