Have a big idea, but don’t want to go into a load of debt to make it happen? Consider running a crowdfunding campaign, like Max Martinez and Jason Vitug of Phroogal. Max and Jason raised almost $80k via Indiegogo in thirty days for their personal finance start-up.
Here are their keys to successfully crowdfund your own project:
1. Use Your Personal and Social Networks Early.
“It’s so important to start off strong. The friends and family I knew were going to donate a substantial amount. I had them go first.”
Creating momentum early can carry the rest of the campaign. Max got a large number of backers from one day of heavy Facebook messaging and reaching out to family. While the dollar amount wasn’t huge, it built momentum early on and created social proof for others to contribute.
2. Choose the right platform.
“Kickstarter is all or nothing. If you don’t hit your funding goal, you get nothing. With Indiegogo, whether the goal is hit or not, you’ll always collect some money.”
The crowdfunding platform you choose can ultimately make or break your campaign. Research your options and decide which platform gives you the best chance for success.
3. Create an effective reward structure.
Max and Jason are creating an innovative personal finance site, but they felt strongly about creating physical gifts for contributors. They designed custom Phroogal sunglasses and t-shirts for lower tier contributors, which have the added bonus of reinforcing their brand.
Instead of maxing out your credit cards or begging your parents for seed money, crowdfund a project to start your own movement and make your start-up dreams a reality.