Crowdfunding Is The Next Big Investing Trend

Over the last several years crowdfunding has become an increasingly popular option for both entrepreneurs and investors. According to Forbes, Drew Hendricks, the volume of global crowdfunding platforms skyrocketed.

Crowdfunding has already proven itself to be a successful alternative in acquiring or investing money. And it’s likely not going anywhere anytime soon. It will most likely continue to rapidly grow. In fact, crowdfunding is poised to become the next big investment trend. And here’s five reasons why:

  1. Convenience

Have you ever asked for money? It’s not exactly the highlight of your day. But that’s nothing compared to applying for a loan or meeting with potential investors. It’s one of the most nerve-racking experiences that entrepreneurs have to go through. But, that’s not the case with crowdfunding.

Compared to all of the paperwork and preparation needed for loans, setting a crowdfunding campaign is a breeze. Just select the right platform, put together a video and offer enticing rewards. While there’s still a need for something that’s important for the long-term, like a business plan, it’s extremely refreshing to only have to make your presentation and pitch just once.

Crowdfunding is also a great for both investors and entrepreneurs to discover each other. Instead of relying on traditional methods and investing options, crowdfunding provides a convenient and exciting way of obtaining an investment or finding a new venture to fund.

  1. Validates a Concept

Having an idea is one thing. Proving that the idea can make a profit is another thing. Whether you need to convince yourself or investors that there’s money made, crowdfunding provides a great opportunity to see where the market stands.

If you launch a successful crowdfunding campaign, it not only proves that there’s an interest in your idea, it also shows that people are willing to spend money on it. That’s a rather effective way in validating your concept.

 

  1. Reduces Risk

Because crowdfunding validates the market, both entrepreneurs and investors don’t have to worry about taking on as much risk. Instead of dumping your savings into a business venture that doesn’t have a sustainable market, you can test the water without much of an investment. In fact, even if your campaign isn’t successful the money that was given is returned to all donors.

Investor John Rampton who’s invested in several crowd funded campaigns says “Another way that crowdfunding reduces risk is by reducing the cost of inventory. Let’s say in the past a clothing company would have manufactured 1000 pairs of jeans but sold 700 pairs. They still had to purchase the 1000 pairs and basically just take the loss on the jeans that weren’t sold. With crowdfunding that same company knows ahead of time on how many pairs of jeans that need to be produced. Instead of wasting money on inventory that doesn’t sell, you only sell what’s been ordered.”

 

  1. Real-time Feedback

Throughout the course of a crowdfunding campaign there’s an opportunity to receive and review feedback and ideas. In the past, some questions or concerns weren’t approached during this early part of the stage. Now you can create polls or surveys to see what people enjoy or don’t like about your product. Best of all, this feedback can be reviewed in real-time. This can help you make the right adjustments faster than what it would have been in the past – which means getting your product to market as soon as possible.

However, the most important part about regarding feedback is that it builds a community. Think about that for a second. You’re able to build a following of loyal customers before the business has even launched. And you did this by engaging them and listening to their suggestions.

 

  1. A Great Marketing Tool

Besides introducing a product or service, a crowdfunding provides the chance to spread your brand’s message and goals to a wide audience. As you share your campaign across multiple social media channels, you’ll also spend time engaging with supporters, who will become loyal customers and advocates who will share your business with their connections.

Let’s also say that your campaign gets some traction. Publications love success stories. You have just secured some free PR. It doesn’t matter if it’s a local news station or newspaper or leading industry blog, that sort of coverage is an excellent way to spread brand awareness and attract supporters who previously weren’t aware of your business.

(photo credit old.suny.edu)

Your Business Name And You

Professional woman making a callWhat your business name says about you and how you can decide on a name that best fits you and the company you are trying to represent.

According to ecommerce-guide.com, you should resist the urge to come up with some hip, trendy nomenclature that says very little about your business. There should be some rational behind why a specific name is chosen.  High tech, forward thinking names are common in e-business. They also offer these guide lines for you to keep in mind when contemplating an inspiring company name.

  • The name you choose should somehow be an indicator of your services or products.
  • It should conjure up a positive image of the company.
  • Develop some acronyms that could be effective.
  • A serious business won’t be Continue reading

Why Is Crowdfunding Popular?

Business Competitor At Starting Position

Input2funding has a proven track record of launching successful business start-ups.

Why is Crowdfunding  popular?

People feel empowered when they are responsible for creating something new, regardless of whether they are the actual creator or just a contributor.  We all have an inherent desire to be part of something larger than ourselves and this is a major appeal that supports crowdfunding’s existence.
Via the internet, millions of people have access to a wide range of investment opportunities, and this visibility is further fueled through social media.
Compared to the legacy funding mechanisms, crowdfunding offers several key benefits:
·         Easy setup with few obstacles to launch your campaign
·         Entrepreneurs can market their product and fundraise simultaneously
·         Shorter lead time to raise funds (consider  1-2 months vs. 6-12 months)
·         Contributors become your advocates and help grow your customer base
Ultimately, crowdfunding provides businesses with the flexibility and confidence to stay true to their original venture with the support of their potential customers and contributors.

Women In Executive Positions Equal Success?

Three Businesswomen In Office Working On A DocumentIt has been said that women cannot succeed in executive positions without turning up the testosterone. Reality shows have backed this train of thought. For example, The Apprentice and Shark Tank show women making shrude and even calculated negotiations for businesses to claw their way to the front. It does not have or need to be this way.

Yes, executive suites in Fortune 500 companies are predominantly male. However, businessnewsweekly.com states, “Fifty-five percent of the analyzed companies had at least one female executive, and the proportion of female to male executives at these companies was 2 to 9, or 22 percent. In successful companies the median proportion of female executives was 7.1 percent, more than double the median (3.1 percent) in unsuccessful companies. The study also found that every 10 percent increase in female executives at the VP level yielded a 6 percent increase in the company’s odds of success,” It may be time to rethink the power of femininity in the executive offices.
We may ask, “ What makes a successful female executive?” Continue reading

Take Your Business In The Right Direction

african american businesswoman waving fistsAs a business owner or potential owner do you feel you have your business going in the right direction? What is the right direction? While a business may seemingly be financially on a sound path, the business itself could potentially be failing. Planning today will certainly determine the future. Take your business in the right direction by avoiding these probable pitfalls.

  1. Sign the check.

The majority of businesses generally have a bookkeeper or accountant on staff responsible for receiving the funds and paying the bills. Looking at a profit and loss statement once a month does not tell the whole story and should never be used as your only insight to the company funds. You should be the one signing the checks so you know exactly where the funds are going and can question payables you are unsure of.

  1. Blended Funds.

Your personal funds and business funds should be completely separated. If you have to make a personal loan to your company or vice versa it should be done in a professional manner. There should not be any reason why your company funds are paying your personal cable bill.

  1. Customer Service

Priority, priority, priority! Whether you offer a service or a product you must treat your customer with the Continue reading

The Campaign Approach

Three Businesswomen Meeting Around Table In Modern OfficeStarting or growing a business can be exciting yet challenging. From ideas running rampant through your head to making it a reality is a long highway. There is so much to do, so much to investigate. In essence, we all know the bottom line will be how we pay for it all. Start-up costs can catch us off guard as we forget the tiny details that eat up our budget and therefore have to find other ways to move forward.

Crowdfunding is a great alternative and has changed the way many business start-ups fund their projects. Crowdfunding has tripled in the last few years and entrepreneurs use this type of funding for proof of concept or early idea validation.

According to Forbes, the key to success, no matter where you seek funding, is Continue reading

Commitment Or Just A Phase

OH blank I2F JournalYou have pondered on your idea for a long time. You have taken several steps to get your business started. You feel like this is it, you can do this. Yes, you can! However, it requires commitment from the thought process to the forever. Let’s define commitment.

Commitment -the state or quality of being dedicated to a cause, activity, responsibility, obligation, duty, tie, liability, dedication, devotion, allegiance, loyalty,and faithfulness.

Do you still feel you have the commitment it requires to start, run, and excel as a business owner?
Great, now say “I am committed to making this business a success”

Your commitment cannot just be the use of the word, it must be an action. Continue reading