One question Nalin often gets is- “How do you get complete strangers on the internet to back your project and give you money?” To that we say- great question!
It’s one thing to get people who know and love you to back your projects, but getting complete strangers from the internet? That’s a totally different thing altogether. What’s even stranger is that somehow it’s those people who we don’t even know that we want to win over more than those we are closest to.
In this episode, we go over four different reasons why internet strangers will choose to support your campaign. By knowing these four reasons you will be able to set yourself up with a campaign that will have people believing in you as a business and entrepreneur.
[0:40]: Why Strangers Are Better Than Family
How is it that we get more satisfaction from complete strangers backing our projects then our own friends and family?
[2:11]: 1- Social Proof
How social proof can make someone rationalize why your project isn’t worth their time.
[8:31]: 2- Reach Your Goal Early
Everyone wants to support a winner. So, let’s talk about what that looks like.
[11:16]: 3- Get Badges Of Honor
Visual representations of your trustworthiness and legitimacy will go a long way in your crowdfunding success.
[15:11]: 4- Testimonials
Who better to tell you about a product then someone you trust and whose opinion you value!?
[16:43]: Recap of 4 Ways To Win Over Those Internet Strangers
Recap of four reasons internet strangers will support your campaign.
Resources From This Episode
campaign, launch, project, social proof, badges, product, indiegogo, people, backers, testimonials, talking, page, random strangers, funding, strangers, crowdfunding, ces, support, crush, kickstarter
This is the crush crowdfunding podcast, the number one place for people who want to launch on
Kickstarter and Indiegogo. My name is Nalin and I invite you to join me for tips, hacks, and insights to
get you launched and fully funded.
Welcome to another episode of the crush crowdfunding podcast. I’m so excited to have you here today and to talk to you about crowdfunding and talk about how you can absolutely crush your goals on Kickstarter and Indiegogo.
I think it's great that family and friends will support you in what you're doing. I think it's really, really great that they've committed to pledge when you launch on Kickstarter and when you go live on Indiegogo. However, the problem is that most of us, if we were to be honest with ourselves, want strangers to do that. We want strangers to be the ones to back us and support us in our funding on these crowdfunding platforms. We want people that we don't even know to support our campaign. That's actually one of the biggest reasons why people go to Kickstarter or use a campaign platform like Indiegogo. It’s because they can find and be connected to random strangers that will actually really like their idea and join in on their journey to bringing their project to launch just by backing on the crowdfunding platform itself.
That's a common question that I get all the time. “How do you actually get people who you don't know at all and who are random strangers on the internet to give you money and back your project? How do you win them over?” To that I say - there four different reasons why internet strangers will come bumbling through and support your campaign and your journey to launching your product.
1- Social Proof
The first concept I want to draw your attention to is the marketing concept called “social proof.” I know it might sound like a really fancy word or something that you might not have even heard of before. Because of that, let's break it down a little bit. Let's say that you're browsing Indiegogo and you come across this new campaign. It literally just launched and you're looking around seeing what's happening. You see that it has zero funding; that no one has backed it yet. You see that there's no activity whatsoever on it at all. Zero. Done.
What are some of the things that are going through your head? What are some of the thoughts that you have right now coming to this project? Coming to this campaign and looking through the page and seeing nothing happen at all. Well, that's probably going to vary from person to person, however, some of the things are going to be - “Hmm. Why is there no funding on this page at all? Is it one of those scam projects that I read about under the news?” Or people might even say, “Okay, this is kind of interesting. I only have 10 minutes left off of my lunch break and I'm not really going to take the time to watch this three minute video because no one else seems to be interested. I'll just click around and go look at some other projects that are on Indiegogo that are more interesting that already have thousands of backers because clearly those must be good.” There's no emotion there.
Nothing about a campaign that has zero backers, zero funding, and zero activity piques my curiosity. A campaign like this doesn't pique anyone's curiosity at all. Clearly it's not that great of a product if no one's backing it. Or, someone else might even come in and think, “Hmm, this is kind of odd. Why? Why is it that no one has supported this campaign at all? Why is it that there's no funding at all whatsoever? Is it because this person isn't serious about crowdfunding? Is it because this is a really bad idea? Well, either way, I'm a good person and I don't want to be suckered into giving money or be the first person to give money to this project so I'm just going to click away.”
There are three different things that people might talk about when they come to your page and see that there are no backers, no funding, nothing happening on the actual page itself. When there's no social proof your mind creates different rationalizations as to why this is not a good project that deserves your time.
Now, when that project does have social proof it's very similar to a book being a best seller. When someone says, “I'm an Amazon best selling author,” you're more likely than not to turn around and at least see what they have to say and see what they're talking about. They have that stamp of approval by someone else already. They have that social proof.
Going back to that book example- when a book is a best seller and a lot of other people like it you're more likely to take a second to at least read the first chapter of the book or look at the back cover to see what it's about. The reason is that if other people are liking that book then you probably might like it too, right? If there's 1,000 other people talking about that book and about how amazing it is or if it's number one on the New York Times Best Sellers list then you're probably going to think there's some weight to that. There is clearly something in that book that is going to potentially draw your attention.
The same thing goes with crowdfunding campaigns. If you come to a project that has a lot of funding and has a lot of people who have already backed it then it looks really exciting. There's new things and new updates all the time and a lot of comments and a lot of things that are going on in the campaign itself. If that's the case then your curiosity gets involved. You'll be thinking to yourself, “Okay, what is everyone talking about? What is this thing?” You'll be willing to watch the video and you'll start to have more thoughts that are almost polar opposite to what you'd have with a campaign that doesn't have any social proof. It's the total opposite of what we were talking about earlier.
Some thoughts you might have are actually, “Hey, this looks really cool. I don't know exactly if this is going to work or exactly what this thing is but look at all these other people. This looks like fun. I'm going to try throwing some money at this.” You don't feel that level of awkwardness or weirdness as you would with a campaign that has no funding. You might also think, “Wow, this is really neat. I didn't actually know if anything else was out there but I’ll at least take a second to read through the campaign page and watch the video because this looks kind of cool. There's a lot of other people already excited about it so there's probably some weight to the things that they're talking about here.” You're willing to spend more time and attention on this one project.
That's one way to get internet strangers to become backers for your campaign and contribute funds to your project. Have that social proof and those other people who will also vouch for your campaign by contributing funds to it early on and quickly so that when strangers start coming to your page and see your page pop up in different areas of the Indiegogo or Kickstarter platform they click into your page. This will give them a reason to stay and to look at your page and your project and learn more about you because other people are excited about it too.
So, the number one way to do this is to really work up your pre-launch marketing and get those people excited about your project before you launch. And then, when you do launch, funnel people into your campaign and have them back, support, and contribute funds to your project. That way, you're increasing the social proof that others see on your page.
2- Reach Your Goal Early
The second thing I want to talk about today, which is another really simple trick to get internet strangers to support your campaign, plays off of the first point. The thing I want to tell you about today is to reach your goal early. One of the best ways to get people to support you is to honestly just reach your goal early because everyone wants to support a winner. Everyone wants to support something that they know is going to come to life. Everyone wants something else that other people are supporting, too. They don't want to be left out. They don't want to be left behind. They want to be part of the “in” group. That's why F.O.M.O. (Fear Of Missing Out) is a real thing.
People want to be a part of something that's bigger than themselves. So, from your point you want to reach your goal early because what that means is - one, people see that you are definitely going to be at least attempting to make your product and that you have fully funded all the funds that you need to actually use to make this product come to life. So they want to believe that you're probably going to at least attempt to do it.
The second reason you want to reach your goal early is because people will see that this thing is a hot topic that everyone, everywhere wants to get right now. If on day one an hour into your launch you've already hit your goal of $20,000 they'll see that there's a lot of people out there who really wanted the product so much so that it's only been two hours since it launched and they already have to get it. People were already pouring in and contributing so much funding to get you to your goal.
Another reason is that if you actually reach your goal early the really seasoned backers on Kickstarter or pro backers on Indiegogo will know that you've actually spent time and effort doing the whole crowdfunding thing, right? They'll know that you understand the process of crowdfunding, the process of finding an audience, activating the audience, pushing your audience to your campaign, and actually having your audience support your idea through backing the project early.
If they know subconsciously that you're finding the right audience by seeing you reach your goal early, then they're going to trust you, trust the way that you run the campaign, and trust the actual product itself more just because they know that you've done that legwork beforehand to reach your goal early.
That's the second trick to getting internet strangers to support your campaign when you do launch - reach your goal early.
3- Get Badges Of Honor
The third thing I want to talk about today is also really important. So, we have talked about social proof and reaching your goal early. The third thing I want to touch on today is to get badges of honor. This is really different for each project and industry. You need to be sure that you do the research before you launch to see what other people in your same category have done before.
Badges of honor tell the visitors who come to your campaign that, essentially, you are legitimate. These badges of honors are third-party respected reviewers out there who have provided you with an award, top award, or stamp of approval somehow in the industry. Potential backers are way more likely to back a hardware tech that has received the famous CES (Consumer Electronics Show) award than one that hasn’t. It provides more legitimacy and proof to your project.
Another way to think about this is that the badge of honor tells people that you are trustworthy; that your product is trustworthy. It says that your project has been through a third party, non biased review of other cool, awesome projects. This is really different for each project and each category, so be sure to look deep into your category and see what people receive as badges of honor.
Let's talk about an example. We talked about CES already. If you have a CES badge being showcased at CES, or if you have an innovation award from CES then a lot of people who back tech products on Kickstarter or really high tech hardware products on Indiegogo know that this is a really coveted award. They know that not a lot of people get it. They know that a lot of people get submitted for it and get considered for it but not a lot of people actually get it. So, when people see this particular award on a crowdfunding page, Kickstarter, or Indiegogo they're more likely to trust that this thing is going to come to life.
They're more likely to trust that there is a powerhouse team behind the project solely because it takes a lot of effort to be noticed by these third party reviewers. It takes a lot of time and effort to actually be considered and be chosen. You need a good product or maybe an app that goes with it. You need to have good materials in general and that's just talking about hardware tech.
If it's for a game or for apparel there's different badges of honor in those different categories. If it's a game then maybe you've won play testing contests or you've won a game design contest or you've won Best Family Game award or something in the past year. Some award that you can put on the page itself to have people say, “Oh, wow! This thing has been around for a while. This thing has been considered by third party reviewers and this thing has the chops to actually get a badge of honor.”
When you're looking at something like apparel, there's a lot of new apparel that's coming to town. There's things like an all-in-one travel jacket or thermal pads. There's all these new cool things that are coming out to the market. One way to get this badge of honor is to go and find people who are well respected in the industry and get their stamp of approval. It can be either a contest or a pitch competition. Anything at all that you can use in order to showcase your legitimacy.
Again, this is the third thing that I hope you consider for your crowdfunding campaign because it does get internet strangers to trust in you and to believe that you are legitimate. They will believe that your project and campaign is legitimate.
The last thing to consider when it comes to getting internet strangers to support your campaign is kind of simple but also difficult in a way. It's testimonials. All right. Another way to get the idea out there that a lot of people want, love, and are excited about your product is to gather testimonials. It can be from everyone. It can be from friends and family to people that are beta testing the product who have sampled the product, tried the product, or have experienced the product. It can even be testimonials from people like influencers. Instead of getting a badge of approval, award, or a CES award that we talked about earlier you can get a testimonial from someone who's really high up who is really influential in the perspective space.
For example, if you're trying to launch a new hiking backpack - there are a lot of people out there who are influencers in the hiking world. People who review different products could say, “Hey, this one is the best thing that I've seen since sliced bread.” If that is a review that you get from a really targeted influencer and someone who's really trustworthy in that specific category then - heck yeah! Use that testimonial on your page because it is a way for you to get people to trust in you and find you credible in the sea of everything else that's on crowdfunding that's being launched.
So there we go. We talked today about the four different things that you can do to get internet strangers to support your campaign. One, get a lot of social proof for your project. Two, reach your goal early. Three, get those badges of honor. And, four, get testimonials for your project and put it everywhere you can.
Those four things will get people to believe in you as a business, believe in you as an entrepreneur, and believe in your product. Specifically, they’ll believe in the quality of the product, the actual viability of the product, the credibility of the product, and will ensure that you look legitimate in the eyes of all these strangers who are going to be coming to your page.
So, thank you for being with me here today. If you need a crowdfunding expert, feel free to get in touch. You can get started by heading to crushcrowdfunding.com.
Lastly, I would be extremely grateful if you could leave a review for the podcast because it will really help others who want to learn about crowdfunding find out about the podcast a lot easier.
Thank you so much for being here with me, subscribing to the podcast, and for continuing to listen as we go on this journey to crowdfund your product and your idea. I will see you guys in the next session.
Thanks for listening to the crush crowdfunding podcast at crushcrowdfunding.com. Tune in at the same time next week for more ways to crush your launch.
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