Step 4: Promo
Now, you need to get the word out there!
You’re prepared. You’ve got a plan. You’ve got your pitch. Your campaign is live. Now it’s time to share it with your crowd and the rest of the world. Hopefully you’ve already done a bit of promo and created a bit of a buzz as part of your communications plan. Here are some tips on how to connect to your crowd and find investors.
Your First 50 are your champions! Get them ready to pledge in the first few hours the campaign is live. Ask them to share the fact they’ve pledged with their networks. Get them to write a blog post for you about why they pledged and what they hope for your company. Get them working for you. Because they want to own a piece of you they’ll want to see you succeed.
Because campaigns are internet-based it’s easy to share them online. Tap into your social media presence and promote the PledgeMe page via your Facebook, Twitter, and other platforms. Get your First 50 to do this too, and RT and share your messages and posts.
Make sure that you include this note in every social media share: You should consider the offer document and the general risk warning before investing.
Find other champions who might not be investing but who support your business to share the campaign through their social media.
Start a hashtag even!
Facebook advertising is another effective medium you may consider using. For more on that check out Facebook’s info on ads.
Caution though: people do get fatigued if you’re blasting the same messages over and over and over again. Do social media blasts sparingly, figure out interesting and new content to share, and try and provide images or video to go along with them.
If you need help with social media, PledgeMe can help you find someone who is gifted in such dark arts.
Bringing your online campaign into the real world can help raise awareness that you’re looking for investors.
Your first event can be as small as your team, some drinks, and your laptops. Once you’re live you can hit go on your launch comms plan together, and celebrate the ticker ticking up.
Having an event also gives you an excuse to hold a party or a media stand up and bring your crowd in and have a fun time.
Your imagination is the limit here. We've heard talk of pub crawls, public talks, cottage meetings, stunts and much more.
Organise whatever you feel comfortable with and invite your crowd and others along. At the very least you get an opportunity to talk about your product/service to a bunch of people, who knows they might even all invest. Remember to invite us!
Also, you don’t need to organise everything. Is there anyone in your network organising an event that would let you come and speak? Think Pecha Kucha nights, or Coffee and Jam sessions, or even talks at conferences.
In Australia you need to be careful of the hawking provisions (RG38): you are not allowed to call people or set up meetings purely to pitch your campaign unsolicited.
Mainstream media are another go-to when it comes to promoting your equity campaign. The business sections of major dailies are always looking to profile companies who are doing something cool.
Other more specialist media are often interested in what is happening with equity crowdfunding too. Local and community papers are also a good bet. They're always looking for content and stories around local businesses creating jobs and doing good things in their communities.
Find out who the journalists you want to talk to are and flick them a copy of your press release (the one that you said you'd do in your comms plan) with a note saying that you’d like to talk to them about what your company is doing.
If you work in a specialist sector, are there any magazines or websites which write about your niche? Get in touch with them to see if they're willing to publish something.
PledgeMe has some pretty big networks with journalists and media outlets. If you're struggling with finding people to talk to then we may be able to help.
Go to where your crowd hangs out
If you're a bar, and your crowd is your regulars on a Friday night, you've got an easy job. But, even when it’s not that clear cut there are lots of ways you can figure out where your crowd spends its time, whether that is a physical place or an online space.
You may consider going along to events other people have organised and use them as a networking opportunity, or you may know that heaps of your fans are members of a particular Facebook group where you could post a message about the campaign.
The point is to ensure maximum opportunity for the people you think will be most likely to invest to hear about your campaign. But don't spam them!
How PledgeMe can help
PledgeMe can help with advice about how best to do your social media, events, and figuring out where your crowd hangs out. We can also rattle the cage of some journalists we think might be interested in your campaign. Our newsletter and social media will also be pumping out some alerts about your campaign.
Promo is key. We'll push you to carry out your plans and do fun and interesting things to raise awareness about your campaign.