In my previous blog entry, I addressed a myth that some creators may unconsciously adopt that marketing can somehow magically transform their figurative sow’s ear into a figurative silk purse. It can never actually do that—and, so, WHAT you’re selling will always be more important than HOW you sell it!
In this blog entry, though, I’d like to address a myth of the opposite sort, which is that what you sell is ALL that ever matters. For example, I noticed one person recently assert in an online crowdfunding forum that, with a great product, you don’t need any marketing at all, and that the biggest creators on Kickstarter probably don’t even “spend a dime” on it—or, as some other commenters expressed this same concept by quoting from the movie Field of Dreams (1989), “if you build it, they will come…”
There’s definitely SOME truth to this myth. Sriracha sauce, for example, became commonplace without any significant marketing at all—but it’s arguably not the rule, but the exception, and it achieved its ubiquity only after four decades of free promotion by its fans. Unlike its creator, creators of crowdfunding projects can’t afford to wait patiently for half-a-lifetime while free word-of-mouth marketing alone slowly builds support for their newly-launched projects; instead, they could use a bit of help from paid advertisements or solicited news stories or other such means to hasten that process in a fast-paced marketplace. And this is why, although an unadvertised (but worthy) crowdfunding project will almost certainly attract a few backers in any case, it’s much more common for such projects to remain sadly overlooked, while their creators wait in vain for a deluge of backers wondering… “Where are they?”
It’s also true that, even if marketing is not “needed,” it can still help at least a little, if not a LOT.
As an example of its usefulness, our company started marketing The Side Winder on 2017 Sep 26, and Kicktraq shows (see below) what a HUGE difference we made in its daily pledge rates. This campaign was on track to get funded in any case, but it got funded a LOT more with our help than it would have been funded without us. And those additional pledges earned us a great testimonial (see here) from its creator.
As another example of the potential value of marketing, our advertisers started working with Trakline Express belts on 2016 Feb 02 with similar results—in fact, it was hard for us to find any ads for this project that didn’t work!
It might help to note that KORE Essentials’ CEO had already run three successful Trakline belt campaigns without us before hiring us for this fourth Trakline belt campaign, and that all four of these campaigns had started with roughly the same pattern of an initial surge in pledges that dwindled after a few days—but that our marketing made a HUGE difference in how this fourth campaign progressed. In fact, here’s a comparative chart (see below) that shows daily pledge totals for three of these four initial belt campaigns. As you can see, our ads (combined with our other marketing techniques) not only completely revived the Express belt campaign’s first-day momentum after two weeks of decline, but they also massively scaled-up that momentum to a dramatic last-day finish.
I believe that we’re well-justified in claiming that our well-seasoned expert marketing multiplied the Express belt’s funding about fivefold over what it would have totaled otherwise. Our results aren’t always this dramatic, but they can be so for the right projects.
Most of the biggest crowdfunding campaigners on Kickstarter and/or Indiegogo realize this power inherent in marketing and, as such, want its help to transform their spare profit margins into valuable additional backers. And, sometimes, that’s involved hiring us.
This is what Hiral Sanghavi of BAUBAX did for his first travel jackets project in 2015; after he’d already spent hundreds-of-thousands of dollars on marketing this project in-house, he spent even more money outsourcing this role to us (starting in mid-August) because we proved that we could attract pledgers to his project better than he could. In fact, as this Kicktraq chart suggests (see below), and as Hiral has testified (see our reviews website), we cost-effectively helped this campaign to raise an additional $4.5 million before it ended!
Not all huge campaigns have responded that well to our marketing, but some have. In fact, we’ve now enjoyed serving over 10% of Kickstarter’s 250+ campaigns that ever amassed over $1,000,000. Most of these seven-figure campaigns would have probably never crossed their million-dollar mark without engaging in at least some marketing, and we’re grateful that they chose to hire ours—even though we didn’t always promote their campaigns exclusively, but sometimes conducted our marketing in addition to their marketing and/or in combination with supplemental marketing from other agencies. In any case, here’s a roster of the 32 projects that we helped that earned membership in our unofficial “Million Dollar Club” by the end of 2017, each of which we testify (with documentary proof) spent far more than a dime to market their respective projects…
By the way, if you'd like to learn more about our past marketing successes, then please visit our website’s “Get More Pledges” page, which includes a rather exhaustive (and up-to-date) list of our mutually-profitable past partnerships.
But effective marketing does more than help already-successful campaigns to become even more successful—in fact, there are rare campaigns for which marketing can make all the difference between getting funded and not.
One example of this power is SpineGym, which was struggling to reach its $50,000 goal until we at Funded Today began advertising it on 2016 Apr 20. Our advertisements, along with our cross-promotions and our affiliate marketing and our public relations, helped SpineGym to not only surpass its goal but to even raise over nine times that goal. Here’s its funding-progress chart (see below), courtesy of Kicktraq. This chart’s curvature depicts our dramatic results that earned us a rave review (see here) from its creator.
Another example of this power is Siggie Lodoen sports brassieres, which might have forever languished well below its goal, except that our Funded Today team started advertising it on 2017 Dec 08. Our ads (enhanced with our other marketing techniques) helped Siggie Lodoen to succeed abundantly, raising more than twice as much money as it needed for mass-production. Here’s its funding-progress chart (see below) from Kicktraq, as well, which shows the statistics that helped our work to earn some grateful praise (see here) from its creator.
Both SpineGym and Siggie Lodoen arguably offered sufficiently-good products and created sufficiently-good presentations, but each would have still failed without effective marketing.
Marketing definitely can’t help every failing campaign, though, such as ZLATE stands for Apple watches, as shown in this Kicktraq chart (see below). We started advertising these stands from the beginning, guided (like with so many other projects) by what their creator told us, by our extensive experience, by careful observation, and by persistent trial-and-error—but, regardless of what we tried, not even a single page-visitor ever pledged to this project!
It happens sometimes. Whenever we’re hired to market a project, we can’t magically transform what it’s offering into something else—we can only identify its most likely buyers and then effectively entice them to come visit its campaign page and, hopefully, be persuaded by that page to pledge. If that page doesn’t persuade its viewers that the project in question is worth their pledges, though, whether due to its presentation or due to its product-and-price itself, then there’s not much that we can do about it.
So, I still readily agree that offering a dazzling product (at a decent price) is the greatest key to any project’s success, partly because such products (like the aforementioned Sriracha sauce) will virtually sell themselves if they can only attract enough attention from the right people. And, for such worthy projects, an effective presentation combined with effective promotion will merely help them to more-fully (and more-quickly) achieve their innate potential for success, sometimes turning four-figure campaigns into five-figure ones, five-figure ones into six-figure ones, six-figure ones into seven-figure ones, et cetera—or, in other words, transforming “shooting stars” into “supernovas,” as we visualized in our Crowdfunding Success Matrix.
But, conversely, no amount of skilled marketing and/or media-creation (including both video-production and page-design) can mystically transmogrify a figurative Edsel into a figurative Mustang. Ultimately, as I’ve said before, products are what they are while shoppers are who they are, and salespeople can’t change reality—they can only present that reality in the best light possible.
BUT, for the right products, that light can sometimes make all the difference!
We’d love to see what our light can do for YOUR brilliant ideas. So, if you’re a creator and/or entrepreneur who is currently running (or is preparing to run) a crowdfunding project on either Kickstarter or Indiegogo, then please apply for our services right away.