10 Common Crowdfunding Mistakes

If your crowdfunding campaign is not reaching its target goals, you could be making these common mistakes! Approximately only one out of every three projects actually succeed at crowdfunding. Keep reading to learn the best initiatives you can use to increase your chances of reaching your fundraising goal.

10 Crowdfunding Mistakes To Avoid:

1. Your Title Is Not Effective
When it comes to creating a title for your campaign, you want to keep it short and to the point. Don’t make it too vague, and include your key point. Make sure your title is capitalized in the appropriate places, and avoid titles in all lowercase. A good title example would be: “Homeless Shelter: Help Underserved in California.”


2. Your Images Are Low Quality
A picture is worth a thousand words, so make sure the image you include speaks to your audience. Low-resolution and pixelated images will hinder your campaign. Positive images relate better to audiences than negative images, so ditch any dark and gloomy pictures and replace them with something light and happy. Some campaigns even fail to upload an image at all, and simply upload their logo (smh).
As you can see in our example, the image on the right is preferred, compared to the image on the left.


3. Your Description Lacks Structure
When it comes to writing a description, remember to include: who, what, why, where, and how. Writing a short sentence or paragraph will not inspire people to donate. Explain:
• Who you are (background on your organization, how long you’ve been serving the community)
• What you are doing (the services you are providing or the product you are wanting to expand)
• Why you are doing this (the story, facts, and/or data behind your cause)
• Where you will be serving (the location, area, or community that will benefit from these donations)
• How you will be using these donations (how these funds will be disbursed and what they will be used to purchase)


4. Poor Spelling and Grammar
Once you have written your description, it is important to check it for spelling, punctuation, and grammar. There are free online writing tools available to assist you, so there should be no excuse for errors. If your campaign is littered with spelling mistakes, it does not only put potential donors off from contributing, but can also reflect poorly on your organization.


5. There’s No Incentive
Don’t make the assumption that everyone is willing to put money into your campaign out of the goodness of their hearts. The most successful campaigns offer rewards in exchange for the amount donated. Your incentives can come in a variety of forms for a range of donation tiers. For example:
• Donate $20 and be featured on our website (or your next newsletter – generating exposure for them helps you too).
• Donate $50 and receive a custom hat (or apparel/accessories – give back to your supporters with something for them to wear).
• Donate $100 or more to receive x2 tickets to our next gala (or your product, services, or event).


6. You Don’t Thank Your Donors
If someone has contributed to your campaign, it’s nice for them to feel acknowledged. You can thank your donors with hand-written notes, personalized emails, or even pick up the phone and call. This gesture may also encourage them to donate again, or spread the news with their friends and family.


7. You Don’t Get Social
The assumption that the hard work is done after you create your campaign is far from the truth. Now that your crowdfunding campaign is active, it’s time to share it out! The more exposure you create for your campaign, the more donations you are likely to receive. The most obvious place to share your campaign URL is on social media: Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn… the list goes on. Sharing your campaign URL to Facebook groups is also an advantage if your Facebook page lacks followers. If you don’t have the key social media accounts, you may want to consider creating accounts on these platforms.


8. There’s No Initial Capital
Your friends, family, and colleagues are vital to get your fundraiser off the ground. Once your campaign has launched, your initial donations should be from those closest to you. Without introductory donations from those that know you, your cause can lack the appeal to others. If your friends, family, and colleagues aren’t willing to donate to your campaign, then why would strangers contribute?


9. Your Goal is Unrealistic
Setting too high of a funding goal is a common reason why crowdfunding campaigns fail. Donors know the difference between a genuine amount needed and when you are simply asking for too much. It’s best to ask for too little, rather than too much, as you can always update your amount at a later date. Undertake an assessment of the financial needs for your cause and enter the minimum amount needed that will make a difference.


10. You Don’t Continuously Promote It
There are so many ways to keep up the momentum of your crowdfunding campaign. Create exciting posts, write blogs, submit press releases, upload videos, and report any progress! Besides social media, you can also promote your campaign on different avenues, such as your website and in your e-newsletters (if you have a mailing list). Don’t be afraid to push your campaign on a regular basis. Promoting it once will not usually suffice. The key to marketing is repetition!

Creating Your Campaign

There are over 1,500 different crowdfunding platforms available. When you select a platform, the key features you should look for include the fees and the targeting. Some crowdfunding platforms take a percentage from your donations, while other platforms like YouHelp.com do not. Usually, there is a processing fee which you may occur by the payment merchant or credit card processor, which is generally 2.9% plus 30 cents per transaction. Each platform usually caters to a specific market. You’ll find there are crowdfunding sites that are targeted towards nonprofits, entrepreneurs, and personal fundraising. Obviously, you wouldn’t want to sign up with a platform that is aimed at nonprofits if you are trying to generate funds for a personal cause.

We hope these tips can help your crowdfunding campaign succeed, and wish you the best in your fundraising goals!

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