Who is your crowd and how can you entice them to support your crowdfunding campaign

Social media has enabled crowdfunding campaigns to reach friends, family and known supporters across time and space

But what about the crowd you don’t know, who might donate - if they only knew you were there?

Can we learn from research into social network habits and social networkers?

  social network  In most online communities 1% actively contribute, 9% do so intermittently and 90% are named “lurkers” - who read but do not engage or contribute.

Crowdfunding can only reach a tipping point to be being part of our social, community and financial landscape if campaigns reach beyond their immediate social networks.

The 1% active contributors also frequently access mobile social media which increases interaction; they generate, not just consume, content; they follow more organisations or companies and use less traditional media (TV, newspapers). (The social habit - frequent social networker) .

Use of social media sites is growing in all age bands - the 2010 social network report shows that in 30 days 88% of 18-34 years olds visited a social network, with 69% of 35-49 years olds and 41% of 50+.

tipWhat campaigns need to do:  use as many social media platforms as possible for their campaigns - making it easy to access, support and donate; use blogs as news media; ask supporters to write for you; get “liked” by your supporters or get a link from sites popular to your social networkers.

Recent research has suggested ways of categorising social networkers

  • Tourists: drop by, have superficial interest, few social ties
  • Minglers: strong social ties, less interest in the subject
  • Devotees: interested in the subject but few social ties
  • Insiders: strong interest in the subject with many social ties

So your landing page or website might have many hits - but fewer donations - because 90% will be tourists or lurkers - with little interest and no social connections to your site.

tip What campaigners need to do:  link devotees (those with an interest in the subject) to minglers (the socialisers) to make your campaign something they want to connect with.

Crowdfunding can create a relationship that makes them feel they are playing a valued and powerful role in making new ideas happen. 

social media sites 2010 social network report gives the main reasons (above) why people use social networking sites - that is to connect with people (friends, family and reconnecting). Fun is the second highest . Those that might seem more related to crowdfunding - political (or issue) interest, meeting like-minded people and gathering information are lower, much lower.

tipCampaigners need to - ensure they reach people through their friends, family and wider social networks. Give permission for those with wide connections to post updates, make videos for you - as well as simple retweeting.

Remember Fenton?

Make your landing page fun - however serious the cause

Join me on an introduction to crowdfunding workshop

Middlesbrough 14 June  10.00 15.30

Workshop in partnership with Funding Information North East and Middlesbrough Voluntary Development Agency

Central Middlesbrough venue

Rochdale 26 June 09.30-13.00

Workshop in partnership with CVS Rochdale

Venue: CVS Rochdale, Partnership House, Sparrow Hill, Rochdale OL16 1QT

Crewe 3 July  10.00 - 15.30

Workshop in partnership with CVS Cheshire East

Venue:The Exercise Studio, Belong, Brookhouse Drive, Crewe

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