The art and science of creating technology is very different from the art of marketing. Though one may think that great technology markets and "sells itself", the truth is quite contrary. There are numerous examples in past and recent history where the best or even greatest invention never made it anywhere because the forces bringing it to market were weak or insufficient.
I've been writing a lot about social media and crowdfunding lately, and this guest post is no exception. With so many networks saturating our online experience, it's sometimes hard to see which ones you need and which ones you can do without. With crowdfunding, though, you need the big three: Twitter, Facebook, and Google Plus.
Much the way you shouldn't go about crowdfunding any project by yourself, you really shouldn't expect to reach a substantial goal of, say, $30,000 or more without doing the proper preliminary work, and one of the most important, yet highly overlooked aspects of this homework is building your audience first.
It's important to have a skillful and dedicated crowd, and it's just as important to keep them happy. A happy crowd strives to produce a higher quality and quantity of work for you and your clients. Chances are if they've chosen to work in a crowd, they already like what they do; make sure they love where they're working.
I peruse a lot of crowdfunding campaigns in the course of a single day. Some of them catch my attention immediately. Not only that, but they hold onto it and occasionally make me reach into my pocket, pull out my debit card, and tap in the 16 digits it takes to become a proud contributor.
Last month, I held a seminar at the 2nd Annual Golden Door International Film Festival of Jersey City on my three Ps for a successful indie film campaign, that of a solid pitch, some cool perks, and plenty of promotion. As I got into that last section, I asked how many people in the audience have a Facebook and Twitter account?" A few people raised their hands. Then I asked how many of them are active on those networks, posting content relevant to indie film at least once a day. Some hands went down.
Crowdsourcing can play the definitive role in a hunt for ideas, & tools like social-media make it easy to develop your own applications for this purpose, according to Simon Willison, software architect and web developer for The Guardian.
As the legalization of equity based crowdfunding in the U.S. is still off in the distance most people don't realize that you can already crowdfund capital for your business - even in America. You can't give away equity in exchange for a donation, but I don't think luring donors with equity is the best approach for the type of demographic crowdfunding targets. If you just need a little capital to get your idea off the ground, a donation-based crowdfunding project can be just the answer.
I'm noticing a growing trend: many people are rushing into crowdfunding to finance their projects without fully understanding the numerous challenges that await them. It's as if they're going out for their first skydive, but they don't bother to take a skydiving lesson or get a few practice jumps in. They just close their eyes and hope it all works out.
And then they realize they forgot the parachute.
Pinterest is a social network that hasn't realized its full potential, and that's because most people who use it haven't recognized the power it possesses. A virtual pinboard, Pinterest allows you discover interesting things on the Internet and pin them to particular boards you've created. For instance, I have a board called "Film Noir Favs & Classic Kingpins," which is tacked with posters of classic movies I've watched. But aside from pinning images you find on Google, more and more people are pinning up their own work as a showcase of their talent and ideas.
The next step will be to use Pinterest with your online fundraising endeavors. That said, here are four ways you can get started using your Pinterest account in conjunction with crowdfunding your next big project.