Here are the experts’ tips for crowdfunding wisely:

1. Tell your story well. You need to pour out your heart to your audience and backers. Talk about your enterprise truthfully and passionately, so that you can connect emotionally with your backers (or people who would donate to your cause). You need to bring authenticity and transparency into whatever campaign you are creating. Tell a story about your product or service that is very powerful. But very importantly, be your true self. Do not present a false story or attempt to blackmail your backers emotionally. WE WILL HAPPILY BLACKLIST YOU IMMEDIATELY WE DISCOVER SUCH.

2. Set a realistic crowdfunding goal and timetable. Your business plan and the funding you require must be well articulated before you attempt to create a crowdfunding campaign. We may ask to review this before we approve your campaign on the fundanenterprise.org platform. Note that you will NOT only need money for start-up, but you will also need money to support your business for the first 6 months to 1 year. When setting the funding goal on fundanenterprise.org, take this into consideration and also give your target funding some extra cushion – up to 10% or 20% above the total funding you actually need, which is the fee that the foundation (MSME Crowd Funding foundation) may charge you, to cover costs such as maintaining the website, transaction fees to payment gateway providers for processing donations and payments to you, continuous financial training and compulsory handholding (monitoring, for existing businesses) support for your business for one year from the date we pay out your funds to you.

When setting the crowdfunding timeline for your enterprise campaign on our website, a one-month period is generally the best. The shorter the timeline, with more aggressive promotions and campaigns from you, the better.

3. Promise to give out your products or services (as rewards to your backers). This is very crucial, as some prospective donors may not like to give out money without getting anything at all in return. There are different types of crowdfunding:

  • Equity based crowdfunding- You give some of your business equity or shares in return for the funds you are getting from backers.
  • Debt crowdfunding – You pay back the funds plus interest.
  • Reward based crowdfunding – You give out units or dedicate certain features of the intended product or service to your backers.
  • Donation based crowdfunding – You give nothing back except your profound gratitude to your backers and the use of the money for the exact purpose for which you sourced for it.

Fundanenterprise.org is a donation based crowdfunding platform. You will not be required to pay back any monies that your backers give you.

However, to make your story more credible and authentic, and to further give your backer the assurance that you will actually use the money for the proposed enterprise, we advise that you promise rewards to your backers in the form of your products or services from your proposed enterprise. You can promise for instance, to give out a copy of your book (if the enterprise entails publication of a book) if the backer is donating up to N2,000 for instance (depending on your intended cover price for the book plus delivery costs). This may be your first level of reward. Your second level of reward on this same book publishing enterprise may be to promise to include the backer’s name in the acknowledgement page if he or she donates up to N100,000, and so on. You can choose to promise only one reward level.  PLEASE ENSURE THAT YOU FULFIL WHATEVER YOU ARE PROMISING AND IN GOOD TIME TOO!

4. Get professional help. The look of your crowdfunding page and how you continually communicate on the page is essential. You do not want to put up a sloppy page or content… You are creating a Public Relations campaign as much as a fundraising one. If you do not present your ideas professionally, how do you want people to take your business seriously or even buy from you eventually? You need to be able to communicate professionally.

You need well articulated, properly laid out/ structured content and a well told story; in writing, in pictures and/or in videos. This gives credibility to your story and allows the audience and backers to relate more to your story.  Our consultants and partners can help you draw up your business plan and your story in the best professional manner but you may have to pay them for this.

5. Attend our empowerment training: We run empowerment training series in collaboration with our affiliate consultants partners. You need to attend one of them (free of charge) or come to our offices for mentorship (free of charge) or have an online session/ interactive e-learning session in order to understand what it takes to run business and acquire some very useful business and entrepreneurial skills while at it. We will also walk through your business plan with you to determine if it is workable, viable, authentic and credible. Do not be intimidated, you can articulate and write your business plan by yourself. We will guide you through it too. Contact us by sending an email to support@fundanenterprise.org, and we will let you know how to go about this.

* Our Foundation is open to engaging more training and handholding partners /consultants to enable us adequately achieve our goals of supporting enterprises, helping businesses grow, creating jobs and ultimately developing the economy.

* For our prospective community members who already have the required funding but need mentorship, training and handholding as described in above, we are glad to help. We can always link you up with our training and handholding consultants/ partners.

6. Be sure you have a following. Before you jump into a crowdfunding campaign, you need to have a cadre of people who will recognize you as having legitimacy or expertise in an area. A social media presence with a lot of followers can do a lot to legitimize your product and make you legitimate in a crowdfunding space… At the end of the day, even with venture capitalists, 99% of investors or donors are investing in the person, not the business.”