Before You Start Your Campaign
We suggest you start working on your fan-funding campaign at least two to four weeks before your launch date, having already done the lion’s share of the heavy lifting in terms of getting the word out, sharing your news and collecting email addresses. The most common mistake that fan-funding campaigners make is to not adequately engage their network of friends, family and fans. This means having people set and ready to start funding the launch of the campaign on day one. This is important because campaigns that accelerate more rapidly early on and attain a significant percentage of their funding goal in a short span of time often attract more attention as a whole over the life of the campaign.
Make sure you develop truly compelling incentives for your contributors that tie in to your story and aren’t just swag. As a rule of thumb, simply ask yourself, would I go through the trouble to buy this incentive myself? Think about what you could offer that is truly, uniquely you. Another way to come up with great incentives is to look at some of the big successful multi-hundred thousand or multi-million dollar campaigns. Most leave their campaigns up online and you can browse through all their incentives
Produce a Great Video
It is important to remember the context of fan-funding online. You’re vying for a persons attention while they’re online, and they have tons of other distractions and things pulling their attention away from you. It’s for this reason that your initial pitch and messaging absolutely must grab your funders attention right away and pull them in. The most effective way to do this is via telling a great story – either about yourself or about your project.
Once you have their attention, the way to keep their attention and truly engage them is to engage “the 2 brains” as I call it. This means engaging both the rational brain (the “what” of what you’re doing) and the emotional brain (the “why” of what you’re doing).
Keep it personal and be yourself. Tell your story and share your enthusiasm for your project, and people will naturally want to add their support.
Promote Your Campaign
Create an Audience
Even before you launch your campaign, you can drum up interest in your project. With a solid fan-base in place, your campaign will get off to a good start. If you don’t already have a community to tap into, try and get the attention of a handful of influential figures who might be interested in your project.
Social Media Fan-funding
You don’t need a blanket presence on social media, though the wider your reach the better. Pick the platforms (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter) that best suit your marketing and content strategies and where your fans and potential supporters are most likely to be found. Don’t forget to customize your promotion to suit each platform, too. But don’t rely on your social media pages to do it all. Email lists can be very powerful. And don’t forget good old ‘word of mouth’.
Appeal To Your Audience First
Consider the fans and supporters that you already have, making your project goals and incentives something that these people are going to be ready to identify with.
Keep your fans and potential supporters in the loop. Post regular updates on your fan-funding page, and keep the process going after the campaign has ended. And make sure that after the campaign ends everyone gets the incentive(s) they were promised.
Also, in a addition, plan for several major marketing ‘pushes’ throughout your campaign.
Focus On What’s In It For Them
It may sound counter intuitive, but while your goal in fan-funding is to raise funding for yourself, the more you can focus on what is in it for your fans the more likely you are to create a set of incentives that helps you raise the dollars you’re looking for.
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