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How to Effectively Use Kickstarter to Fund Your Startup

How to Effectively Use Kickstarter to Fund Your Startup

by Kay WindersDecember 7, 2012

Capital can be the biggest roadblock to starting your own business—especially if you are creating a new product or are starting a tech business. Finding investors can be challenging, especially in this economy and especially if you are a new entrepreneur.

Kickstarter can help you get the money you need in the time you need it. The popular crowdfunding service has helped to raise millions of dollars for all types of businesses all around the world. However, you can’t just post your project and expect to watch the money come rolling in. You will need to get to know the site and develop a strategy for your fundraiser.

Here are a few tips for how you can effectively use Kickstarter to fund your startup.

Set Clearly Defined Goals

Without clear goals, you will be starting your business off on the wrong foot, and you won’t have a compelling case for backers to support you. Not only should you have clear goals for your fundraising, but you should also have clear goals for sales in your first year (and broken down by quarters), customer engagement, marketing, and more. If you can articulate these goals, you will inspire confidence in your backers and get more pledges.

Use Video and Other Visuals

Most successful projects have a professional-looking video on their page, and all have multiple professional-looking photos and other visuals (such as graphs or charts for their product). Take the time to produce quality visuals, and you will significantly increase your odds of success in your fundraising efforts. You can share images of your product, shoot a video of you or your team members explaining the concept for your product or service, put together a slideshow or teaser trailer, and more. Be creative!

Set Up Creative Incentives

With Kickstarter, your backers don’t just send you money because they really believe in your idea. They also get some sort of reward for their donation, with the value of the reward being commensurate with the value of the pledge. Low-level donations may get a public “thank you,” while bigger rewards could include a signed copy of the product or dinner with the artist. The more rewards you offer, and the more creative they are, the more pledges you are likely to get for your startup. Create rewards for a variety of pledge amounts so you can encourage the most people to pledge.

Promote, Promote, Promote

The more promotion you do, the more likely you are to get the funding you need.Unless you want to limit yourself to pledges from your family and friends, you are going to have to promote your Kickstarter project widely to get pledges. Social media is your ally. Create accounts on the top social networks, and promote your project through status updates, photos, and contests. Start a blog and post regular updates. Share your project on other blogs and forums to spread the word. The more promotion you do, the more likely you are to get the funding you need.

Crowdfunding sites like Kickstarter make it easy (or easier) to get the startup capital you need for your business. Using these tips, you can improve your chances of getting the full funding you need and making your startup idea a reality.

Do you have any experience with raising capital on Kickstarter? Share your tips for success in the comments!

Editor’s Note: Kay Winders is presently the resident writer for badcreditloans.org, where she researches the best way for people to pay off their debts without damaging their credit. In her spare time, she enjoys freelance writing, the beach and gardening.

About The Author
Kay Winders