Is Crowdfunding Right for You?

 Image by  kawaiikiri  via Flickr

Image by kawaiikiri via Flickr

At Aulenor, we help our startup clients figure out not just how to set themselves up for success, but how to raise the capital for it as well. Crowdfunding can be an important component to your overall business plan, offering funders a low-level buy-in and the chance to look into the creation process of your latest product. And though they might sound similar, not all crowdfunding platforms are the same - Kickstarter, IndieGoGo, GoFundMe and others all have unique strengths and cater to different business models. 

So - is crowdfunding the right option for you? And how do you set your strategy up for success? The questions below will walk you through our scope process step-by-step:

Are you selling a product, raising equity, or asking for donations?

Frequently people want to begin crowdfunding without knowing what they are crowdfunding for. If you do not know what it is, neither will your customer/investor/donor. Selling a product may be the most straightforward. If you are asking for donations, be specific about the cause. What benchmarks will you be able to hit as a result? Why should a donor believe you can meet them? Why does your organization matter? If you are raising equity, how will you communicate your long-term viability as a company? What ownership and control will investors have? Think through these details carefully.

What’s your communications plan? 

Communications needs to start well in advance of the crowdfunding campaign. You need to build email lists, earn media coverage, and have a social media presence. Communication needs to begin in earnest 3-6 months before the campaign. Better slow and successful than fast and failed. Luckily, Aulenor specializes in this communications effort, including media pitches and interviews, drafting blog posts and newsletters, and managing social media and crowdfunding websites.

Can you deliver?

Once your crowdfunding period is over, you need to deliver the goods. Buyers need to receive their products. Investors need to know benchmarks are being met. Donors need to know programs are happening and the impact being made. When you plan your crowdfunding campaign, you need to plan for success. If you are delivering a product, you need to know your supply chain and how you will scale. If you asked for donations, you need to have the people on board to execute your project. Investors are the start of a long-term relationship, and you need to be prepared to maintain that through good times and bad.

What's next?

If you've completed the process above and decided that crowdfunding is the right option for you - but you need some help putting all the pieces together and executing the plan - Aulenor is here for you. Let's set up a meeting to discuss the details and build out your next steps >