Kody Wirth is a content writer and SEO specialist for Palo Alto Software—the creator's of Bplans and LivePlan. He has 3+ years experience covering small business topics and runs a part-time content writing service in his spare time.
3 min. read
Updated January 4, 2024
Crowdfunding may seem like a modern funding method, but it’s actually been around as far back as the 1700s. However, the diverse options and viability of crowdfunding didn’t take hold until the introduction and explosive growth of the internet.
Now, it presents a potent alternative to traditional business financing allowing you to raise funds while validating your business idea in real time.
Crowdfunding offers several dynamic platforms to engage a crowd of potential backers, transforming them into your product’s first customers, your most vocal supporters, and sometimes even shareholders.
This guide will help you navigate the crowdfunding landscape, understand how to run a successful campaign, and explore the specifics of crowdfunding platforms. Let’s get started.
Before you dive into raising money through crowdfunding, there are a few things you should consider.
Crowdfunding may seem fairly straightforward. However, it’s worth reviewing the setup process, how to operate a campaign, and what happens if you don’t reach your funding goal.
Crowdfunding can be a great alternative method for raising funds. However, it’s not always the best option for every business and there are good reasons not to pursue it.
Traditional crowdfunding is considered to be a donation. But another option, known as equity-based crowdfunding, allows you to issue small shares of ownership in exchange for capital. Is this a better fit?
Campaigns with videos attached to them are far more likely to succeed over those that just describe the product, service, or project with text. You just need to be sure your video connects with potential donors.
When you think of crowdfunding websites, Kickstarter is likely the first thing that comes to mind. While it wasn’t the first, its launch alongside IndieGoGo in the late 2000s signaled the emergence of crowdfunding as a major funding source.
Here are some of our best resources to help you succeed on the platform.
Launching a successful Kickstarter campaign is anything but easy. But if you understand the platform, have a plan going in, and are willing to take the time to do it right—it can be possible.
What makes some Kickstarter campaigns so successful? Aside from understanding the platform it comes down to six specific traits.
Patreon is a unique platform in the crowdfunding landscape. While many others focus on funding a singular project, Patreon allows for ongoing funding. If you’re a content creator, artist, or smaller media company this can be a great option.
What does it take to maintain a Patreon profile that consistently satisfies your patrons and helps grow your business? Transparency, communication, and creativity—which the platform mostly sets you up to do.
Resources to help you raise capital through crowdfunding sites.
Free one-page business plan template
Make your crowdfunding campaign a success by mapping out your business idea, outlining marketing strategies, and nailing down how much funding you need with this simple business plan format.