We’ve said it a dozen times, and you probably know this by now too, that running a successful crowdfunding campaign is no walk in the park. If anything at all, it takes tremendous effort and can get rather rigorous. It’s one of those things that’ll keep you on your toes till the moment you reach 100% funded. Having said that, while you’re still going to be on your toes (yeah, that never changes) it doesn’t have to be a thunderstorm of sorts. A nifty phase by phase division is all it takes to smoothen your way to success!
Phase 1:Teaming Up A ready and capable team is the most important thing you need, if you intend to make it out of this alive and successful. You don’t need professionals. Turn to your friends, dip into your networks, or call for interns! You just need people who are skilled in the various aspects of your campaign that you're not that good at.
Phase 2: Brainstorming This happens way before your campaign can even go live. The brainstorming phase involves the following tasks:
- Research: Here, you will research not only about crowdfunding, but about successful campaigns. Plus, check if there have been similar projects and how have they fared. While you’re at it, also check for similar projects that have failed. Take notes. Talk to successful campaigners. Talk to your campaign coach to understand what the makings of a great campaign are. Understand whatever you can when it comes to decoding your target audience, breaking the social media clutter, and so on. Once you have fair amount of clarity, proceed to the next step.
- Goal-setting: This is important, because it sets the ball rolling for pretty much everything else you do. A good way to start is by defining what exactly you’re trying to fund. And, why? Be as specific as you can. Clarity on your goal, will lead to clarity on target amount, which is a major chunk of the job done. This will bring you the following step.
- Campaign communication: Once the goal is decided, the next course of action is how you are going to communicate it. Campaign communication involves- the channels you will use apart from your crowdfunding campaign page (for e.g. Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Newsletter, email marketing, landing page, etc.). Plus, you will also figure the approach or tone of the campaign- fun, serious, aggressive, passive; you get the drift. You should also use this step to figure out your communication and marketing strategy, instead of leaving it for later.
- Setting up collaterals: As soon as your strategy is in place, you will know just how much of what you will need, and the amount of work that is going to go into skyrocketing your crowdfunding campaign. Sit down and make a list of every single thing you are going to need during the campaign. Right from the emails to images and video snippets- everything needs to be listed. Once the list is made, start pushing all your deliverables into creation.
- Scheduling: Everything is much smoother when there are timelines in place. Assign a date to everything- when the pitch video will be ready, when the first wave of emails will go out, the social media updates, basically everything.
Phase 3: Delegating
Once you have your team in place, your goals sorted, everything mapped out on a calendar, it’s time to delegate. Call for a team huddle. Make sure everyone knows exactly what they’re doing and that everyone is on the same page!
Phase 4: Executing
Here’s the fun part! Or, the actual grind, depending on how you look at it. All that effort, everything you’ve done in the past- the effectiveness of it all- now hinges on how well you function in this phase. Stick to the plan and you’re all sorted. However, stay open to the possibilities of improvisations and adaptations.
Phase 5: Amplifying
Now make sure everyone’s hearing you loud and clear. Keep the momentum running, get everyone talking. Make sure you haven’t left any stone unturned. Take it to the next level! If you do things right, you’ll realize that eventually the internet itself will do the deed of promotion for you.
Phase 6 (bonus, and therefore, optional): Prepare for celebrations! You've earned that glass of champagne! Not to be a buzzkill or anything, but take time to regroup and put everything you've done in the campaign under perspective- your learnings, challenges overcome, lessons for the future and so on. Good luck!