With crowdfunding becoming an increasingly viable option to seeking traditional investors for fueling, marketing and bringing a homegrown technology to market, having a great idea or an invention is only half the job done if you are looking to make it big and realize the true and full potential of your initiative.
Article Contributed by Solomon Nabatiyan of Techmoola
Crowdfunding is a new way of doing business through community based participation. The process works through a broad network of interested people who contribute a pool of money to support efforts, ideas or products of other people or companies with no equity stake or payback necessary. If people believe in something or identify with it and they want to see it out there, they will contribute funds to be part of the process and get a small reward in return for their contribution. From developing a new app to life-saving medical technologies, crowdfunding is one of the best options for individuals looking to start broad and strong.
Indeed, many of the processes that go into setting up a successful crowdfunding campaign also serve as the legwork for development and promotional work that needs to get done once the funding does come in. So if crowdfunding is right for your tech project and your startup’s funding needs, development and promotional strategies, then take a look at some of these tips to make the most of your efforts and ensure maximum success.
Choosing the Right Website for your Specific Crowdfunding Needs
There is no shortage of crowd funding sites out there so when it comes to picking one, you need to be absolutely sure that the site you chose offers a good traffic stream of visitors and the right audience of supporters whose interest are specialized enough to appreciate and support your work. Different sites offer their services to varying niche entrepreneurs looking for project funding. For example, you will find different sites for creative endeavors and different ones for traditional, business-related or non-profit social projects. If you do not fall into a particular niche, you can also find more general crowdfunding sites but your campaign reach may not be as successful on the general platforms because there will be less of your target audience available to share your project with and get backers from.
Assessing Your Target Audience
There is no end to categorizations in this field. So if you are looking to begin a new project, make sure you have analyzed your target audience well and craft your message and communication strategy accordingly to appeal to them and naturally get them on board to support your project in return for rewards that would interest them. For example, if you are pitching a new communications device such as a WiFi phone device, you will have a specific target audience. The size of the target audience is also a determinant when deciding on a crowdfunding site that draws enthusiasts for support and backing of such a technology.
Be Passionate When Pitching Your Project
If you do not believe in your project, you can be rest assured that no one else will either. It is all about making a good first impression and sharing your vision for your invention and how it will impact users and address a specific need effectively, uniquely and efficiently. So when you are pitching your idea to an audience for the very first time, make sure that they see it with the same vision and enthusiasm as you.
Make Sure Your Expenditures Are Well Planned
Even if you have the best idea in the world, if you cannot convince your crowdfunding audience about the feasibility and economy of your plan, they will be hesitant to contribute. So make sure you give a detailed explanation as to how much funding you need for your proposed project, how you are planning to spend the money and how much you expect to advance. Also share what your next steps will be once your proposed project is funded and executed as planned.
Crowdfunding is a new phenomenon that has only been enabled in the past couple of years due to a rise in social media tools, people’s widespread adoption of them and the global and local interconnectivity that has emerged through use of social media platforms and the mobile technologies that give people constant and complete access to them. As a result, not a lot of people may have heard of crowdfunding when they come across your project and funding approach. So plan on using social media, emails and other tools of communication to spread awareness of not only the crowdfunding concept but how you are planning to use crowdfunding to finance your invention and make a successful startup through the power of crowds.
Tell us about an invention that you'd like to crowdfund in the comments below.