Crowdfund like a PRO!
10 questions to DIVE into the minds of 3 Crowdfunding GURUS!
By: Jan Christopher Arp
Hi there!
I’m Jan, the crowdfunding blogger.
I posed ten questions to three crowdfunding gurus,
who raised a combined ~$55...
1. Why crowdfund versus other financing sources (i.e. grants, debt, etc.)?
Find your crowd, get exposure and receive credi...
2. Why Kickstarter?
What Kleenex is to tissue paper, Kickstarter is to Crowdfunding. Although this may
change over time, i...
3. Describe the preparation process?
Preparation is crucial in order to maximize your chances of success. Consider:
Resear...
4. How does one set goals?
Initially there may not be a clear answer, and you are never really sure; however, here
are som...
5. How does one establish rewards?
Again, no single way exists for creating the rewards. The PROs suggest:
 No more than ...
6. How does one create awareness about the campaign?
First off, the campaign must be worth selling – don’t waste your time...
7. What are the biggest challenges?
The slowdown is identical
for 90% of the campaigns. It
occurs around day 14. Try
to cr...
8. What were the biggest factors contributing one’s success?
The concept should be somewhat unique, as crowdfunding is rea...
9. What might have been done differently?
Don’t announce the “stretch goals” too early, as it is difficult to change
these...
10. Is there any reason to not Crowdfund again?
TIME ENERGY
WILL Crowdfund!
Crowdfunding is exhausting, and some cases tak...
NOW LEAP LIKE A PRO INTO YOUR CAMPAIGN
1. Egor Culcea 2. Ivan Colic 3.Useiconic.com 4. Julieta Felix
5. Leonardo Dri 6. Andrew Nolte 7. Edward Boatman 8. Nick Gr...
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Crowdfund like a PRO! 10 questions to dive into the minds of 3 crowdfunding gurus!

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I asked ten questions to three crowdfund gurus. The following presentation promises to give you some insights into their success secrets!

Crowdfund like a PRO! 10 questions to dive into the minds of 3 crowdfunding gurus!

  1. 1. Crowdfund like a PRO! 10 questions to DIVE into the minds of 3 Crowdfunding GURUS! By: Jan Christopher Arp
  2. 2. Hi there! I’m Jan, the crowdfunding blogger. I posed ten questions to three crowdfunding gurus, who raised a combined ~$554K from close to 10,600 backers. The following presentation will give you some insights into their success secrets! Thomas Sychterz Wipebook co-Founder William Dubé Jotun Founder Jonathan Belisle Wuxia Founder Crowdfund like a PRO! 10 questions to DIVE into the minds of 3 crowdfunding GURUS!
  3. 3. 1. Why crowdfund versus other financing sources (i.e. grants, debt, etc.)? Find your crowd, get exposure and receive credibility: Find your crowd! The campaign identifies your true allies. Many who previously claimed they would support the campaign disappear. True allies become campaign champions, providing feedback, sharing and even donating. Get exposure aiding in attracting potential partners, i.e. publishers, media, suppliers, etc. This accelerates the development process, versus the alternative in which the campaign owner must find time to seek out potential partners. Interest level of the campaign can be judged, by the amount raised, which serves to validate the campaign. Validity turns into credibility, which you can literally take to the bank – to raise more money for the campaign. Ultimately, it’s sort of the first right of passage, with the least amount of barriers to entry – low risk, low cost, and huge potential versus other funding sources.
  4. 4. 2. Why Kickstarter? What Kleenex is to tissue paper, Kickstarter is to Crowdfunding. Although this may change over time, it’s currently the biggest one out there. Ultimately, Kickstarter raises more money per campaign, is more organized, with more mature advisers, and a lot more software to analyze campaign patterns. = Kleenex = Kickstarter
  5. 5. 3. Describe the preparation process? Preparation is crucial in order to maximize your chances of success. Consider: Research similar campaigns that failed and succeeded – how much money was raised, what did the video look like, etc. Establish communication channels with family, friends, journalists, bloggers, or any other interested party, as they are highly likely to promote your campaign to like-minded individuals once the campaign is live. Build the pitch – a balance between cool and professional. Simplify, make it emotionally catchy, fun to look at, but also ensure the campaign serves a purpose. Articulate the project’s end-game before explaining the project. Prepare a template of answers that address even the most basic of questions such as what is the point of Kickstarter, and how one uses it.
  6. 6. 4. How does one set goals? Initially there may not be a clear answer, and you are never really sure; however, here are some PRO suggestions: Determine your minimum budget. Choose a goal that if met, would provide sufficient cash to complete the project, especially if raising more money through debt is unwise. Research past campaign trends. For instance, game development ranges from $5,000 to $500,000, while indie games range from $20,000 to $65,000, depending on the perceived quality. Find the perfect mix, which is small enough for people to give you money, but large enough so that people continue contributing. The total amount raised on Kickstarter provides immediate credibility to the project. The greater the amount raised, the greater the credibility obtained. Summary: align the goal with market characteristics, psychological barriers, budgetary constraints, and credibility needs.
  7. 7. 5. How does one establish rewards? Again, no single way exists for creating the rewards. The PROs suggest:  No more than 8 tiers (e.g. $1, $10, $25, $50, $75, $100, $300, >$1’000).  Know the mental barriers (e.g. $25 - $50 average donation, subject to vary).  Each tier should clearly define the different value the donators receive.  Co-create rewards, especially if demanded by big investors (e.g. corporations). Most importantly, keep it simple! Rewards should be clear so that people can easily understand what they are getting for their money. Keep It Simple Stupid
  8. 8. 6. How does one create awareness about the campaign? First off, the campaign must be worth selling – don’t waste your time and the time of others selling snake oil! Next, consider the following: The first hour. Make sure all family, friends, and major sponsors are ready to donate in the first hour - $1 earned in the beginning is worth $100 later. Early success may result in being the featured Kickstarter campaign. The first 5 days. Reach out to the journalists and bloggers two days before the campaign commences, and share their posts. Make sure there is a lot of additional text material on the campaign page for them to use. Properly targeted communication. Buying ads on Facebook or hoping for people with massive followings to share the campaign, is ill-advised. One may not need 5,000 backers, but rather only 300 committed backers.
  9. 9. 7. What are the biggest challenges? The slowdown is identical for 90% of the campaigns. It occurs around day 14. Try to cross-promote with other campaigns, keep existing backers engaged, and remain positive even though some negative feedback may be received. Stay the course: send e- mails, conduct interviews and engage in social media. Traction shall recommence five days before the campaign’s end. People who previously said they would help, may now refuse to donate or share the campaign, with a “what’s in it for me?” attitude. This is not to be confused with those that are skeptical and become campaign champions as they understand how hard you are working (e.g. e- mails at 3 a.m.), and have a better understanding of the vision. People want to support a winner – i.e. a campaign that will reach its goal. Backers would rather avoid pledging money altogether, even though it doesn’t cost the backer any money for campaigns that don’t reach their goal. Convince potential backers that the campaign is a winner!
  10. 10. 8. What were the biggest factors contributing one’s success? The concept should be somewhat unique, as crowdfunding is really geared towards early adopters. Additionally, it must be a solid concept that people can buy into. A perfect storm – simple product, catchy idea, well presented (e.g. visuals and video), and strong team. It must be simple enough for anyone to understand and clear why people should give money. The vision must be well articulated and delivered with conviction and passion. Speaking with passion creates project champions that are truly convinced this will be the next big thing!
  11. 11. 9. What might have been done differently? Don’t announce the “stretch goals” too early, as it is difficult to change these later. Once a more clear understanding of market is obtained, develop “stretch goals” that ensure campaign momentum is maintained. More focus on organizing relationships with the stakeholders. This includes better follow-up questions and a more detailed organization system in the back-end. Be prepared for the sprint. Running a campaign is equivalent to a full-time job – hire an intern that can be full-time if necessary.
  12. 12. 10. Is there any reason to not Crowdfund again? TIME ENERGY WILL Crowdfund! Crowdfunding is exhausting, and some cases takes one a month to recover from the endeavour. Ensure one have the time, energy and will power to begin. There may be contextual constraints that could impede the ability to conduct a successful campaign, i.e. family. However, all would do it again, especially since they now have a rolodex of champions to contact. Once per year seems sufficient for them though!
  13. 13. NOW LEAP LIKE A PRO INTO YOUR CAMPAIGN
  14. 14. 1. Egor Culcea 2. Ivan Colic 3.Useiconic.com 4. Julieta Felix 5. Leonardo Dri 6. Andrew Nolte 7. Edward Boatman 8. Nick Green 9. Ramakrishna Venkatesan 10. Hunotika 11. Dan Hetteix 12. Luis Prado 13. Cody Lawson 14. Iconsmind.com 15. Lemon Liu 16. Dennis Timmermann 17. Laurent Patain 18. Alf 19. Matthew R. Miller 20. Till Teenk 21. Marie Ann Packer 22. OCHA Visual Info Unit 23. Ashia Sabbath 24. Matt Brooks 25. Amandine Vandesteene 26. Stephen Borengasser Special thanks to the Noun Project and their contributors (in order of appearance): ca.linkedin.com/in/janchristopherarp/Check me out on LinkedIn:

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