Crowdfunding has been a serious buzzword of late. The worlds of nonprofit organizations and startups companies alike are enamored by the thought of capturing the imaginations of thousands of supporters who are eager to launch their ideas.
Crowdfunding can be defined as requesting small donations or early entry into new projects via social media, email, or the internet in general. The goal is to fund a project to get it off of the ground and running sooner, rather than later.
But here lies the problem, as more organizations are competing for crowdfunding dollars, more projects are left unfunded, forgotten, and ultimately fail. Many fail for the same reasons.
Here are the 5 most common reasons crowdfunding campaigns fail to help your nonprofit find success in the crowd.
Lack of planning
Poor planning is the obvious first reason why many crowdfunding campaigns fail. And it’s why a campaign of any variety fails, for that matter.
Crowdfunding especially requires a higher level of care and attention to detail than most other fundraising campaigns. You need to identify target audiences, determine how to cater to them, choose an emotion you’re working to draw out of them, a goal, a budget, a timeline, milestones, how you’re promoting the campaign and so much more.
Start with this simple three point check list:
- Create a list of who your target audience is.
- Create a list of campaign goals and objectives.
- Create a loose timeline of deliverables, and hold team members accountable for each of those deliverables.
Lack of promotion
Your nonprofit’s crowdfunding campaign is only as successful as the number of people you get to see your message. If you’re not focused on promoting your efforts through every available medium, your entire campaign could be all for naught.
At the very least, your content promotions should include social media, email marketing, traditional PR. Utilize every available resource including friends, and those with huge influences who've worked with your nonprofit in the past.
Lack of engagement with personal network
If your friends, family, coworkers, constituents, and volunteers are not engaged and enthusiastic by your crowdfunding campaign, chances are pretty good that external supporters will be equally as indifferent.
By ensuring your personal network is beguiled by the project, you’re effectively testing the effectiveness of your strategy, and in most cases, ensuring your first round of donors are ready to go.
Lack of news media relationships
Newspaper reporters have been around since the 17th century for a reason, they’re the best at getting information into the hands of those who yearn for it. Not having a go to member of the press can make it difficult to raise awareness for your campaign.
Contact your friends who are bloggers, social media aficionados, and any reporter friends you might have in your back pocket. If you do not know anyone like this, it’s time to get networking!
Lack of a video
A video is the single most important thing to any crowdfunding campaign. It is engaging, easy to communicate, and makes your organization look polished and professional.
According to recent research by CauseVox, having a video to explain your crowdfunding campaign is the single best way to ensure success.