Thursday, June 19, 2014

Crowdfunding 101 - Using Social Media

There is a lot of advice out there on how to crowdfund your project or idea, the best ways always involve social media. Social media through avenues such as Facebook and Twitter are great for trying to reach targeted audiences who are talking about crowdfunding campaigns. You can also target people who are known crowdfunding supporters and other fellow crowdfunders. You can do this with promoted posts and sponsored posts on Facebook.

With Facebook Ads manager you can actually specifically target custom audiences based off of what Fan pages on Facebook they have 'Liked'. This gives you more information about what audience to hit, and if they 'Like' a page on Facebook that is similar to your or even your products fan page, then you can target them with ads that will end up right on their newsfeed.

This is a pretty advanced tactic to use in generating some real traction for your campaign. If you want to target some custom audiences I would recommend the crowdfunding service that we used. We (as a lot of crowdfunders will know) were contacted by a lot of promotion based services through our Kickstarter page, the main buzz going right now are people trying to sell you low-level press release services. Beware that most of these services didn't even have a phone number to reach, which is very scammy and raises some concerns. The ones that did had a call center representative answer the phone, which is also a clear red flag.

The only targeted promotion service I was approached by and the only one I could find online was They launch custom Facebook ads for Kickstarter and Indiegogo campaigns in front of targeted audiences using custom data scraping software. Facebook ads combined with your own general social media promotional efforts works wonders for covering all your bases, getting promotion within and outside your social networks.

In terms of promoting your campaign and press releases you're better off just just doing that yourself. Although there are some crowdfunding services out there that manage your facebook account and send messages to all of your friends, but you're better off just doing that yourself so you can make it more personalized. The last thing you want to do is come off as spammy to your friends and family, they're going to be crucial for your early momentum on the campaign! Get exposure outside of your social networks with targeted ads, and then send out some personalized messages to within your social network to support your campaign.

Building a fan page for your product and brand on both Facebook and Twitter is also really great for building momentum before you launch. This builds audiences to reach out to once you finally launch your crowdfunding campaign, to further gain more momentum on your campaign. Along with promoting your crowdfunding campaign on social media and among friends and family, this is great for building custom audiences who are already interested enough to 'Like' and 'Follow' your page.

Plus constantly updating your fan pages will show that you are active on social media, and if anyone has any question about your product, idea or campaign you will be able to answer them promptly, which will increase contributions! This shows people that you're serious about your crowdfunding campaign and that you deserve the funding your project needs!

Then when you do launch you will need to constantly be updating your page, commenting and thanking people who contribute to your page. Along with constantly updating your gallery tab, and providing live updates about your campaign across social media. Getting the word out about a crowdfunding campaign on Kickstarter and Indiegogo is very important because of the crazy amount of campaigns on both websites. There are over 300 campaigns launched per day on both Kickstarter and Indiegogo! That makes it ever so important to build the momentum your campaign needs before you launch. Then while you're live to reach outside of your social networks of friends and family with some targeted Facebook ads to draw outside contributions to your crowdfunding campaign.

These are some of the tips that crowdfunders are using on their own campaign and that we used on our own Natural Time Crowdfunding campaign that was on Kickstarter that got us massive amounts of success!

We're also planning on launching a project sometime this Spring for our new lineup, see you then!