If you’re thinking of starting a crowdfunding campaign, you need a video. Besides being a fun way to demonstrate / show off your business / idea, campaigns with videos get waaaaay more engagement than campaigns without videos.
An engaging, informative, and persuasive video highlighting what makes your business worth investing in can seem like a daunting undertaking. A knee-jerk reaction is to create an advertisement reminiscent of late night TV. Don’t get me wrong – if done well, these videos can go viral and increase engagement, but the former is not indicative of the latter, i.e. just because a lot of people watch your video does not mean they’ll contribute to your campaign, etc. But by and large, this route should be avoided because it’s difficult to provide people with the opportunity to emotionally attach to your business / idea.
Note: A well-crafted video does not necessarily mean high production value and general fanciness. It means creating a video that exemplifies your idea, business, or product(s) in a way that connects with people.
Notice how, after a minuscule amount of flash in the beginning, this pitch becomes very personal. By setting the camera up in what looks like their living room, not to mention holding their young child, the pitch appeals to viewers’ emotions.
The target audience is really anyone who might want tasty food fast, since that’s the reputation of food trucks. And their menu definitely sounds tasty.
They have proof of market demand (through some pretty hilarious tweets displaying people’s enthusiasm).
It finishes with a call to action, but note the language: They invite people to donate and be a part of something bigger. Yes, that’s a little cliché, but clichés are so because at their cores they hold truths. If their project is funded, they’ll serve many more people than those who donate to the project.
Also worthy of note: See the small banner in the upper left corner that says “Thank You For Your Support!”? This can be an effective tactic because it suggests that the viewer already has supported, or will certainly support, the project. It not a plea for support, e.g. “Please Donate”, which can come across as desperate.
Here’s a video with a little higher production value that approaches the need for funding from a slightly different angle.
From the start, you know who they are and the position they’re in; they appeal directly to the viewer through a webcam, making the experience somewhat reminiscent of a Skype conversation. They’re looking for funding, so not hiring a videographer makes sense. And really, the whole video could be done in this format with several still of wrapped cars thrown in.
Who’s their target audience? Anyone, really, since most of us own cars. However, doesn’t this seem to appeal more toward men?
Notice that they invite each viewer to actively be a part their expansion. Most of us love knowing we’re valuable, and this video tells each viewer that they’re integral to the success of this business.
The call to action is straightforward and offers suggestions for those who may not be interested or able to contribute to the product – share it with friends who might be.
Note: There could be many reasons this campaign did not reach its funding goal. There’s more to a successful campaign than just a video.
This pitch starts out showing the problem the product sets out to solve: Large key rings are inefficient, clunky, loud, and a general pain.
Then the solution is shown, which looks like a Swiss Army knife but for keys. Since the shape and function is the same as perhaps the most widely known pocket knife, it’s easy to relate to the product and understand how it works.
Showing the features and durability of the product displays how well-made it is. And, I mean, the thing can be taken apart and put together with a penny, and is smaller than a pack of spearmint. See why they’d what to show features like that?
Testimonials are great, but be careful they don’t come off as forced or corny. If you don’t have testimonials, simply show the practical applications of your product in a variety of circumstances.
So where’s the call to action? There really isn’t one. Instead, the creator says he’s got everything lined up for this product to go into production, he just need a little help. Instead of directly asking, he has faith that people who watch the video will want to donate because what he’s creating is interesting and practical.
Whether you’ve got a pro videographer, a smartphone, or a webcam, it’s entirely possible to create a video that captures the essence of your business. The more thought you put into crafting the pitch, the less you’ll have to lean on graphic designers, editing, and other things to spice it up. Good luck crafting your video!
Do you have additional advice for creating an awesome video? Share in the comments!
Online Marketing Coordinator. When he's not writing about business, he's hiking the wee hills of Los Angeles and writing creative nonfiction, for which he's won a Dominic J. Bazzannella Award. Connect with him via Twitter, Google+, and Facebook.