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Sally

Marks

TOTSUP Ltd

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Crowdfunding: Day 21

Today came the realisation it’s been at least a month since I had a conversation, sent an email or text that didn’t include the word crowdfunding.


I
had been warned this process was ‘intense’, ‘consuming’ and ‘a rollercoaster’
but in truth nothing could have prepared me for this exhilarating and
exhausting journey!

 

I’ve
already learned a huge amount and here are some thoughts and tips, which have
helped me;

 

Attend a workshop.

I
went to a crowdfunding workshop about 6 months prior to launch.  The information, knowledge, experience and
tools I came away with were invaluable and had I attempted to find all of this
material myself it might have taken months. There is a wealth of online
resources available to help build your crowd, identify a realistic target,
increase social media presence and publicise your campaign. Being directed to these
and knowing which were worthwhile, was really beneficial.

 

Be prepared to have
to educate people about crowdfunding and how it works.

I
have been very surprised at how many people I have spoken to who know little or
nothing about crowdfunding. Being armed with a simple, clear explanation can
save a lot of time. I wasn’t initially and quickly realised I needed a concise
explanation of how it works.

 

The power of email.

Of
all the channels I have used to reach out to people, email has been the most
successful. On two separate occasions, within minutes of sending emails I
received numerous pledges. Compile an exhaustive list of email addresses,
categorise it in to sections and send pre-launch emails, updates and follow
ups.

 

Planning...

...you can’t do
enough!


Don’t under
estimate the reach of your nearest and dearest.

I
have received huge support from my family, friends and in turn their networks.
It has been so encouraging to see how much they were prepared to get behind me
and become ambassadors for my project. This support is crucial, particularly in
the first 48 hours, so take the time to ‘phone family and friends and tell them
about the project in advance. – but don’t underestimate the time this will take!

 


Get the press
onboard… but not until there are pledges in place.
 

This was a great
piece of advice I was given and as a result I didn’t send my press releases out
until day 2 of my campaign. I then followed the emails up with (relentless!) phone
calls and an update on how the campaign was going. This resulted in some great
press coverage.

 

The campaign reach
goes far beyond the pledges.

Since
launching my campaign, I have had approaches from schools interested in ordering,
potential retail stockists, been interviewed by my local radio station and on
Blab and been featured in an article in a crowdfunding magazine due for release
later this week. The likes and shares on social media has been astounding and
the messages of support and encouragement incredible.

 

And finally… be
prepared for the lulls.

Those
quiet days when pledges are few and far between are a killer… expect them and have
plenty of ideas to refresh the campaign, at the ready.


Blog supplied by Sally Marks, Founder of TOTSUP Ltd. and member of the GAIN20 network (#GAIN20). Sally's crowdfunder campaign is live
until Tuesday 12 April at crowdfunder.co.uk/totsup. All pledges
and shares greatly appreciated.

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