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WM’s Quick Guide to Crowdfunding

Posted on 7.16.2012

Crowdfunding (not to be confused with crowdsourcing – although somewhat related) has rocketed to popularity of the past twelve months with numerous successes being reported from the likes of KickStarter and others. But relying on crowdfunding to fuel the growth of your projects and enterprise needs to be taken quite seriously to reap the many benefits.

Crowdfunding is essentially nothing more than a way to raise capital that involves requesting and receiving relatively small amounts of money from a large number of individuals. In some instances

While there are certainly instances when large amounts of money can be raised, crowdfunding is really ideal for smaller amounts. Success depends on many factors but you’ll need some formal guidance to really make it work. The following are a few quick tips for those interested in crowdfunding their next big idea. If you’ve had a project funded by the crowd, share your advice by commenting below.

Make Time for Crowdfunding: One of the most common mistakes in crowdfunding is not providing enough time to raise the necessary funds. Kickstarter and others recommend a time period of about 30 days on average.

Set The Funding Goal: The catch with crowdfunding is that if the funds raised don’t meet the goal, noone has to open their wallets and fund their projects. For this reason it’s important to set obtainable funding goals – start with the bare minimum you’ll need and stay there.

Provide a Compelling Story: Taking the time to craft not just a description of the project but a compelling story is for many what makes all the difference in their pursuit of crowdfunding success. Take it a step further and produce videos or any related collateral material which supports the background story and compels people to invest – if not for the equity, then solely for the feeling that they play a part in something important.

Invest in Rewards and Perks: Nothing compels a likely funder more that what’s in it for them. From an actual product sample to brand schwag like t-shirts or guaranteed beta-invites, the most successful campaigns are often those with the very best perks.

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