Have you ever wanted to publish a book but thought it would be impossible? Guess what? It’s not.
If I can do it, you can do it. Read my latest article at Pubslush to find out how.
10 Tips for Crowdfunding Success:
1) Start with a bang
The first seven days of your campaign matter more than you know. Further, I’d say the first 48 hours set the course for the momentum of your entire campaign. Gather your closest friends to donate first before you publicize your campaign link. People love to jump on board a train that’s already rollin’. By the end of the second day of my campaign I had raised over $2,000. Which was exactly the goal I set: $1,000 for day 1 and $1,000 for day 2. (Again, people thought this was a crazy goal– no matter!) I believe this set the course for my train to keep rollin’ well past my goal of $12,000. The momentum of your campaign is decided by you and you alone, and it is directly proportional to the energy, passion and work that you pour into it. Come out of the gate sprinting, and then set your momentum to be a nice, steady drive straight past the finish line.
2) Know your audience inside and out.
What helped me is that I am my audience. I’m a bereaved mother, so I know inside and out what speaks to the heart of most bereaved mothers, and I made sure to tailor my campaign and my book specifically for bereaved moms. I thought about what I would like and that’s exactly what I offered. If you’re not already part of your direct audience, find someone who is and pick their brain about which incentives would motivate them to donate towards your book.
3) Offer enticing incentives
This goes along with knowing your audience, but it is a crucial enough part of crowdfunding to be its own category. Offering incentives that matter to people, matters. Get people on board in supporting your book by crafting creative incentives that people want. Think outside the box. Make it personal. Make it worthwhile. And make it fun! Offer them something they can’t refuse.
4) Make a kick-ass video
The crowdfunding video cannot be underestimated. I believe my video was probably one of the main reasons people decided to jump on board to support my campaign. Whether you hire someone professionally to make one or not, what matters is that it is passionate and draws people in. Let people know what your book is about, why you wrote it and what your vision is for the book once it’s published. Let them know why they should get behind your project. Keep it short, sweet and to the point. Mine was around 1 min 30 seconds. People have short attention spans. Embrace that. Your video needs to grab a person’s attention in the first 30 seconds or less or people will move on. You don’t want them to move on. You want people so enthralled with your video that they lounge on your crowdfunding couch– and linger just long enough afterwards to click “donate”.
5) Be relentless in a non-annoying way
Do not be afraid to ask for what you need, and to let people specifically know how they can help you reach your crowdfunding goal. This means asking again and again and again. People need reminding. The non-annoying kind. Spread some link love every day, and ask your friends to do the same. Not in a badgering way, but in a hey-have-you-heard-about-the-awesomeness-I’m-spearheading? kind of way. Do more than just post the link, directly ask people to back your project and let them know how they can specifically help you today. Remember, if you never ask, you’ll most likely never get what you want– in crowdfunding or in life.
6) Don’t underestimate the power of in-person crowdfunding
Remember to utilize the day-to-day social connections you already have, in addition to making new ones. The old social networking style– in person! Be fearless. Every day I handed out business cards with my Pubslush campaign link to at least five new people. At the gym, at the grocery store and anywhere in-between. I’d also leave five or ten in random places for people to find. Sneaky, I know– but guess what? It works.
7) Let your passion be contagious
Your passion should ooze from every pore of you. When people walk up to you they should be able to smell it from a mile away. If you’re not passionate about your work, who will be? Passion is contagious and it starts with you. Start spreading it now and keep it spreading like an overzealous virus. Passion is what other people connect with and get behind. And it all starts with you. Make sure your passion is contagious!
8) Utilize your social media networks and build a platform before you launch your campaign (if possible), and if not, build one as your campaign gains momentum
When I first launched my campaign my platform wasn’t huge by any means, but it was enough. And I made it more than enough. Use what you have, and grow it from there. I had enough people following my work to get a core group of them as excited as I was about my book and my passion project. Once I had a small group on board, I asked them to spread my campaign link to five of their friends, and so on. That’s how you can build a platform even in the midst of crowdfunding: by snowballing. Focus on your die-hard fans, and enlist their help in getting others on board. My platform grew by the thousands during the midst of my campaign. Start wherever you are and snowball it– before, during and after your campaign.
9) No matter what– never, ever give up
When the going gets tough, this one is hard to remember– but don’t ever give up. Did I bang my head against the wall during my campaign? Oh yes. Sometimes ad nauseum. There were days and weeks in the middle where I became incredibly discouraged that I might not reach my goal. The middle-time lag can be one of the hardest parts of crowdfunding. My advice? Keep on keeping on! Set lots of daily mini-goals to keep yourself on track for success, and offer yourself fabulous rewards that keep you motivated. Also, never underestimate the healing power of eating, sleeping and exercising. When you feel discouraged, allow yourself to feel it fully and then do what you need to do– cry, go for a run, take some deep breaths, or get a change of scenery. Then keep plugging away. No matter what, just keep charging forward and don’t stop getting the word out about your book. Even on my days of discouragement I’d still contact at least ten new people online a day. Every day of your campaign counts. Make today count with tangible actions, no matter how discouraged you feel.
10) Aim high: the sky is the limit!
Set your sights beyond your ultimate goal. This also means setting your sights beyond your daily, weekly, and monthly campaign goals. Know without a doubt that you can do absolutely anything you set your mind on. Yes– anything. You have to believe this all the way from your head down to your toes. There is no one else who will market your campaign (and your book) for you– or as well as you. You’ve got to be the one to take the bull by the horns and give it everything you’ve got and then some. You can rest after. But for now, pour all your sweat, blood, tears, heart and soul into this like nothing you’ve ever done before. Once you do I promise it will be one of the most shining moments of your life, and your success will pave you a gorgeous path to unimaginable places.
I’ll meet you there, celebratory wine in hand.
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Read the rest of the article here.