Crowd funding, it’s brilliant but it’s no easy option.
Back in August I wrote a piece for Lancaster Guardian about Lancaster’s Annie Neat using Kickstarter to get her show, The Jungle Referendum, to the Edinburgh Festival. She and her fellow performers, Three Mugs of Tea, managed to raise £1000 via crowd-funding and then went on to successfully perform their show, with lots of media attention.
Just around that time I’d been asked to offer a package of support for people wanting to use crowd-funding. I have personally backed 4 successful projects this way and really like it, but I thought I had better get the feel of it for myself.
During the summer I wrote the first draft of my book on ethical sales skills, The Heart of Sales, which has been a plan of mine for over a year now, and a much needed resource for small businesses and the not- for- profit sector.
As a published author I already know that writing and producing a book is totally a labour of love. It’s very time consuming and not really financially rewarding, so I decided that I would go down the route of crowd-funding for this project, to raise the resources to get it beautifully formatted and produced for publication.
I tell you I am glad I did that interview with Annie, because it prepared me for what was to come.
It sounds like a nice easy option doesn’t it, asking others for money to make your project happen? And indeed when people do pledge to back you it really is a great feeling. But this is no easy option.
It’s very challenging and exposing. You are asking people to trust you and hand over their hard earned money for your project.
It’s also very hard work. You can’t just set up a crowd-funding account and sit back and watch the money come rolling in. You have to let people know about it, raise the profile and ask and ask and ask. My social media skills have really come in handy here.
If you’re no good at asking for help this will either cure you or kill you!
I’ve been very lucky, friends and customers alike have pledged to back me, or offer help with proof reading and graphics, and the lovely Jackie Speight got behind me and has tweeted it every day, as well as becoming a backer.
With 13 days to go I have got 18 pledges and I’m nearly half way there. It’s very exciting and I’ve learnt loads. I’m also very touched by the kindness of people who have donated so far. Their support has made me determined to get this done.
If you would be interested in backing me PLEASE click here
What about you? I’d like to hear your experience of crowd-funding? So please leave me a comment below.
If you are thinking about using crowd- funding and would like me to help, or you would like me to come and talk to your organisation about it, drop me an email at email@example.com