How to Avoid Common Crowdfunding Pitfalls

Posted: Mon, 05 August 2013 by Cara

By Cara Pleym

Crowdfunding is an exciting way to raise funds, but it’s also a little different and there are some common mistakes that are often made. Not to fear, we’ve written this blog so that you can avoid these pitfalls before you’ve even started! Follow our tips below, and you can be confident that you’re off to a good start in your crowdfunding campaign.

Here are some of the most common mistakes;

Not preparing well enough

Now, we’ve given a lot of advice in our previous blogs about pre-launch preparation, but we want to highlight a specific point – get backers before you start! Speak to your friends and family, reach out to key influencers and your local community and start drumming up interest before you start. Too often, project owners try and do this at the same time as launching their project, which is really hard work! Maximise your chances of success by getting people to agree to make promises in the first few days, so that you can hit that magic 20% and go on to smash your target.

Not committing enough time

Crowdfunding is hard work. We’re not going to sugarcoat it – you’ll need to devote at least an hour every day to promote your project and keep up interest. Think of your campaign as a plant that needs regular water (promotion) to stay alive. Without this, your great idea could wither and you could be setting yourself up to fail. Water your plant, and let your idea Bloom! We’d hate to see you close unsuccessfully just because you were too busy.

Ignoring other channels of communication

Social media is crucial to any campaign but it’s not the only way to engage backers! Use the comments section of your campaign to provide updates, contact your local newspaper and radio, go to networking events, run a competition or fundraising night. Offline promotion is just as important as online, so don’t neglect either. In fact, the more channels you use, the bigger your audience and potential crowd i.e. more backers!

Not asking for help

Don’t just ask for support, ask for promises! We know it’s hard to ask for money, but surely people can spare a fiver to support your project? Always remember that it’s not a donation, because backers are receiving cool rewards for their money. Don’t be afraid to reach out to other project owners for advice, ask us for some promotion ideas, and ask backers for feedback! We’ve all had a helping hand, so please do make the most of the support that’s available.

Not keeping backers updated

Throughout your campaign (and after!) we encourage project owners to keep backers updated through social media, blogs, newsletters, video diaries etc, in order to maintain their interest and ask for their help to promote your project. This will not only keep backers engaged, but it will make them feel special and valued, which makes them more likely to talk about you and your project to others. Building strong relationships with your backers is key to ensuring a lasting community who can be valuable in the future as customers, users, partners, or even backers for future crowdfunding campaigns!

So that’s some of the most common mistakes, but they are all easily avoided. However, avoiding these pitfalls will require effort, planning and commitment so be prepared. The more you put into your campaign, the more you’ll get out. Just ask any of our successful crowdfunders!

Got any questions about this blog or just in general? #askbloom on Twitter or email eva@bloomvc.com

(image courtesy of www.empowernetwork.com )