We previously provided tips for launching a crowdfunding campaign, but getting the funding your project desires is only half the battle. What happens during the process and once you get backing will impact the public’s perception on the project and, in turn, your company.

Best Practices for Your Crowdfunding Campaign

1. Market Your Project

One of the most important things to do when receiving your funding is getting your name out there to more than just your contributors. It could be using public relations to distribute a press release and get attention that way. It could be using SEO to optimize your project’s website and/or crowdfunding page, so more people can find you online. It could be utilizing social media to share your company’s story and updates with followers, as well as interact with potential customers.

Ideally, it would be a combination of all three since they’re all important components to marketing. A recent CrowdfundingPR blog listed several bloggers, publications and influencers that you can reach out to.

2. Provide Reciprocal Value

We talked about this in our last blog, but it’s a bonus for crowdfunding backers when they receive something for donating their money. One successful crowdfunding example that offered rewards is the Veronica Mars Movie Project. It promised backers that they would get an exclusive T-shirt, a digital version of the movie and more, depending on how much they contributed. The result? They received $5,702,153 when their goal was only 2 million dollars.

Have you seen the video marketing that this project did to spread the word even more? We’re sure the cast from the show appearing in this video also helped the project get the backing it needed!

3. Avoid Overpromising

The biggest downfall and what brings on the most controversy for crowdfunded projects is when the company overpromises to their backers and they can’t deliver. One example is the Sound Band speakerless headset, developed by Hybra Advance Technology.

Their prototype was a big hit in 2010 when they started their Kickstarter campaign to bring the Sound Band to market. After receiving $547,125 (exceeding their $175,000 goal), an estimated product delivery date of December 2013 was promised. They claimed to be production ready, but there have been numerous issues getting to market. Sound Band has not been brought to market as of present.

4. Communicate With Backers

People who fund your project want to hear updates, whether it’s about how well production is going or if something is awry. It’s hard to admit when things aren’t going right, but people who donated money deserve to know what’s happening. Using Sound Band once again, their response time was very slow to their 3,292 backers, who are outraged over not seeing any product progress. In response, they voiced their opinions on the project’s Kickstarter comments section.

5. Use the Money Logically

Backers expect the people running projects to spend the money wisely. There have been cases where controversy has brewed because of the misuse of funding. The biggest example of this is Amanda Palmer. Take a look at her campaign video about her album, artwork and tour.

This video inspired backers to raise more than her required $1 million in 2012. Palmer even offered local horn and string players the opportunity to play a few songs with her band, but spent all of the funding on producing her album, personal debt and costs for travel and mailing out rewards. This left no money for the players, creating outrage online. Palmer eventually rectified it by paying them, but the outrage still lives on by showing up on Google Page One for searches of her name.

6. Show Proof

The biggest way to win over your audience is to prove that the project is credible. This could be through telling the story of how the project came about and what exactly backers will be funding. An example of a project that did this was role-playing game Project Eternity, which raised almost $4 million (over 3 times the amount they asked for).

Credibility can also be granted through influencer endorsement. This can be achieved should you have finalized samples to send out for review. Identifying key influencers and offering them a review unit of your product can be a great way to generate buzz about your crowdfunding campaign.

Take for example Cocomama, a gluten-free food brand looking to expand their product line through a Kickstarter campaign. To generate buzz, they sent out samples of their existing product. As a result, influencers like The Roxx Box gave their endorsement upon trying the product.

What crowdfunding campaign best practices are important to you? Let us know in the comments below!

 

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