When creators talk about building and planning to launch their crowdfunding campaigns, the first topic that comes up is, the funding goal! The entire marketing strategy and pre-campaign is built around reaching the funding goal, however, what happens once you reach it? Do you have a plan for when you succeed?
Yes, it’s true that of all the crowdfunding campaigns that launch, just about 40% of them will actually hit their funding goal, still in 2022 that’s 574,200 campaigns went live which means that 229,680 new products and projects will be shipping to their backers!
From my experience, here are the top 5 insights you should think about when building your success plan;
- Research Shipping & Fulfillment Rates BEFORE Launching
Why is it important to know the shipping and fulfillment rates before launching and setting your reward tiers?
First, once you launch your crowdfunding campaign, the shipping rates that you set cannot be changed and you will not be able to charge your backers more money in the future or once the campaign ends. So it’s important to have an idea of what the shipping will cost and know the fulfillment rates, more or less, in advance to include it in your product pricing.
You can get information on shipping and fulfillment rates for your product by contacting the shipping companies and fulfillment centers that you are considering using. Ask them for quotes on the cost of shipping and fulfillment for the product you are creating. Additionally, you should research the different shipping and fulfillment options available to you and compare the costs and services offered by each.
The cost of shipping a product to a customer will depend on the size and weight of the product, the distance it needs to travel, and the shipping method chosen. You should research the different shipping options available to you and compare the costs and services offered by each. Additionally, you should factor in any additional costs such as packaging materials, insurance, and taxes. Once you have determined the cost of shipping, you can then decide the shipping rate to write in, per country, in your reward tier.
Additionally, depending on where you ship from and if you will ship internationally, the backer or now your customer, might have to pay customs and VAT on the product. This is information that you should include to the backers up front.
- Set Realistic Shipping Dates
As mentioned in point #1 the information in the reward tiers cannot be updated once you launch or someone has backed that reward tier. This means that when you set your shipping date, it’s critical that you have a realistic idea of when your product actually will be ready to manufacture, how long this process will take, packaging it, shipping to the fulfillment center(s) and then shipping to your backers.
Backers of crowdfunding campaigns do understand that delays happen, it’s inevitable of course, but there is a big difference between delaying a shipment to a backer by a few months and year.
You will absolutely have to have a content strategy in place for keeping your backers informed, engaged and excited! That’s a great segway to point #3 below 🙂
- Have Content Strategy in Place
Content is everything, this is how your backers will get to learn about, engage with and share information about your product. You should first identify your target audience and create content that speaks to them. You will also want to create content that is engaging and shareable, and use social media to repurpose the content since not everyone reads the campaign updates or emails.
It’s important to create a content calendar or schedule to post regularly, they will expect to hear from you more during the campaign, but they will be most engaged once the campaign has ended and funded since they now know that they actually will receive the product they backed.
And of course, you will want to track the performance of your content and adjust your strategy accordingly to make sure that your backers are engaging with it.
- Be ready with customer support
Congratulations! You reached your funding goal, this now means you have your first group of customers, now you need to make sure that you are available to provide support to them in a timely manner. Your customers, these early adopters and supporters of your project will be or can be, your number one ambassadors and one way to ensure that they stay excited and happy about their investment in your project, is to ensure that they have EXCELLENT customer support.
You do not have to offer 24/7 customer support, however, being responsive, communicative and helpful with their questions during the normal work week and hours and replying within a day or two will ensure that they don’t, dare I say, turn on you.
It’s important to remember that customer support is a multi-channel mindset, replying not just via email and DM’s but also to the comments on your crowdfunding page and on social media posts. This helps future backers and customers build trust with your brand, they see that your company is being open and transparent, as well as responsive and helpful.
- Be transparent in the process
I’ll keep this one short since it should go without saying that being transparent with your backers (to a point) will only lead to positive feedback from your backers and encourage them to not only stay excited about your project but also share with their friends and family.
You don’t need to spell out every single detail of the company’s secrets and process, but ensuring that the backers are kept up to speed on the progress of the project and having regular updates and communication with them, with relevant information, not fluff pieces helps keep the excitement and engagement high from your community!
So, my question to you is, if you are thinking about or are in the middle of your crowdfunding campaign, will you optimize your marketing strategy to include a post-funding goal success strategy?
This guest blog post was provided by Cid Carver who has been working with innovative companies to build, manage, and launch their crowdfunding campaigns since 2016. If you are thinking about or are in the middle of your crowdfunding campaign, get in touch with Cid now to see how she can help you with your crowdfunding marketing strategy from idea to shipping.