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Crowdfunding Training Material for Small and Medium Sized Enterprises - (abridged version)

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Within the framework of the Crowd-Fund-Port project, ikosom - one of the Project Partners - created a comprehensive training material for small and medium sized enterprises to improve their access to capital through online platforms.

In seven modules it explains “Crowdfunding” and how to prepare a successful Crowdfunding-campaign. It is meant to be used by our Project Partners, who are hosting local/regional trainings for SMEs to learn about Crowdfunding, successful campaigns, best practices in building a community and choosing the right Crowdfunding platform.

Here you find an abridged version of Module 07 - Crowdfunding exercises. Especially if you are working as a Crowdfunding Consultant in Central Europe, you can use this material in your own trainings.

To get full access to the seven modules, please visit https://www.CrowdFundPort.eu.

Crowd-Fund-Port is a project funded by the Innovation and Knowledge Priority of the Interreg Central Europe Programme. The aim of the project is to support SMEs in Central Europe in accessing capital and strengthen Crowdfunding Ecosystems in Austria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Poland, Slovakia and Slovenia.

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Crowdfunding Training Material for Small and Medium Sized Enterprises - (abridged version)

  1. 1. Crowd-Fund-Port - www.crowdfundport.eu CrowdCreator - www.crowdcreator.eu Crowdfunding Training Material for Small and Medium Sized Enterprises
  2. 2. About the project “Crowd-Fund-Port” Crowd-Fund-Port is a project funded by the Innovation and Knowledge Priority of the Interreg Central Europe Programme. The aim of the project is to support SMEs in Central Europe in accessing capital and strengthen Crowdfunding Ecosystems in Austria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Poland, Slovakia and Slovenia. 2
  3. 3. Target groups ● SMEs ○ Without previous Crowdfunding experience ○ With previous Crowdfunding experience ● Consultants ● Incubators and Public Institutions supporting SMEs 3
  4. 4. Outline of the Material ● Module 1: Crowdfunding basics ● Module 2: Pre-Campaigning ● Module 3: Campaigning ● Module 4: Post-Campaigning ● Module 5: Tools for Crowdfunding ● Module 6: Best Practices ● Module 7: Exercises and resources 4
  5. 5. Crowdfunding-Basics Module 1
  6. 6. Crowdfunding is more than just finance! 6 Crowdfunding can be used for marketing, market research, community outreach and press activities.
  7. 7. ● What is Crowdfunding?: We explain the overall concept of Crowdfunding by showing different definitions and discussion them. ● Case study: We tell the best practice story of a local SME that used Crowdfunding to start or grow its business, which we identified in our research. ● Development of Crowdfunding: We tell the participants that Crowdfunding is not a new concept and show the development from the first online-platforms up to now, explain the connection with “Crowdsourcing” and how Crowdfunding is used in Europe. ● Terminology and different types of Crowdfunding: We explain the differences between the four Crowdfunding-models (donation-based, reward-based, lending-based and equity-based) and other Crowdfunding-related terms. Also we talk about project- and platform-terminologies. 7 Table of contents
  8. 8. ● The Crowdfunding Framework: We mention the different parts of the Crowdfunding Campaign (pre-campaigning, campaigning, post-campaigning) and that each campaign stage has several sub stages, which also will be covered in details in the following modules. ● Use of Crowdfunding: We show different approaches of Crowdfunding goals and present the added values, which come with every Crowdfunding-campaign (e.g. product feedback, proof of concept, community building etc.). Also we share some basic information about branch specific use of Crowdfunding and also on taxes and how consutlants can support project-owners in the whole process. 8 Table of contents
  9. 9. Crowdfunding is a form of online finance for innovative companies, projects and people. Crowdfunding comes in many different formats and purposes - but the overall similarity is the process of collaborative funding often on Crowdfunding platforms, which bring together the supporters with the recipients of funds. 9Source: CC-BY-NC-SA Karsten Wenzlaff, Wolfgang Gumpelmaier-Mach, crowdfundport.eu example slide What is Crowdfunding?
  10. 10. History of Crowdfunding Through the Internet this alternative form of finance became an open and transparent financing tool. 10Source: CC-BY-NC-SA Karsten Wenzlaff, Wolfgang Gumpelmaier-Mach, crowdfundport.eu example slide
  11. 11. At the end of this module, you should be able to... ● ...understand the different types of Crowdfunding ● ...understand that Crowdfunding has more value than just access to capital ● ...estimate if your company is ready for Crowdfunding 11 Transition to the next module
  12. 12. Crowdfunding: Pre-campaigning Module 2
  13. 13. What is meant by pre-campaigning? 13 Everything that can be done in advance BEFORE launching a Crowdfunding-project on a platform is part of the pre-campaigning phase.
  14. 14. ● Organise your Crowdfunding campaign: On the first slides of this Module, we give an overview on the different phases of the Crowdfunding process: the pre-campaigning phase, the campaigning-phase itself and the post-campaigning-phase. ● Pre-campaigning: On the following slides, we focus on the pre-campaigning-phase. We've split this phase up into three parts, illustrating each part with a variety of best practice examples and supportive tips: ○ Identify!: This includes conceptual and organisational tasks, like defining your goal, your budget and team, but also explore Crowdfunding in general and learn about how the tools and the platforms work and finally choose one platform that fits your purpose. 14 Table of contents
  15. 15. ○ Prepare!: The pre-campaign phase also includes preparing a communication plan and start building a crowd. ○ Build!: Last but not least, it is about building your project page on the chosen platform, add a video, text and - if reward based - your rewards or - if equity based - your business plan. 15 Table of contents
  16. 16. Organise your Crowdfunding campaign A successful Crowdfunding campaign needs more than just publishing your project on a Crowdfunding platform. Source: own Identify! ● Define your goal ● Define your budget ● Define your milestones ● Define your brand ● Write a business plan* ● Start a company* ● Build your team ● Explore Crowdfunding ● Choose the model ● Choose the platform ● Imagine different scenarios Prepare! ● Set up project & communication plan ● Assign tasks to team ● Start a pre-launch page ● Produce campaign video ● Produce graphics/pics ● Write campaign texts ● Write FAQs ● Clarify legal issues Build! ● Open account & add profile ● Set up payment ● Add campaign title ● Add thumbnail & short text ● Add description texts ● Add graphics & pictures ● Add rewards ● Add your team ● Upload campaign video ● Upload businessplan* ● Test your campaign & adjust it ● Publish your campaign *mandatory on equity- and lending-based CFPs 16 example slide
  17. 17. Identify! Choose the Crowdfunding platform There are many variables to consider when choosing the Crowdfunding platform that fits your purpose. Try to answer most of these questions to find the best CFP for your project. 17Source: CC-BY-NC-SA Karsten Wenzlaff, Wolfgang Gumpelmaier-Mach, crowdfundport.eu example slide
  18. 18. At the end of this module, you should be able to... ● ...understand the different steps necessary to prepare a campaign ● ...select a platform which is suitable for you. ● ...build up the internal structures for your team. 18 Transition to the next module
  19. 19. Crowdfunding: campaigning Module 3
  20. 20. What is meant by campaigning? 20 Once you launched your campaign it is all about raising awareness, interacting with your community and keeping everyone informed.
  21. 21. ● Run your Crowdfunding campaign: The purpose of this Module is to guide you through the steps of campaigning. We've split this phase up into three parts, illustrating each part with a variety of best practice examples and supportive tips. The module has the following sub-chapters: ○ Generate!: In the first few hours and days, you need to generate some buzz by telling as many people as possible about your project. Send out emails, publish your prepared press release, inform friends through direct messages and update your community in any given way. This chapter is all about raising the awareness of your community! 21 Table of contents
  22. 22. ○ Engage!: After generating some buzz, it is all about engaging with the Crowd. Try to answer their questions via email, but also in the FAQ-section on your project-page. Also ask for feedback and involve the Crowd and last but not least, communicate with your followers on your established channels. This chapter is all about interacting with your community! ○ Update!: During the campaign it is crucial to also keep your community in the loop, not only supporters, but also influencers and of course your family & friends. Update your project-page, post published interviews, send a follow-up newsletter and remind people of your campaign. This chapter is all about keeping your community informed! 22 Table of contents
  23. 23. Run your Crowdfunding campaign After publishing your campaign there’s a lot of work to do, to create buzz and keep your project going. Generate! ● Send personal (e)mails ● Publish press release ● Send direct messages ● Update your community ● Advertise in Social Media ● Use buzz-creation tools ● Organise a kickoff event Engage! ● Answer emails & FAQs ● Plan a live Q&A session ● Start a referral contest ● Visit offline events ● Ask for feedback ● Socialize on established channels ● BEWARE: the valley of tears Update! ● Inform about project status ● Post interviews & articles ● Send out email-newsletter ● Send reminder to close contacts ● Use news/update-area on CFP ● Communicate new rewards & stretch goals ● Present testimonials 23 example slide
  24. 24. Engage! The valley of tears Although you communicate about your project all the time, be prepared that there will be some days without any interaction. 24Source: CC-BY-NC-SA Karsten Wenzlaff, Wolfgang Gumpelmaier-Mach, crowdfundport.eu example slide
  25. 25. At the end of this module, you should be able to... ● ...run a campaign ● ...have ideas about online and offline events during the campaign ● ... have ideas on how to overcome obstacles in your campaign. 25 Transition to the next module
  26. 26. Crowdfunding: post-campaigning Module 4
  27. 27. What is meant by post-campaigning? 27 Once you finished your campaign, it is all about thanking your community, fulfilling your promises and further growing your business.
  28. 28. ● Run your Crowdfunding campaign: In previous Modules, we discussed the preparation and management of the campaign. The following Module 4 includes all activities which are done after the end of the campaign, so either when the funding goal is achieved or the the funding time has ended. Again, we've split this phase up into three parts, illustrating each part with a variety of best practice examples and supportive tips. The module has the following sub-chapters: ○ Thank!: After a successfully finished Crowdfunding campaign, project owners often focus on their businesses. But do not forget your Crowd, as your supporters often are also your first customers and influencers, who recommend your product or your brand. This chapter is all about thanking everyone for joining the campaign! 28 Table of contents
  29. 29. ○ Fulfill!: After you finished your campaign the “real” work starts/continues and you have to make sure to start with producing your product properly and fulfill your promises (e.g. rewards). This chapter is all about delivering on the promises of your campaign. ○ Grow!: Last but not least, sharing insights and regularly communicate with your communication is important. This chapter is all about involving your supporters to further growing your business and to preparing the next steps of development. 29 Table of contents
  30. 30. Finish your Crowdfunding campaign After a successfully finished Crowdfunding campaign, founders often focus on their main businesses. Do not forget your Crowd! Source: own Thank! ● Communicate your success ● Special thank your supporters ● Update your campaign-page ● Follow-up journalists and influencers ● Party with your team Fulfill! ● Send out backer-surveys ● Produce your product ● Invite supporter to events ● Prepare bills for everyone ● Check your taxes/account ● Reward supporters as promised ● Write quarterly reports* ● Communicate milestones Grow! ● Redirect to your online shop ● Document learnings from your campaign ● Identify “true” believers amongst your supporters ● Work with your success ● Prepare another campaign ● Establish a Crowd-business ● Turn Crowdfunding into eCommerce 30 *mandatory on equity- and lending-based CFPs example slide
  31. 31. Thank! Special thank your supporters Include personalized thank you notes in Facebook, where you can tag the supporters. Source: Fairytale Fashion on Facebook, https://www.facebook.com/FAIRytaleFairFashion/posts/889997341046771; Brlog on Facebook, https://www.facebook.com/BRLOGpivovara/photos/a.595212653952922.1073741830.586559691484885/732922000181986/?type=3; Late Blossom Blues (Leo “Bud” Welch Documentary) on Facebook, https://www.facebook.com/LeoWelchMovie/photos/a.720984224622804.1073741828.720030751384818/756348724419687/?type=1; 31 example slide
  32. 32. At the end of this module, you should be able to... ● ...plan the activities after a successful Crowdfunding campaign ● ...understand the steps that are necessary to create several campaigns or use Crowdfunding as an ongoing source of finance. 32 Transition to the next module
  33. 33. Crowdfunding-Tools & Resources Module 5
  34. 34. What can I do to promote my project? 34 There are many helpful resources and tools out there, which you can use to improve your campaign.
  35. 35. ● Tools, tools, tools … and resources! ○ Online Resources: We collected websites and articles that are very helpful for getting a better understanding of how Crowdfunding works. ○ Communication-tools: We listed some helpful tools for organizing the communication process with supporters and your team. ○ Pre-Launch-tools: We compiled a list of helpful tools for building a community of supporters. ○ Press & promotion-tools: We collected helpful tools to generate media awareness. ○ Fulfillment-tools & investor relations: We also found some helpful tools to manage the process of delivering the rewards and managing the relations with your investors. 35 Table of contents
  36. 36. Pre-Launch: Landing-Pages Source: b-cared on Launchrock, http://b-cared.launchrock.com/ You can also use Launchrock for building your pre-launch pages, including your own pictures, logos and texts. 36 example slide
  37. 37. Pre-Launch: Data driven advertising Some services like tross.co advertise on Facebook or Instagram even before a campaign launches to arouse curiosity and even pre-sell products by collecting purchasing-commitments of the users. Source: Advertisment of “Must-see Kickstarter-projects” on Instagram, delivered by Tross.co 37 example slide
  38. 38. At the end of this module, you should be able to... ● ...have knowledge about the various tools which can help your campaign. ● ...understand the pros and cons of using each tool. 38 Transition to the next module
  39. 39. Crowdfunding Best Practices Module 6
  40. 40. ● Best practices in Crowdfunding: This module highlights some of the best practice campaigns from the CrowdFundPort partner countries in Central Europe with a focus on Croatia, Czech Republic, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Poland, Slovakia, Slovenia. ○ Croatia: Brlog - a cooperative brewery from the Croatian coast ○ Slovakia: The Moon Inside You ○ Hungary: SBrick Smart and SBrick Plus ○ Poland: Swimmo Smart Swim Watch ○ Slovenia: Red Pitaya Open Instruments for everyone 40 Table of contents
  41. 41. ○ Czech Republic: Skinners - the pocket shoes ○ Germany: detektor.fm startet eine Vormittagssendung ○ Austria: Neovoltaic - die neue Kraft ○ Italy: Synbiotec 41 Table of contents
  42. 42. Croatia 42 example slide
  43. 43. What is Crowdfunding? Brlog - a cooperative brewery from the Croatian coast - used Crowdfunding to finance brewery equipment. Source: Brlog on Indiegogo, https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/brlog-a-cooperative-brewery-on-the-croatian-coast--2/x/10470871#/ 43 example slide
  44. 44. Crowdfunding Exercises Module 7
  45. 45. ● Crowdfunding exercises: The following Module contains exercises that can be used for workshops and trainings during Crowdfunding campaigns. They can be applied in various modules, since they overlap thematically. You can adapt and change these exercises - let us know how your experience is with these exercises. ○ Exercises for Module 1 ○ Exercises for Module 2 ○ Exercises for Module 3 ○ Exercises for Module 4 ○ Crowdfunding Checklist 45 Table of contents
  46. 46. Exercises for Module 2 46 example slide
  47. 47. Source: Douw & Koren, http://www.douwenkoren.nl/crowdfunding-canvas-en-plan-de-campagne 47 example slide Explore the Crowdfunding Canvas!
  48. 48. What happens if… ... the project reaches its funding goal before the end of the funding time? ... the project receives much more than the required funding goal? ... the project receives significantly less than the required funding goal? 48 example slide Three Scenarios

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