In the early days, starting a company and startup fundraising were virtually synonymous. Ideas thrive in the comfort of a theoretical creative space of the mind. However, if you want your company to grow, your ideas need to become a product. To make a product, you need to generate money. So how do you do that? Our article will show you how to kickstart your startup and maximize your investments.
Before the Startup Fundraising Begins
One of the biggest mistakes startups make is not taking the right precautions before fundraising.
Here are some early steps to follow to maximize your fundraising efforts:
1. Create A Funding Plan and Goals List
Make sure your funding plans are clearly stated in your business plan. A set plan and a list of goals will be your roadmap to growth, staying on track, and achieving your startup fundraising goals. Plus, investors want to see that you have a clear idea of where you want your business to go and how you plan to use your funding. Paying attention to these details early on is important to building trust with your potential investors and crowdfunding backers.
2. Research Your Investors and Backers
First, gather your list of ideal investors and crowdfunding backers. Then, make sure you refine that list. Compare the prospective investors and backers to fit your goals. Ask for referrals and build a network. Word of mouth and recommendations can work in your favor here. Take advantage of online communities like Crunchbase or Seedinvest to access investor information.
3. Perfect Your Pitch
Now that you have your plan outlined and you know who you are talking to, it’s time to prepare your pitch. The best rule of thumb is to keep it simple. Do not keep your investors waiting until the end to hear your point. There is no need to fluff it up. Investors care if you can confidently state your goals, explain your funding goals and prospective future.
What is Startup Fundraising?
Startup fundraising generates money through a series of investments. The important thing to realize about startup fundraising is that there are different strategies for each of these stages. These investments are referred to as Seed Round, Series A-B-C, and etc. The series continues until the company is able to sell or go public. At each of these levels, the company receives venture capital that is relevant to a particular stage.
Sounds easy enough on paper, but let’s break it down a little bit.
The Stages of Startup Fundraising
1. Seed Round
The Seed round occurs when a company has a concept that could become a viable product. The seed round provides a small amount of money to create a prototype or scale an already existing product.
2. Series A
With a viable product, the company looks to venture capitalists to help take the product (which as already gain some market traction) to local market. The funding will be particularly large at this stage. But in return, the investors will own a portion of the company. At this level, startups are usually refining their business model to find the most efficient way to take their product to market.
3. Series B
So, the startup has a product on the marketplace and a viable business plan for growth. At this level, the startup looks for increased funding to bring the product to a larger market.
4. Series C
At Series C, it is about accelerating the growth in Series B. Now, startups might move into international markets. They might also expand their product line to appeal to different platforms.
These startup fundraising rounds can go on for an undetermined amount of time. What is important to note about this process is that at each level a part of your company goes to your investors. At some point, there is not much left of the startup to give. This is where startups typically sell to bigger companies or go public.
To speed up the startup fundraising process, some startups look to crowdfunding websites. Many of these platforms assist with campaign creation, financial due diligence, investor outreach and more. Crowdfunding websties are a great way to expedite the funding process.
Here are some crowdfunding platforms to help jumpstart your startup fundraising.
Websites for Startup Crowdfunding
Crowdfunder is an equity-based crowdfunding platform. They deal primarily with entrepreneurs who sell shares of their business in return for funding. They also have a wide network of venture capitalists and Angel investors to help raise money from the Seed round and up. Crowdfunder has a variety of plans. Free at sign-up, $299/month for Starter plan, and $499/month for a Premium Plan.
This platform is geared towards more high-growth companies in their early stages. To join, they have quite a picky selection process. First, you need to have two or more team members, a viable prototype, and a proof of concept. If you make it through the screening process, then you have access to accredited and non-accredited investors. The biggest drawback with this platform is its high placement fee of 7.5% of all funded campaigns. Still, it seemes to be developing a positive reputation online and growing its investor base.
On the other hand, CrowdfundingBum is not as selective. They do not need you to pass any screening tests. They have built-in backers which increases your chances of raising the fund quickly. Furthermore, they also do not ask you to spend a lot of money to get your startup fundraiser started. The website does regularly charge an 8% fee on all funds raised in campaigns. However, the 5% platform fee is currently being waived. The remaining 3% is paid forward to another campaign or project of your choosing. This is done while simultaneously receiving similar donations from subsequent new members. They want to create a cycle of success built on the community giving back to each other. Professional entrepreneur or a novice, Crowdfundingbum welcomes all.
On paper, Startup fundraising looks easy. This is why many startups fail before even getting off the ground. They underestimate the process. With startup fundraising, it is important to start early, strategize, and follow a structured process.
If you have struggled to obtain funding before, be patient. Fundraising takes time and patience. Hopefully, our suggestions above can help you have a more efficient startup fundraising process.
We hope you stick around a while to find out more about all that Crowdfunding Bum has to offer. You will find ample reasons to choose us as your funding source.
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Bernardo Pereira instinctively knew that funding a Crowdfunding campaign shouldn’t be so difficult. This Crowdfunding Bum founder and sole owner is a visionary thinker who wanted to place the power of generosity in the hands of all those who choose to embrace it. Strategically, he developed the world’s first built-in backer mechanism within the platform to auto-fund campaigns. This website is a manifestation of his vision.