Having raised funds for a startup through crowdfunding, I see the benefit of running the crowdfund in 2-3 rounds. Like an equity raise, a crowdfund will see more success if revisited at least a second time. Sometimes even a third.
Here’s a bit of what I’ve experienced with crowdfunding at JazzJune and some ideas for how you might leverage your own.
Reasons and Lessons Learned
Even friends and family will surprise you with their reactions – good and bad! You will hear back from a former colleague, “What’s crowdfunding?” or “Is this link legit?” And others who you thought of as long shots immediately donated more than you could ever have hoped for.
The lesson here is about the crowd. F&F are various demographics and approach #1 might not ring true for even the closest of family or bestest of friends. You have to return and ask again. You have to make it ring true. And you have to be persistent and patient in explaining what you’re doing and how their help can make a difference.
Crowdfund Rounds Should Run Quickly – Digital crowdfunding requires promotion and viral attraction strategies. That’s email, newsletter, blog, social media, and whatever else you got. But, it’s hard to sustain marketing and social for too long about anything let alone when you’re asking for donations.
And it’s rude to drag on and on about a thing. To keep your promo game on point, close the first round in 30 days max. Try 20 days: plan it, plan promotions and social, and run hard for 20 days.
Things Happen Around Crowdfunds – Minds change, revenue changes, burn rates shift drastically, focus pivots, and, my favorite, momentum, ebbs and flows.
A second round is often necessary to properly show who you are now and what you are about now. That first round also likely happened when you were just starting out, your company’s identity wasn’t fully established and your vision wasn’t as clear as it s today.
You’ll grow from a crowdfund. A second round of crowdfunding shows growth. It also shows momentum and perseverance.
If, at first, your crowdfund falls flat, give it another go. And then another. Stick with it. You got this.