How to Create a Successful Equity Crowdfunding Campaign
Every few months another successful equity crowdfunding campaign hits the headlines. Such success stories continue to draw more and more SME’s and investors to equity crowdfunding platforms with high hopes of being next. But, for every successful campaign, there’s more that fall short, and a crowdfunding campaign can make or break your capital raise.
There’s no magic formula to a successful crowdfunding campaign, but there are key elements. Achieving the following elements can ensure your campaign has the best chances of success.
1: A Crowd
The best way to do this is authentically. Start early and make it personal – never underestimate how effective face-to-face interaction can be.. Build a rapport with your crowd, give quick presentations about your offer and ask them for input and advice.
Fostering an authentic crowd takes effort. If possible, take the time to create personal messages thanking new members, or those that are engaging with and promoting your campaign and newsfeed. This effort goes much further than spamming your network with invitations to like pages and posts.
In general, your entire team should always carry a card with relevant contact details and information about the campaign on it. Adding social media usernames, a QR code to your landing page, campaign hashtags and a FAQ to it is always beneficial.
A pre-launch campaign party will help you get to know the potential backers in a relaxed setting. At the event, have a strategy in place for working the room. Having pledge cards can help you gain a rough estimation of actual investors once the campaign goes live. Pledge cards are promises guests make to invest in your offer.
A post-campaign party after a successful campaign is just as important. To keep your crowd going, it is important to thank them after for a job well done. You can now leverage your crowd to obtain market feedback, drive sales, recruit staff and advertise new and existing products or services.
A successful equity crowdfunding campaign may result in you acquiring many shareholders. If this does occur, it is important to continue to keep them in the loop about your company and its progress, they can be key to ongoing promotion of your product or service.
2: A Social Media Presence
To get started, find forums and pages that relate to your offer. Engage and contribute on them to build a reputation amongst their members and get to know their most active members, so you can make contact when the time comes. These forums and pages will also help you identify gaps in the industry and target market needs which aren’t being met. Following people in your target market and reposting their relevant content can help you gain followers.
Once the campaign goes live, it is important to keep your social media up-to-date and respond to comments as soon as possible. Quality responses, especially for the FAQ section can go a long way. Comments and posts should be creative, opinionated, and insightful to increase engagement and your reach in a meaningful way. This also positions yourself and brand as an industry leader. Engaging in posts by other companies and people in the industry can also help achieve this.
Having a realistic timeline or goals in place that details what your business wants to achieve before, during and after your campaign is also beneficial. This shows your crowd and investors that you intend to stick around. Investors become surer of the direction taken by the business and people stay motivated and engaged even if the capital raise goal is exceeded. Keeping followers and investors updated on the business’ progress will help maintain social media presence.
Scheduling posts will keep your social media platforms active. Having a bank of relevant and interesting posts, images, videos and articles to schedule throughout the week can help build your community and keep them engaged.
3: Content Ready for When Your Offer Goes Live
A vital component of your campaign is the introductory video. This should be short, compelling and of professional quality. Having other videos in the bank is also always handy, such as a thank you video from the team for investors.
To create and promote content, connect with social influencers related to your industry and bloggers or journalists. Read their work in advance and try engaging with them before your campaign goes live. Develop a story or angle worth reporting on and give them resources such as logos, pictures, prototypes and links to ensure that their networks are directed to your platforms and landing page. One way to find influencers is by looking at past campaigns similar to yours and following the hashtags and mentions used. This will also help you learn what works great on social media and what doesn’t.
4: A Compelling Landing Page
Before publishing your landing page, test out the title, pictures and content with family and friends first. The best-selling points should be in the first two paragraphs and grab the readers’ attention. Aesthetic-wise, the landing page should look professional and have links to social media. A compelling landing page is important since every marketing effort should lead back here. A useful functionality to have on the page is the ability to share it or refer friends to it. Tracking traffic coming onto your landing page will allow you to see what platform is working best and you can boost it accordingly.
If you’d like to know more about equity crowdfunding see What is Equity Crowdfunding?
If you’re interested in raising capital via equity crowdfunding, please get in touch!