By John Auckland, Founder of TribeFirst
One of the main reasons that the many equity crowdfunding campaigns never reach their minimum funding target is the lack of clear messaging. If you can clearly communicate your proposition in a way that resonates with investors and activates their imagination, you’ll stand a far better chance of getting funded.
Clear, compelling messaging is the key to a successful crowdfunding campaign. It’s the thread that runs through all your pitch materials telling investors why you are special, why they should invest, and why now is the perfect opportunity.
Find your story and get it down on paper!
Founders often jump to their idea, USPs, or the traction so far. Of course, these aspects are important, but it’s the story that triggers emotion, creates memories, and builds relationships.
Ask yourself: what’s the human and relatable part of the campaign? What was the story that brought me to this point?
If your initial draft is long-winded and unfocused, fear not – you can edit it later.
The one-minute pitch
Start by creating a 60-second pitch presentation, express in a clear and concise way all the good things about your business. These points can then be developed into a short script that can be used as a crowdfunding video.
Use your pitch to help create your video. Keep the video script short and succinct, this forces you to focus on the best, most unique aspects of the business and creates a clear, coherent message that can then be used across the rest of the campaign messaging.
Meeting an unmet need
Your value proposition: Who does your product or service help? What unmet need or problem do they face? How well does it meet and solve their needs? How many people have the same need? How urgent is the problem?
Consider other solutions or products that offer something similar. What needs are they addressing? How is your solution different? What makes it unique?
Often the best new business ideas aren’t those offering something entirely new, but those that dramatically improve on previous solutions in some important way. Unless your fantastic product addresses an unmet need, it fails to offer real value.
Finding your target audience
Your key messaging needs to be meaningful to your target audience, otherwise you will struggle to capture their imagination. Remember: know who you’re talking to. Don’t try to appeal to everyone, it’s impossible and will muddle your message. Instead, research your customers and investors and build profiles. Think about who they are, where they hang out, what they read, what channels they are on, etc.
Building target profiles will help you tailor your messaging and find the right channels to reach them. Investors, for example, are more likely to use LinkedIn regularly and read trade publications, making PR and LinkedIn outreach two key channels. Whereas, individual supporters may be more likely to spend their time on Facebook and watching videos on YouTube.
Knowing how your audience understands your product and industry, as well as where they spend their time online, allows you to hit them with meaningful messaging that will increase investment in your campaign.
Test your messaging
Ask friends, family, co-workers, investors, even strangers what they took away from your messaging. Did they immediately grasp your business idea? Were they moved by your founding story? Did they pick up on the key USPs you wanted to convey? Did they understand the benefits?
They should get the basics within a couple of sentences and understand most of the business in around a minute. Any longer, then your key messages aren’t clear or concise enough and you will struggle to communicate properly to your actual audience.
The success of crowdfunding campaign will always be determined by communication. There are lots of great businesses running equity crowdfunding campaigns; make yours stand out in all the right ways to hit your fundraising target!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
John Auckland is a crowdfunding specialist and founder of TribeFirst, a global equity crowdfunding communications agency that has helped raise in excess of £25m for over 60 companies on major equity crowdfunding platforms, with roughly a 90% success rate.
TribeFirst is the world’s first dedicated marketing communications agency to support equity crowdfunding campaigns and the first in the UK to provide PR and Marketing campaigns on a mainly risk/reward basis.
John is also Virgin StartUp’s crowdfunding trainer and consultant, helping them to run branded workshops, webinars and programmes on crowdfunding. John is passionate about working with start-ups and sees crowdfunding as more than just raising funds; it’s an opportunity to build a loyal tribe of lifelong customers and supporters.