25 Aug Psychology and Crowdfunding: 6 Ways to Master the Art of Persuasion
Successful crowdfunding involves a lot more than clever marketing and strategically connecting with others on social media. It involves really trying to understand people and how they perceive not only your campaign, but the world around them.
Granted, this doesn’t mean you have to sit down with every potential donor and divulge intimate details about each other’s lives in order to feel closer; all it means is learning how to understand the psychology behind crowdfunding, particularly the art of persuasion.
6 Psychology Tips to Keep in Mind
Keep in mind that there is no “one-size-fits-all” method when it comes to fundraising. Tactics that work for one cause may not work very well at all for another. However, below are six general principles to keep in mind when it comes to running a successful crowdfunding campaign.
Eye for an Eye: Using Reciprocity
Nobody likes to feel like they “owe” someone anything, and when we give, we expect something in return. The concept of reciprocity can be loosely defined as the human tendency of giving something with the expectation that you will receive something in turn. In other words, this refers to an “eye for an eye” scenario, and you can utilize this technique in your crowdfunding in a variety of ways.
One is by getting behind other crowdfunding ventures. If you scratch their back, they might scratch yours. Another is by sending shout outs on social media to those who feel the effects of the “social gap” that arises when they feel obligated to return a favor (i.e., if you do give to other ventures and now they feel like they “owe” you; recognizing them creates a sense of connection and community).
Crowdfunding doesn’t have anything to do with exploiting others or manipulating them. It has to do with networking, and this concept of reciprocity can help you get closer to your goals.
Keep Them Coming: Commitment and Consistency
People tend to stick with an idea once that idea is set in place. This means that once you’ve broken the ice with a sponsor, continue to ask them for help; you’ll find that they will most likely continue to respond to your needs.
They may start with donating money, then follow with giving you social attention, and then end by sharing your campaign with their friends. People have an innate need to be consistent with past behaviors, so once you get them to commit, you can be fairly certain that you’ll have a pretty reliable source of support in your future endeavors.
Social Imitation: The Power of Example
We are more likely to do something if we see other people doing it first. If you stand on the corner and stare at the pavement with an engrossed look on your face, count the number of people who will eventually start imitating you.
You can apply this principle to crowdfunding by showing your backers. You can do this via videos, social media, or other platforms where other people will be able to see social proof of you campaign’s success. If they see other people supporting your cause and becoming successful in doing so, they are more likely to become interested in backing you themselves.
The Tendency to Obey: Using Authority
Heeding authority is a universal human tendency, but every audience sees different figures as authoritative. You need to figure out which ones so that you can have the appropriate people or sources back your cause.
For example, if your venture is backed by a notable magazine, expert, or organization your audience respects, they’re more likely to prick up their ears and listen to what you have to say. When you back up your crowdfunding campaign with the appropriate authorities, you cease to be just one more person blasting opinions on the Internet. Instead, you become an authority figure yourself.
Attractiveness: The “Face” of Your Brand
Every human being has a tendency to be persuaded by beauty and its various forms. Thus, carefully selecting the “face” of your brand or crowdfunding campaign can be an enormous asset to attracting donors and sponsors.
Feel free to pick the most photogenic person you have on your team, or spend good portions of time on some software polishing up an image that is eye-catching and attractive. This isn’t “shallow” insomuch as it’s smart business tactics. We all enjoy looking at things that are attractive–and there’s no shame in making your campaign one of those things.
Act Now or Miss Out: Scarcity
This is the “limited time only” mentality, based around the idea that scarcity makes people more interested in obtaining something. For instance, online hotel booking platforms might do this by sending you notifications of when someone else is about to book the room you were looking at only moments before.
The “scarcity” tactic makes the service seem rare and therefore special somehow; this is a powerful motivator that can prompt people to swift action. It’s important to study up on it so you can use it to your advantage in your crowdfunding.
Note that you don’t have to employ scare tactics or seem pushy. You can start small and test the waters with more subtle techniques; look at infomercials and filter ideas through a brand or strategy, then use them to gain sponsors and rack up financial support for your campaign.
Talking Strategy and Psychology With Crowdfunding Pros
Crowdfunding is a diverse field that provides many opportunities for growth. When you want to go beyond the usual tactics and master its more psychological aspects, consider hiring experts to assist you during the process. They will take your campaign to the next level by equipping you with the necessary skills and knowledge you need to succeed.