Tricks and best practices to achieve a desired goal with your crowdfunding campaign.
Crowdfunding is a solution that involves financing a cause by engaging the general public through specialized Internet platforms. To be successful, a crowdfunding campaign requires a great deal of communication and energy, especially if the collection goal is high.
Here are 19 tips for a successful crowdfunding campaign for nonprofits.
TIP 1: Presenting a project like no other
To succeed, you must first present a project as different from others.
To attract attention, even to provoke astonishment or admiration, we need a project like no other, a project that leaves the beaten track because it shifted, new, creative, innovative, artistic, innovative, or even human and visionary.
TIP 2: Presenting a credible project
Innovate, trigger wonder or admiration, certainly. But your project must remain credible. The goal is to raise funds to make the project concrete and viable.
To reassure donors about the credibility of the project, there’s only one solution: pedagogy. The first step is to explain the project with simple words, words that an 8 – year – old child could understand: what is and why, who is, where, and how? Remember that the best ideas are the simplest!
TIP 3: Illustrate your project with photos and videos
Photos and videos are of utmost importance in a crowdfunding operation. The potential donor likes to visualize the concept: to see the project promoters, to understand the issue, to put realities into words.
The photos and videos are all proof of the credibility of the project. They help bring the potential donor directly into the project. Focus on dynamic, rather than static, photos or videos: concrete scenarios are more meaningful than portraits or group photos.
TIP 4: Do not start the campaign too early
Starting a crowdfunding campaign at the very beginning of a project is not a good idea. Indeed, you may not have anything concrete to show and you will not be able to present any proof of your seriousness and ability to move from idea to reality.
It would be ideal to start building a support group before the launch of the campaign, for example by organizing an event, the donations will take off faster.
TIP 5: Choosing the Right Crowdfunding Platform
Choose the crowdfunding platform that best suits your project. For faith based organizations, small nonprofits and educational institutes, platforms like GiveCentral are well adapted.
The most well-known platforms will attract more donations, with more members and the fact that the donor will trust a platform he has already heard about.
Some platforms can also be used to collect donations from different countries in different languages, which can sometimes be interesting.
TIP 6: Do not hesitate to take ‘inspiration’ from the right projects
Survey similar projects on various crowdfunding platforms and note what you like, which catches your eye and piques your curiosity. Find the right hooks, the right arguments. Study how to describe a project. Donate money and study the project from the inside and see how the nonprofits organizations are communicating with their contributors.
TIP 7: Understand the motivations of different types of donors
Donors can be categorized into different categories, with motivations sometimes very remote:
Some donors favor the quality of presentation and project credibility ,
Others are concerned with the spirit or objective of the project and compare them with their own values (humanism, mutual aid, solidarity, education, self-fulfillment, entrepreneurship, innovation);
Others want to understand the approach of project leaders and focus on people, perhaps with the desire to be part of the group,
Others give because they know the project bearers from near or far,
Finally some simply give to get a tax receipt and lower their taxes.
Ask yourself what the typical profile of your donors is based on the nature of your project, and adapt your speech!
TIP 8: Taking into account the importance of social networks
Crowdfunding increases to 90% via the Internet, about 50% of which flows from Facebook. It is therefore essential to be present on the social networks to make take off his campaign of crowdfunding.
First of all, create a Facebook page, invite your friends and feed it like a blog. Interact on the most influential Facebook groups in your city or theme to introduce yourself, ask questions and finally launch and animate the campaign.
TIP 9: Using Press Relays and Bloggers
Here the goal is to find prescribers: journalists or bloggers who will talk about you, write a text or an article on your initiative and especially give their opinion. All this is excellent for your visibility and your credibility, because the more a message is repeated and relayed by people recognized for their status, the better it passes.
TIP 10: Defining a Realistic Gift Objective
The target amount of collection must be realistic. If you set a goal that is too high, your crowdfunding campaign may run low in the second or third week. Set a collection goal that mostly matches your investment in time to liven up the campaign. If you think you can mobilize a large number of relays and activate influencers, if you are surrounded and helped on a daily basis, if you have time to meet journalists, bloggers, institutions and patrons, then set a donation target high!
TIP 11: Defining the right duration and the right period
The duration of the campaign (from 30 to 90 days) is a sensitive issue.
To make a campaign too long is to take the risk of losing interest. To make a campaign too short is to risk missing a number of contributions.
The dates of the beginning and the end of the campaign are also important: attention to the school holidays, parties …
TIP 12: Offer an alternative to online payment
There might be a percentage of people who do not wish to pay on the internet or who are uncomfortable with the “technique” of online payment. Do not miss out on these gifts: give contributors the opportunity to donate by check, wire transfer, or cash. Be clear about the terms and conditions: check sending address, order, etc.
TIP 13: Successfully launch the campaign
At launch, you have to communicate strongly, at a favorable time, that is, a moment when people are at their computers and ready to “listen”. Good communication will first go through an e-mailing and Facebook.
Start by reaching out to your immediate surroundings with personalized emails. That means an e-mail per person, without turning around the bush. Above all, try to turn each of your friends into an active relay.
The goal is to go beyond the limits of its own network.
TIP 14: Communicate, communicate, and communicate
Making a great communication campaign at the launch of crowdfunding is fine. But continuing the communication campaign throughout the operation is better.
You will have to continually provide evidence of the credibility of your project and your motivation. This is how you will convince the hesitant.
Send messages, photos, continue feeding your Facebook page. Give news and joy, even if your campaign stagnates.
Thank the donors, even the small ones. Show them that they are part of the team and they will become your best commercial. Give others the desire to join them.
Set a new intermediate target, a new threshold to be reached.
Adopt a positive communication, show that you will get there!
TIP 15: Suggest suitable counterparties
Crowdfunding most often works as a gift versus gift, that is, with rewards or “counterparts” . The rewards are not going to be of interest to all donors, some will not even claim them. But they may appeal to some small donors, or they may encourage some contributors to donate more.
Take care of the quality of the donations, and adapt them to the spirit of the project: propose surprise gifts for example.
TIP 16: Do not lower your arms
A crowdfunding campaign is an endurance race: the mind counts as much as the legs. You always have to believe, always raise. As long as the deadline is not reached, success is possible. Do not hesitate to reach out to your network more than once.
TIP 17: Managing the last straight
The last three days must be the occasion of a great communication operation: re-launch and motivate for the one last time, all your contacts.
TIP 18: Do not hesitate to complete the donations yourself to achieve the goal
If the goal is not achieved, the trick is to supplement the amount yourself by making a donation. This will validate the success of the operation.
Tip 19: Plan to spend enough time
This is the last advice, but the basic advice, which summarizes everything: if you want to succeed in your crowdfunding campaign you will have to invest a lot of time. So choose a period when you are available to see the project through.
To learn more on having a successful crowdfunding campaign, you could refer to this infographic.