Did you know that these days you can announce your dream project and get others to help fund it in less than a month?
Move over angel investors, financiers and bank loans, this is the age of crowdfunding.
I deliberately didn’t include it in my last post when I wrote about 5 key trends to take advantage of in 2013. That’s because I think this is possibly the biggest and most exciting trend to tap into.
I honestly don’t think crowdfunding will hold it’s celebrity status for years to come, so that’s why I think you should be tapping into using it right now.
I wrote about how to create a kickass crowdfunding campaign and make your dreams come true, including breaking down successful campaigns that got funded, and what they did that worked.
Today I want to discuss five major benefits to using crowdfunding to launch your project or initiative right now:
No 1. Clarity
Creating a project or campaign helps you to define exactly what it is you want to achieve, from crafting your marketing message, to defining the reasons why it’s important.
Campaigns that win peoples’ hearts and minds really tell a story of why you should support them. See Amy Clover’s recent 30 x 30 Project to ensure she could tour across the US and Canada teaching 30 donation-based bootcamps in 30 different cities.
Amy had an amazing video put together and a truly touching story about how she almost didn’t celebrate her 30th birthday and why this was so important to her. She reached her goal of raising $18,000 through Indigogo.
No 2. Commitment
There’s nothing more powerful than announcing to the world that you care deeply about and want to see happen, more than anything. Once your campaign is public you will do everything in your power to make sure it succeeds – yep you will hustle and commit to seeing it through.
Nathan Agin did a great job of this with the Food Lovers TV series he wanted to produce. He sent out continual updates on Kickstarter to those who had backed him already, asking them to share with their friends so he could meet his goal. He listed ways to do this, and gave his big `why’ he’d love to see this succeed.
This is one of the biggest challenges I see people struggle with, committing 100% to a project they start. They get side-tracked, lose faith, lose momentum or lack clarity. But with crowdfunding campaigns you go big or go home.
No. 3 Accountability
As I mentioned above, putting yourself out there, in such a public way is the best way to make sure you achieve your goal. You’re making a statement to the world, and in doing so you are being backed by all the people who step up to support you in your cause.
You can’t buy that level of support and follow through and it’s massively motivating for you, as you don’t want to let them. I’ve created a Kickstarter to write my Suitcase Entrepreneur book and now I know I can’t possibly not write it.
People are leaving comments on what they want to read in it and why it should be written, and it spurs me on the days I don’t feel worthy of writing, to get back on track. I set a date of my birthday next month, in which to complete the first draft. So thanks to this campaign I’m being held to this audacious goal.
No 4. Pressure
I mean this in a good way. Most crowdfunding campaigns allow you to set your campaign for a duration of 15-60 days only. Most people go with 30 days, as it’s been proven to be the most effective in reaching your funding goal.
Why? As with anything time-bound, it forces you to get a wiggle on and work hard to ensure you hit your deadline. This includes getting out there to market your campaign online through social media channels, video, email and in person with everyone you meet. It makes you tap into your network and enlist support in spreading the word, and take every opportunity to do this in just a month.
If we had that kind of healthy pressure in our daily tasks or our ongoing projects that we are letting slide by the way side, we’d all be way more effective.
No. 5 Ownership
You have to seriously own your campaign from start to finish, as this is not something to be taken lightly. People are investing their hard-earned money in your dreams, and expecting you to come through on your promise and deliver on what you said.
In a world full of fast talkers and instant gratification, I like how handing over the financing of your dreams to the public, makes you think twice about what you promise to people. You can’t pull out of something once it’s been funded. You can’t also hide from the project if it fails.
If it’s the latter, then take heed. It maybe for a good reason, that the public has spoken and not supported your campaign. Perhaps you need to go back to the drawing board and make it even better and try again. That is, after all, the defining qualities of entrepreneurs who succeed.
Never give up. Never give in. If at first you don’t succeed, try again, but better.