Let’s assume that you’ve already shot the pitch video, the campaign’s content - over which you’ve poured countless hours (a.k.a. weeks) - is already assembled, and rewards are in their right place. Everything is all set, but you still feel that backers are reluctant to support you. They need more testimonials upon which they can further build trust.
So how can you increase your creator credibility, especially among people who don’t even know you? Here are 3 useful pieces of advice.
1)No blank profiles. Faceless profiles will not get support from the crowd, as this is a clear sign that creators are not serious in their endeavors.
I mean, let’s be serious, if I don’t see a human face up there, then why should I invest in your campaign in the first place? This shows me that the creator didn’t put in the right amount of work and that they’re really not dedicated to their mission, maybe even ashamed.
As for the profile description, there’s no need to go over the board and post your entire biography. Tell people what have you achieved so far, but most importantly what are you capable of (project-wise). This implies translating your mission/campaign’s ultimate goal (i.e. to create a community, set an industry standard, etc.) into a story, one that truly sticks!
More on this in the upcoming posts.
2)Supporting other projects. Kolenda argues that crowdfunding revolves around the indirect reciprocity principle, which implies that if one provides value to another person, other people who have noticed this behavior will feel obliged to return the favor back to the initiator. Accordingly, potential donors are more likely to back creators that have supported campaigns in the past.
In fact, Kickstarter does so by displaying this information in the creator’s public profile. Check out Artana LLC, the creators of the ongoing Tesla vs. Edison: Powering Up! campaign.
30 backed projects!! Do you think they exceeded their target 15 times in only 9 days just by accident? This was indirect reciprocity all the way. Backers felt safe and appreciative towards an organization that was already helping other people in the Kickstarter community to fund their dreams. They felt more like pals, and less like customers. Why not support a friend, after all?
Even if nobody would have invested and the only backers would be the creators of the 30 backed projects, Artana would have still made it at the low funding goal of $5.000.
3)Social Media inclusion. Platforms such as Kickstarter allow for Social Media integration in the form of Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and so on.
Let’s take Facebook for example, since it’s core to every campaign’s marketing strategy. Even though some creators are reluctant in linking their personal Facebook accounts to their platform profile, as noticed by McGannon, they should at least add the project’s Facebook official page.
This action alone gives the opportunity to be recognized by other creators in the same industry and have a better visibility when applying to different crowdfunding groups on Facebook.
It is advisable to maintain a certain level of consistency, and have the same username for every Social Media channel in order to increase the likelihood of being remembered. An even more useful idea is to link the Twitter account with the Facebook one, which will automatically post tweets every time a post on Facebook has been shared.
The essence that needs to be grasped is that the more information is exposed, the better the campaign’s overall marketing reach and reputation will be.
These are indeed the core strategies that creators ought to follow when aiming at increasing their credibility among backers. What other strategies do you know/recommend?
*Disclaimer*: I have no interest in promoting the Tesla vs. Edison: Powering Up! campaign. The project is representative due to its high number of backed projects.
McGannon, M. (2014). Crowdfunding 101: Part 2 Improving your Kickstarter Profile and Project Page.