For Joanna Griffiths, launching a crowdfunding campaign was about more than raising capital for her startup. Griffiths turned to Indiegogo in 2013 to test the market for Knix Wear, a line of women’s underwear made from moisture-wicking, odor-absorbent fabrics. “It was the last test in a series of tests I conducted before launching the business,” explains the Toronto-based entrepreneur.
Even though Knix Wear garnered support from 518 backers who pledged more than $50,000 for the 2013 campaign–on a goal of less than $40,000–crowdfunding was a challenge. “I thought if I had a great idea and a strong platform, I would sell thousands of units,” Griffiths recalls. “But getting every single new backer was a struggle.”
As crowdfunding gains popularity as a financing model–Kickstarter, for example, has seen more than $1 billion pledged since its 2009 launch, and more than 19,000 successful campaigns last year alone–a growing number of startups are clamoring for support from backers, making it that much harder for ‘treps to stand out.
Before you sign on with one of the 200-plus U.S. crowdfunding platforms, master these tricks for launching a successful campaign.