PieShell is a crowdfunding platform for food and beverage entrepreneurs. Here are their top five tips for crowdfunding success!
1. Prepare, prepare, and prepare some more. Like making a good meal, preparation is 90% of the battle when it comes to crowdfunding. A major task is to prepare for the crowd itself. Building a following that you stay in touch with, whether it’s through an e-newsletter or social media, is crucial. Another big item to prepare ahead of your launch is a marketing plan that includes who you’re trying to reach and how you plan to reach them. Our first round of PieShellers told us that if they could give one piece of advice, it would be to get organized ahead of time.
2. Crowdfunding is an emotional roller coaster. Just like any entrepreneurial endeavor, crowdfunding is full of ups and downs. It’s a good thing to be aware of going in. One day contributions may flood in, and the next day may be slow. That’s totally normal. The key to coming out on top is to pay close attention to what works with your audience, and to remain flexible.
3. It might take money to make money. Whether it’s time, money, or both, consider how much you can afford to spend, and factor that into your ask. In this case, you may decide that a higher ask is needed to cover the amount you’ll have to spend to service your raise (gifts, packaging, postage, etc.). Alternatively, setting a lower goal might make more sense if you plan to get scrappy and do it all yourself. PieShell’s stepping-stones approach is designed to make people think carefully about their ask.
4. Get ready to work! Anyone who has tried their hand at crowdfunding will tell you that it can feel like a full-time job. From blogging, sending personalized emails, rallying your fans on social media, making lots of phone calls, to thanking each and every contributor, crowdfunding is energy intensive.
5. It's not always about the rewards. Here at PieShell, we think of crowdfunding as being more closely related to charitable giving than anything else. A large percentage of people who contribute to crowdfunding projects do so not for the rewards, but instead for the gratification that comes from helping someone else fulfill his or her dream. In fact, we have found that 40% of PieShell contributors waive the gifts they’re entitled to! Understanding what motivates people to contribute is crucial to developing the right messaging.
PieShell’s goal is to embolden and empower food and beverage entrepreneurs and enthusiasts to bring new ideas to life and take their businesses to the next level. You can get more great crowdfunding tips on their blog, and check out their latest projects at PieShell.com!