Crowdfunding has enormous potential to help you get your idea off the ground, but you may be wondering where to start. There are so many sites out there dedicated to funding everything from movies to smartphones. How does your business idea fit in? Keep in mind that there are pros and cons to each crowdfunding platform, so before you settle on the one that could launch your career, make sure it’s in line with the vision you have for your company. Once it’s out there it can take on a life of its own, so it’s a good idea to know what you’re getting into from the get-go.
Why Kickstarter – and Why Not?
With a monthly user base of five and a half million, Kickstarter is by far the most popular crowdfunding platform. This has some obvious advantages: you can get your idea out to the largest possible audience, making the likelihood of acquiring funding from strangers much higher. That said, there’s a flip side to the giant crowd approach. With so much to browse through, people tend to gravitate towards flashy, high-profile projects, usually in popular categories like the arts and high tech. But those users who are looking to shepherd a more unconventional or less catchy idea towards fruition are less likely to find themselves garnering support. If your idea doesn’t sound as good as it really is, you might not be able to effectively court the funding of the masses – and Kickstarter might not be for you.
Why RocketHub – and Why Not?
Though much smaller than Kickstarter’s user base, RocketHub gives its projects a lot more personal attention. You can think of it as a more specialized platform for users who are looking to manage their funding more tightly. In fact, with lower engagement from strangers, RocketHub may be more appropriate for organizing a fund through people you already know – making it a platform more integrated with genuinely social media. If you have a more intimate project you want to work on with collaborators you know and trust, RocketHub may be a better bet.
Why Indiegogo – and Why Not?
You can think of Indiegogo as a middle ground between the anyone-and-everyone approach of Kickstarter and the more focused strategy of RocketHub. Their user base is quite large – just shy of a million a month – but that’s still much smaller than Kickstarter. That said, their projects are much more wide-ranging, with many more categories of ideas and a stronger emphasis on diversity. Plus, unlike Kickstarter, you can arrange a flexible funding plan that doesn’t require you to meet your goal in order to hold on to the money you raise. In that eventuality, you can still move forward with your project, but along different lines – making sure you alter the rewards program for your backers accordingly. It’s a good option if you’re looking to explore an idea that’s a little off-the-wall.
Some other things to keep in mind, smaller goals are more achievable and the average successful crowdfunding campaign is around $7,000. Additionally, according to Fundable, campaigns that can gain 30% of their goal within the first week are more likely to succeed. If you’re still not sure which crowdfunding site to use, check out this nifty infographic to guide you!
‘Kickstarter Platform Details’
‘RocketHub Platform Details’
‘Indiegogo Platform Details’
‘Niche crowdfunding sites can outperform Kickstarter’