HELP! The Crowdfund-A-Dream quick guide to Crowdfunding
What is Crowdfunding?
Put simply, crowdfunding is pooling together the financial resources of a group of people to fund a project or idea. Put less simply….go check out Wikipedia.
Is it easy?
Sure. The news is filled with stories about people tossing up a Kickstarter online, and walking off 30 days later with a few million dollars. If Zack Braff and the guy who made that pebble watch and a guy making potato salad can do it, why can’t you?
Well, as is often the case, there is a bit more to the story. First, you need an idea. Then, you need to be able to put together an effective campaign for that idea based on your unique strengths and weaknesses. And then you need to effectively run that campaign. From pre-launch, launch day, and then through the entire course of the campaign. And then you need to deliver on a lot of promises. Done properly, it can almost be easy (almost.) But if you are approaching crowdfunding as a quick way to make a few bags of cash, you might want to look elsewhere.
What crowdfunding portal should I use? Kickstarter? IndieGoGo? CrowdRise?
There are now hundreds of crowdfunding portals, with new ones arriving every week.
Most of these will barely be used and will vanish in time. And though Kickstarter is a good choice for many projects, there are still some excellent alternatives- especially for projects Kickstarter does not allow. And there is even the option to go from scratch, and use no portal at all. Which portal to use is an important decision in any crowdfunding campaign.
So…How do I get started?
You can wing it. Just browse the home page of a few crowdfunding portals, slap together a campaign together real quick, and trust to luck. And it may possibly work.
But more likely, you will end your campaign with the dreaded 25%, 5% or 2% funded. Not only is that a bit humiliating, but it represents a lot of wasted time and effort.
You could spend a lot of time between now and launch studying. Learning about crowdfunding. Browsing internet forums and reading posts by people with dubious experience.
Or you can ask for a bit of help.
It’s ok. No matter how much of a do-it-yourself type you are, sometimes you just need a hand.
What kind of help?
There are a number of seminars out there. Some ridiculously expensive, with a fancy catered lunch and comfy conference room. There are some that are sponsored by specific portals who will steer you their way (and some of those portals are definitely not the ones you should be using.)
We have tried to offer an alternate to these choices (as have some others, by all means we are not the only ones trying to give an honest boost to your crowdfunding dreams.)
As increasing numbers of crowdfunding consultants have appeared, we decided to create Crowdfund-A-Dream as an alternative to some of the snake oil salesman. They make huge promises of social boosts and Twitter hits…just as long as you pay their upfront consulting fee. These people profit by preying on creative people who are new to crowdfunding.
Crowdfund-A-Dream was created in conjunction with Collab Project- Los Angeles. COLLAB is an art salon and creative mixer with a mission to connect and inspire creatives, not take their money. For 9 years it has stuck to that mission, and that same mission has carried over here. Crowdfund-A-Dream is real artists, inventors, creatives, and makers offering real and practical advice, funding road maps, and campaign strategies based on the hundreds of crowdfunding campaigns – successful and failed- that have passed through Collab over the years.
We are also producing a Crowdfund-A-Dream book (both online and print editions) which will be a huge help for all of you hardcore DIYers.