How To Crowdfund A Small Business
Julie Le Carrer is a Belgian artist who practices Intuitive Drawing: a drawing made entirely by following intuition and sensations and usually inspired by a specific intention. Julie wants to launch her dream business, but needs money to finance her participation in a business coaching program.
The six month program with business coach Rachel Archelaus will help her launch a business centered on her creativity. Julie decided to start a crowdfunding campaign to reach out to to her friends and family for financial support. I spoke with Julie about her FundRazr campaign, and how she has included Perks and social sharing to reach her funding goal.
Watch Julie’s video pitch below:
1. Why did you decide to start crowdfunding?
“I really had no idea how I would get the 2000€ and just out of no where I thought of crowdfunding. At first I thought it wouldn’t be possible for such a personal project but I followed my intuition, and found your platform!”
2. How did you initially share your campaign and create a community of support?
“At first I sent it to all closest friends and family by email and Facebook. Then once I had some substantial amount of money raised I started sending it to a wider circle of friends and acquaintances still via email and Facebook. I also created my own Newsletter to send out twice a week.”
3. How have you integrated visual storytelling on your FundRazr campaign?
“Having a beautiful campaign was very important to me. I got some help from a friend to integrate pictures in an artistic visual way, and to create the whole look of the page. It puts images onto the words, it helps understand the content and also keeps people interested. It took me 2 months to put it all together, it was the first time I did something like that!”
4. Can you tell us a bit about your use of Perks in exchange for contributions?
“It has helped immensely, as so far only 5 people out of 42 have contributed without perks. They are a great incentive for people to get involved and also it shows that you don’t take their support lightly. And coming up with ideas for Perks is really fun!”
5. What has been a challenge faced while crowdfunding?
“At first just the fact of exposing myself like this. Then waiting for the contributions, especially the first week when you don’t know if it’s going to take off or not. An exciting challenge has been finding ways to promote the campaign, and I came up with the idea of making little videos every Friday in which I sing or say…the name of all contributors by heart!”
6. What has been the highlight of your crowdfunding experience so far?
“All the positive feedback, and support. Also after the first week I started receiving contributions every day, and that was amazing.”
7. Do you have any advice for others who want to start crowdfunding?
“Be genuine and authentic in your presentation and do put some work into the presentation of your campaign. I do believe you get back as much as the amount of worked you’ve put in.
Another tip which part of it I got from another interview here is to segment your goal. Every week I would say ‘next goal is to reach half of the total’ and then I’d give examples on how to do that: ‘1 person donates 5€ + 3 persons donates 10€, etc…’ until it adds up to the amount. You make it easier for people, because even if they can’t afford to donate much they can see that any amount has a real impact. Stay enthusiastic, enthusiasm is contagious!
I have learned so much through this experience, on so many levels, so even if you don’t raise the total amount it’s really worth it. Also I would like to thank this platform, I found the support to be always present and very helpful and it’s very easy and practical to create and edit the campaign, the perks, to share on social media.”