11 Tips for Building an Outstanding Landing Page for Crowdfunding Campaign
Today a crowdfunding campaign is an effective way of raising money for a new project. It is being successfully used not only by startups but also by leading brands, such as Google, Facebook or Lego.
But how to start a crowdfunding campaign and connect to potential investors? We know all the secret and would be happy to share our expertise with you.
How to start a crowdfunding campaign
Raising money for a project is not an easy task, and it is very important to approach the matter correctly. It means you need a thorough crowdfunding campaign preparation. Any overlooked detail can lead to failure.
We will provide you with a few tips for a successful crowdfunding campaign to help you put the idea into practice.
#1. Formulation of the idea. Goal setting
Since you are thinking of how to start a crowdfunding campaign, you probably have the Idea we are talking about. Now it's time to formulate it correctly. In other words, the idea should become a concrete and achievable goal.
Write down what exactly you want to create (open, develop, and so on), why the world needs it, and how much money you lack to make your idea a reality. It’s not the brand story yet, it’s just the basis to create it.
All successful fundraising campaigns able to lead donors to the call-to-action start with thorough market research. More precisely, you should analyze:
- consumer needs. Will your product (or service) really be in demand? And how can you enhance its benefits?
- successes and failures of competitors. Surely, campaigns similar to yours have already been conducted. Explore them and try to understand their pros and cons so that you won't repeat others' mistakes. Your goal is to connect to potential investors, not to fail.
#3. Choice of the crowdfunding platform
There are two main types of crowdfunding, and they are intended to help different startups. Platforms such as Kickstarter and Indiegogo use the reward principle: in exchange for financial support of the project, backers get an appropriate award (most often, it’s the product itself). Such crowdfunding campaigns are the best option if creative teams are interested in raising money for a project and need about $50 thousand or less.
There are also platforms like Fundable.com which are based on the principle of equity participation. In this case, an accredited investor can get some of the company's shares for the contribution made. These campaigns are most suitable to businessmen who want to connect to potential investors to get $ 50.000 and more.
Important: avoid starting your project on several platforms at once. It’s not the way to launch successful crowdfunding campaigns because:
- you’ll find it difficult to pay sufficient attention to several platforms;
- such inconsistency of actions may cause people to distrust.
By the way, you should not ignore such an important resource as CrunchBase.
CrunchBase is an online database of companies, people, and investors, which is made in the wiki style (that is, anyone is allowed to edit it). Make sure information about your brand is included in the database. In addition, here you can find out about various financial organizations and investors. These data are your best chance to finance a crowdfunding project.
#4. The marketing strategy of the crowdfunding project
Remember, you should encourage interest in your campaign on your own means. Kickstarter and IndieGoGo are doing a great job of promoting noteworthy projects, but most of the funds (usually 80-90%) come from outside the platform.
Ideally, your audience is being created in advance with emails, blogs, and social networks. Therefore, you need to draw up a marketing plan before launching the campaign.
#5. Detailed action plan
Not only does the marketing strategy need a detailed plan. All your actions should be determined beforehand and recorded in the calendar.
Undoubtedly, drafting a crowdfunding campaign checklist is an important stage of preparation and a hope to succeed.
#6. Social media
If you want to join the ranks of successful fundraising campaigns, start working on creating an audience on social networks. By the way, this is an integral part of your marketing plan.
Subsequently, you should use your social media pages to advertise and promote your campaign. The more you have friends, followers, and readers, the more chances of raising money for a project.
Important: do not delay with SMM marketing, get down to action a few months before the launch.
#7. 20-30% rule
We assume that you have many friends willing to support your endeavor. Be sure to contact them in advance and persuade to become active participants in your project. According to statistics, successful crowdfunding campaigns often collect the initial 20-30% of the total amount thanks to the contributions of acquaintances. So such a tactic is aimed to help you connect to potential investors and lead donors to the call-to-action.
Why does it work? Because other backers are more likely to give money if they see that your idea has already interested someone.
If your friends are not able to financially participate in your project, ask them to help in the dissemination of information - using social networks and the effect of word of mouth, or something else.
#8. Deadline of your crowdfunding project
Now it's time to think about the timing of your campaign. It is advised to choose a period between 1 day and 2 months.
However, here we need a golden mean: if a deadline you've set is too short, the task of raising money for a project becomes more difficult. On the other hand, a long campaign period will indicate your uncertainty and cause doubts in potential contributors.
Successful fundraising campaigns usually last about 30 days. As statistics shows, if you have a crowdfunding campaign preparation plan, 1 month is quite enough to get the desired result.
#9. Drawing up the budget
Among other tips for a successful crowdfunding campaign, you should especially remark this one. Determine the budget you need, but do not boost it, correlate your requests and audience paying capacities. At some fundraising platforms, if you have collected less than half of the amount claimed, you will not get a penny - the money will return to backers.
In addition, do not raise the lower limit of contributions to a high level - anyone who wants to help should get the opportunity to participate. Backer can return to you again and make a larger contribution or bring friends.
As you see, you need to take into account a lot of factors and make a detailed plan of the crowdfunding campaign preparation - only then the game is worth the candle.
So you have 2 options: you can get down to business on your own or contact a professional company to get expert advice. The second way of action is the best choice if you doubt your abilities to get it right and do not want to take chances.
We’ll try to explain what a professional consultation is by using our own example. We’ll show the way the Agilie team is working on crowdfunding projects.
At the first stage, we carry out a design analysis of your brand and give our professional opinion about its visual integrity.
You fill in a detailed brief which includes questions about such components of your brand as the identity, logo, website, etc.. Then you’ll get a competent and thorough analysis and a set of recommendations. Of course, we necessarily argue our position.
At the second stage of the crowdfunding project consultation, we analyze your marketing plan and give you tips on how to adjust it, if it is required. If you do not have the resources to conduct an effective marketing campaign, we are happy to provide you with our professional assistance. Yes, we know ways to lead donors to the call-to-action through marketing tactics.
We use the latest tools to analyze the effectiveness of your project. It's important to have such data to find out how to start a crowdfunding campaign leading to great success.
We study such KPIs as:
- Revenue Growth Rate
- Economic Value Added
- Return on Investment
- Cash Conversion Cycle
- Customer Retention Rate
- Customer Satisfaction Index & Lifetime Value
- Market Growth Rate
- Brand Equity
- Cost per Lead
- Conversion Rate
- Search Engine Rankings (by keyword) and click-through rate
- Customer Online Engagement Level
Based on the received data, we create special metrics, which illustrate the effectiveness of your business processes.
#4. Strategy Analysis
Now we are ready to analyze your crowdfunding project strategy including such aspects as:
- Your goals. How clearly do you understand what you want to get?
- Tools. What tools do you plan to use to promote your project? Are they effective?
- Crowdfunding platforms. Where do you plan to launch your project?
#5. The plan of actions
At the last stage, we should summarize all the information we’ve gotten and provide you with more specific tips for a successful crowdfunding campaign. Among other things, we are going to:
- conduct detailed research and competitive analysis;
- give advice on the possible ways to distinguish your brand from competitors;
- create efficiency metrics and teach you how to use them in the process of working on your project;
- compose a calendar of events - a special crowdfunding campaign checklist which will tell you when and what you should do to achieve the most effective result.
In other words, we'll tell you in detail how to crowdfund a project. However, we’ll not put it on a waiting list, we’d like to give you some advice right now.
What you need to run a successful crowdfunding campaign
To raise money through crowdfunding, you need to have a good idea and actively promote the project. But all your efforts can go wrong without first-grade design.
To "sell" the idea, you should package it beautifully. So, how to start a crowdfunding campaign, what do you need to have to do it right and connect to potential investors?
#1. Product prototype
We, the people, are mostly visuals. We need to see in order to understand, realize and feel. Therefore, you may take all your time to describe what exactly you plan to create, but no story can compare with the visual prototype of your product in efficiency. In some cases, such a prototype is a prerequisite - especially if you launch the program on the Kickstarter platform.
A website that illustrates your idea in the most beneficial way is also a "must-have" condition to get successful crowdfunding campaigns. And instead of building a multipage resource, it is best to develop a landing page. Yes, we’re talking about landing pages for crowdfunding, they would be the most profitable format to promote your project. In addition, such a site is an opportunity to create in advance the base of e-mail addresses of people who can become your contributors in the future - so, it’s the opportunity to connect to potential investors.
We advise starting the landing page and its advertising a few months before the launch of the campaign itself to guarantee the most efficient result.
However, the site creation is a very important topic, and we’ll cover it in more detail a little later. We’ll explain to you the best way to create a crowdfunding landing page of the highest quality, just keep reading.
#3. Brand story
Tell in detail about your product, convince backers that your idea is worth their contributions. And do your best, let it be a really fascinating story!
Explain why your project is special and who will find it useful. People want to be involved in outstanding things, and they will rather go after someone who captures their imagination.
Of course, it is important to tell your story clearly and intelligibly. The contributor will want to participate in the project only if he understands what is at stake.
#4. Brand Identity
Your idea is your brand. And any brand implies having a harmonious corporate identity which includes a logo, color range, style of material feeding, etc. If you have not thought about it yet, now is the time (if you’re really interested in raising money for a crowdfunding project).
#5. Colorful Presentations
It would be smart to create a bright and colorful presentation of your crowdfunding project (in PDF or another format). Describe and illustrate your idea, make it interesting to read. In short, your presentation should be really convincing.
How to use it? It's very simple! Send the file to all email addresses collected during the pre-launching period, remind of your project again.
Although not every crowdfunding platform makes video a must, all successful fundraising campaigns use such a technique to their advantage. So your project can greatly benefit if you record a short introductory video to explain why backers should give you money to implement your brilliant idea.
Make sure the video attracts the viewer and transmits the message in a concise form. If the video turned out to be long, it is very important that it draws the attention of potential backers throughout its length.
And now we proceed to the next stage of the issue regarding how to start a crowdfunding campaign. Namely, we'll discuss such a subject as…
How to create a crowdfunding landing page of the best quality
Interested in how to start a crowdfunding campaign? Then you should first find out the best way to create a crowdfunding landing page, a professional one. After all, the success of the project largely depends on the quality of your website. And your task at this stage is to intelligibly explain to future investors what your product is about. So, your landing pages for crowdfunding must be clear and trustworthy, that is, credible.
But how to achieve the goal and connect to potential investors? How to create a landing page which can become a reliable basis to launch successful crowdfunding campaigns?
Happily, we know the answer.
#1. Background image
They say you never get a second chance to make a first impression. Therefore, the initial image plays a primary role.
This is the background picture that the person who has opened your page sees at the first moment. And the feelings which he experiences will later be associated with your brand, with your idea. So, your chance of raising money for a project depends on the initial impression.
What should the initial image be like?
- Quality. The resolution of the image should be as high as possible.
- Contrast with information blocks. Otherwise, the call-to-action will remain nearly invisible.
- Corresponding to your idea. That is, the picture you have chosen should create an understanding of what exactly you are offering.
#2. The headline & byline
In addition to the initial picture, the first impression is influenced by the headline and byline. This is your key message to the backers, the chance to connect to potential investors.
Headlines of landing pages for crowdfunding should be short, capacious, expressive. It’s your call-to-action, appeal to potential contributors. The headline must be conspicuous and memorable, it has to intrigue so that a person gets a desire to study the page in more detail. The success means you managed to lead donors to the call to action.
As to the byline, its role is to convey the main advantages of the project and, so to speak, decipher the headline idea.
#3. The first block
And again, we are talking about the first impression. Yes, the top of your landing page (the first block which is visible without scrolling) must be really impressive. This is the way successful fundraising campaigns can be launched.
So, what should the 1st block contain? Let’s analyze so that you would be able to create a crowdfunding landing page with the highest selling potential (and you ARE selling - your product is the idea, you need to find a way to connect to potential investors and lead donors to the call-to-action).
The call-to-action must be in sight. It’s one of the most crucial elements of landing pages for crowdfunding. In the end, we create a landing page to induce a person to perform a certain action, which means we need a call to this action.
Of course, in each case, the call-to-action is unique, but now we are talking about how to crowdfund a project, so the action implies (as a rule) gathering email addresses. The database created in such a way is useful to you when you start a campaign.
The call-to-action should be:
- expressed in an imperative tone (“do something!”)
Follow these tips, and you’ll be able to lead donors to the call-to-action.
We have already talked about the initial (background) picture. So, it must necessarily include the image of your product.
Take care of the picture quality, because sun an image should impress and convince that there is the need of raising money for a crowdfunding project.
The main promise
Do not force the visitor to scroll your page to find out what you'd like to offer. The first block must include a convincing promise - the reason why the potential backer should leave his email. Connect to potential investors through the promise!
The main rule of an effective promise is to focus on the needs of your contributors. Don’t say what YOU need. Tell them what THEY need (and, preferably, why). If you have no idea what they may need, you won't be able to create a crowdfunding landing page, you’ll fail! So figure the issue out, it’s your priority task.
In fact, the headline, byline, and call-to-action must become a logical part of the promise. Do not waste extra words - the excess of information only scares people away.
Believe us, your crowdfunding campaign checklist should include work on a beautiful and convincing promise, so give it enough time.
Actually, not all successful fundraising campaigns have videos in the first block of the page. But sometimes such an approach can be decisive, especially if your record is really convincing. By the way, you may just leave a nicely decorated link to your video spot, not a file itself. The example below illustrates the idea.
So think about it. Effective landing pages for crowdfunding often (but not always) have video presentations.
If you have failed to persuade a backer to leave his email address with your first site block, you need to continue convincing him that your product deserves attention. In other words, the next landing page block should be dedicated to the benefits of your idea.
How should these benefits be designed to lead donors to the call to action?
- split them up into items. It is desirable to supplement each benefit with a small graphic image (a sort of "bullet point");
- be brief, but convincing;
- promise something able to make the life of a backer better or solve his problem.
Another block can be devoted to reviews if you have any. Maybe, you have already tried to implement your idea and have received good feedbacks - share them! And explain that the renewal of work requires raising money for a project. Let the backers see that your product (or service) is worth their contributions. Such an approach may lead donors to the call-to-action too.
#6. Call-to-Action, again and again!
Do not hesitate to repeat this block several times. You must lead donors to the call-to-action, and the reiteration facilitates the process.
Perhaps, you could not convince a contributor right away, and he decided to study your page in detail before making a decision. And if so, it'll be smart of you to save him from having to scroll upwards when (and if) such a decision is made.
#7. Responsive design
Responsive design is an obvious, but a very important condition to create a crowdfunding landing page able to become really effective. We mean your site should look equally good on the screen of any resolution: desktop, smartphone, tablet…
#8. Clear fonts and contrasting colors
Among other things, your crowdfunding campaign checklist should include work on the fonts and colors of your landing page. Use contrasting background and clear fonts. Both of these factors increase readability, making it easier to study the details of your project. So, there is more chance that the site visitor will remain on the page and do what you ask him to (that is, he'll follow the call-to-action).
Yes, such trifles also help connect to potential investors.
#9. Social Media Buttons
As we have already mentioned, you need to start SMM marketing as early as possible. Therefore, it will be logical to supplement your site with a link to your pages on social networks. Successful crowdfunding campaigns act in this very way.
#10. The loading speed of landing pages for crowdfunding
As Amazon discovered, accelerating page load by 100 milliseconds leads to an increase in profit by 1%. The reason is simple - a modern person is not happy to wait, because every minute counts. So, your landing page should load really quickly - otherwise, you risk losing a fair amount of your visitors, potential contributors. And this reduces your chances of raising money for a project.
The download speed depends on many factors including high-resolution pictures. But we don’t mean that you need to give up qualitative images in favor of the bad ones. Perhaps the best option is to consult with experienced web developers who know all the subtleties of creating a landing page.
#11. A/B Testing
Let’s imagine that you managed to create a crowdfunding landing page. Not your site has been designed, and you are ready to pre-launch it... But first of all, it is necessary to find out whether your landing page is effective and corresponds to the expectations of potential visitors. Therefore, you need to perform A/B testing. It’s the best way to avoid possible errors and achieve maximum conversions. So it’s the best way to make your crowdfunding project successful.
As we have mentioned earlier, successful fundraising campaigns always have compelling stories. In fact, your landing page is designed to illustrate this very story, briefly and straight, emotionally and reasonably... All the techniques and tools we've described serve such a purpose and lead donors to the call-to-action. In other words, the above secrets are aimed to convince future bakers that you really need their money... or, more accurately, they need your idea implemented.
Landing page constructor or development agency: what to choose for campaign preparation
So, we’ve figured out the criteria of effective landing pages for crowdfunding, but who should develop your site? In fact, there are 2 main options:
- using templates and constructors
- professional help
Of course, there are many free (or cheap) constructors, which allow you to create a crowdfunding landing page on your own... but how effective are these tools?
Let's find out!
- fast. Yes, constructors allow you to create a site quickly enough, although it all depends on the level of your skill. Therefore, such an advantage cannot be considered unconditional.
- cheap. Of course, constructors are cheap, there's no arguing. However, this is clearly not the case when you need to save, the stakes are too high. After all, your goal means raising money for a project.
- available. You can work on your website whenever and wherever you are comfortable, on any day of the week including weekends.
- low-grade quality. If you are not a professional designer, do not expect high quality. There is a chance that you will fail to come up with a good headline or create a convincing Call To Action... As a result, you will not be able to collect the desired investments.
- a template solution. Alas, a constructor is a big risk to create a boring site - one in a million... such a page will instantly get lost among its own kind.
- It's not safe. When it comes to sites, there is a security issue. Landing pages for crowdfunding created by amateurs are much easier to hack than a resource developed by professionals
Almost all successful crowdfunding campaigns involve professional expertise. This applies to the development of sites either.
A professionally created landing page is the best way to achieve a flawless result and stand out from the competition. Of course, there are some pitfalls too, but they are easy to avoid.
- quality. The main thing is professionalism supported by a systematic approach to the development process and extensive experience in the implementation of various projects.
- a strategy. Usually, a professional agency offers not just the creation of a website your campaign needs, it is about developing a full-fledged strategy. You will be offered a turn-key solution, from A to Z.
- a team of professionals. You will cooperate not only with web developers but also with a whole staff of experts: product managers, designers, copywriters, marketers, testers, etc.
- a documented process. As a rule, all the processes of the site development are regulated and documented. Consequently, you will always be able to know in advance the deadline of each development stage, and its cost.
- expensive. But aren't you thinking of raising money for a project? Include this expense item when calculating your budget.
- quite long. You can't rush real experts (at least, too much), but the result of the professional approach exceeds expectations. Just start your campaign well in advance, and the factor of duration will not bother you.
Of course, it's up to you to decide what option to choose. And yet, we are convinced that experience and expertise should come first. Only real professionals are skilled enough to create a crowdfunding landing page able to bring your idea to life.
The Final Tips
We’d like to give you some more tips for successful fundraising campaigns, so to say, for the last bit:
- answer all comments to your posts on social networks as quickly as possible;
- track traffic sources. There are many tools to help you monitor traffic and its source. The data obtained would help in building and adjusting the crowdfunding project strategy;
- save the database of contacts. By the time your campaign is completed, you will have the base of contacts of the backers who have provided you with financial assistance. It will be useful to stay in touch with them (through the newsletter which describes how your project is progressing)
- show how you've spent the money, provide the corresponding report on the matter. Business transparency helps to gain confidence in your campaign and helps in raising money for a project;
- thank each backer personally. And do not violate your obligations, even when it comes to such a trifle as the timely delivery of a parcel with a gift you've promised;
- pay attention to the packaging of your product. It should look really beautiful.
By the way, our Agilie company employs only high-skilled experts who know how to start a crowdfunding campaign.