Crowd Funding Lessons

On April 25th, Our 45 day crowd funding campaign came to a close. For those of you who saw the Indiegogo website you will probably notice that we did not meet our ambitious goal of $50,000. Ambition… oh yeah! It was probably too much to ask for, however, we felt we were offering some really great perks. Alas, the campaign ended with a small amount of contributions which we are very thankful and happy to have the support.

Here is a list of some of our observations:

  1. Ask for no more than $5000. If we get more then great. It does looks better when the percentage of contributions is in the double digits.
  2. We thought that a 50% discount on kitchen rental time would be a big incentive for food businesses. I guess food businesses wanted more security to know that there will be a kitchen to use. We understand. If we build it, you will come, but not anytime sooner.
  3. Our only currency for the perks was kitchen time. The foodie perks were too disconnected with regards to what our main business is. Are they making food? Are they selling equipment?
  4. We realize that crowd funding really works when you have a sweet product to hawk. People like unique things in their hands. Kitchen time is difficult to hold on to with your fingers.
  5. The real success was the publicity and promotion we received for the concept. This is fairly new in Ottawa, so it took time for it to really sink in what we are really doing. More than 600 people visited the campaign website.

2 thoughts on “Crowd Funding Lessons

  1. There is a level of comfort required with Crowd funding too, particularly when it comes to the “type” of funding you are asking for, fixed or flexible. I came ever so close to pulling the trigger on the 50 hours, but I admit the idea that I could buy it with no guarantee it would ever happen was a bit scary. Perhaps it is just perception, but had you had a lower target and aimed for fixed funding i.e. reach your goal and you get your money and I get my goodies plus the warm fuzziness that come from helping a local business get on it’s feet, don’t reach your goal and nobody gets anything. All that to say, I personally am more prone to fund a fixed goal project (a quick side note on a fixed goal with a more attainable target, there is nothing that stops you from adding stretch goals and additional perks once you’ve reached your 1st goal).
    Having said all that, I am glad you are on track to get this kitchen up and running. I spent part of the weekend in Hamilton with some friends making great use of the Roux Commissary and I agree, Ottawa needs you!

    1. Thanks for your feedback. Like I mentioned in the post, we learned a lot about crowd funding and the nuances it needs for success. Our goal was ambitious, and perhaps we needed to slowly test the waters. However, I personally felt empowered by all the money that other projects were raising on Indiegogo, that perhaps I was a little starstruck.

      If you are interested in using our kitchen, we are offering a Letter of Intent to potential clients that will give you seniority status once we are operational. No cash in advance. Please email me at info(at)cauldronkitchen.ca for more details.

      Regards,

      David

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