Be it for product development or a social cause, crowdfunding is an effective way to raise the money needed to complete any project. Social media is the most important tool for getting people to donate. Read on to understand how crowdfunding works, and how you can boost its success with social media.
How crowdfunding works with social media
Social media benefits crowdfunding in many ways:
- Finding donors faster: Social media lets you quickly identify, and engage with, audiences that are likely to donate.
- Disseminating information: Social media sites let you spread information virally, and respond to questions and inquiries in real-time.
- Doing after-campaign engagements: Social media lets you keep in touch with your donors well after the campaign has ended.
All of these benefits illustrate why social media is an important part of many crowdfunding campaigns.
We've posted an FAQ for the Kickstarter! Y ou can check it out here: http://t.co/JJpYDSFF. Let us know if we missed your question.
— Oculus (@oculus) August 3, 2012
How crowdfunding works on Twitter
With its real-time nature, Twitter will be your main means of sending updates on your crowdfunding effort, as well as the project itself. It can also be used to direct your audience to content that helps them understand the campaign.
— West AL Food Bank (@WestAL_FoodBank) August 3, 2017
A big challenge here is getting your crowdfunding tweets seen by your audience. Come up with a recognizable hashtag and use it to call attention to your posts. Use the hashtag before the campaign’s launch to increase recall. Devumi’s Auto Engagements Serivce can also be used to build the prominence of these hashtags and your tweets over time.
How crowdfunding works on YouTube
Multimedia content is an effective way to convince potential donors to support you. YouTube is going to be your main channel for releasing videos about your campaign. The videos you upload can be readily shared to your other social media accounts, increasing their reach.
Create a dedicated YouTube channel to better coordinate your crowdfunding campaign’s media content. Optimize it and your videos to increase the likelihood that they will appear in search results. Use the comment section of your videos to speak with your viewers and direct them to your donation pages.
How crowdfunding works on LinkedIn
LinkedIn might be more professionally oriented than other social media sites, but it can still be used to support your crowdfunding campaign. Do this by creating a company page to attract donors and find volunteers.
To capture both target audiences, your LinkedIn page should actively share information about the project.
Be ready to respond in the comments section. Use Devumi’s LinkedIn Followers Service to make your page more prominent, allowing you to attract more donors.
How crowdfunding works on Facebook
Facebook is going to be the main hub from where you can send out content to other platforms. Create a company/organization page where you can share the various content, as well as more information about the crowdfunding subject.
Their handy, and well-placed, Donate button will also help:
You can also use the page to further engage your audience, eventually leading them to your donation page.
Creating your crowdfunding campaign’s narrative
Just like any other marketing effort, a crowdfunding campaign starts with an engaging story about the project. Indiegogo lists the elements that make up a compelling campaign narrative.
- An intriguing introduction: Talk about what inspired the project as well as your motivations to do it. Show your audience its impact should the project succeed.
- Inspiring characters: Backers are more likely to be interested in the crowdfunding project if they know more about the people behind it. Introduce yourself and your team.
- An engaging plot: Take your audience through the stages of the project and give them information on how it will develop.
- A satisfying conclusion: Let your backers feel like they are part of the campaign by giving them frequent updates on its progress, as well as its achievements.
Look out for new ways to make your storytelling more compelling. Multimedia content is particularly effective in making your campaign’s story more engaging.
Our crowdfunding page is now live! Support us in our mission to create a platform for young people in UK politics. https://t.co/ei2zAI02jc
— StandUpMag (@StandUpMag_) April 4, 2017
Delivering your campaign message
Once you have your campaign narrative laid out, it’s time to present it to your target audience. Don’t just post the same piece of content all over your social media accounts. Instead, plan out how you will distribute your content more strategically.
This is where the roles assigned to your chosen social media sites come into play. Come up with a different message that best suits the audience for each platform. Take advantage of the strengths of the particular platform to better convey that message. Ensure that everything ties back to the core message of your campaign.
A strong offline marketing effort is also important to how crowdfunding works. Use print and broadcast media to spread the word to the wider public about your fundraiser. Attending or organizing events relevant to your campaign also works to draw the crowd.
Lead your offline audiences back to your social media campaign pages for more information.
Reaching out to supporters
One thing to keep in mind about crowdfunding is that it’s not just potential donors that you want to attract. People who will show their support in other ways are also going to be an asset. Influencers within your industry or field are of particular importance, as they can help attract more donors.
— Rihanna (@rihanna) November 26, 2013
To reach out to these people, first follow them on social media. Comment on their content and engage them in a variety of ways. Once both you and the influencers are comfortable, gradually bring the topic of your crowdfunding to the forefront.
Putting your campaign into perspective
For most people, their willingness to donate often hinges on how the project is relevant to them:
- Learn more about your audience’s spending habits and use these as a point of argument for your campaign.
- You can emphasize the savings that can be earned from the project once it gets completed.
- You can also bring attention to the other benefits that it will bring to both donors and non-donors.
- Try highlighting what would happen if your donation drive does not succeed.
The idea is to create a sense of urgency that will convince hesitant donors to chip in.
— Save the Children US (@SavetheChildren) June 14, 2017
Your call to action should still be relevant to the interest of the audience to effectively tug their emotions.
Making the donation process easier
Streamlining your crowdfunding campaign’s donation process also helps get your audience to finally send in the dollars. Do this by letting them donate right on social media. Most of the popular platforms already provide you with Donate button functions for this purpose.
Third party crowdfunding sites like Indiegogo and Kickstarter also let you connect your social media accounts to them to make donations easier.
Attract more donors by making it easier for people to share donation calls. This is also easy with social media, as you only need to include the donation link in the post you share.
— SickKids_TheHospital (@SickKidsNews) November 18, 2016
Show your appreciation to those who have donated by sending out thank you messages. Don’t just limit these to public posts on social media. Make it more personal by sending email messages to your donors. Use this as an opportunity to further market the project and get them to support it beyond the crowdfunding campaign. Think of it as a customer retention strategy.
Use social media to attract donors to your crowdfunding campaign
Just like how it is for marketing products, social media is an effective tool to attract donations for crowdfunding:
- Choose the right platforms: Maximize the effectiveness of your calls for funding by identifying and being on the platforms where the most likely donors are.
- Attracting the right audience: Provide your desired donors with not just information about the project being funded but also a solid reason why they should chip in.
- Making it easy to donate: Use the various crowdfunding tools provided by social media sites to get people to easily send in their donations.
Follow these steps and you will soon be able to raise the amount needed to complete your project. Now that you understand how crowdfunding works with social media, it’s time for you to start your campaign.