The stats don’t lie. According to Indiegogo “campaigns with a pitch video raise 4 times more funds than campaigns without one”, while Kickstarter found that “projects with videos succeeded at a rate of 50%, and projects without videos succeeded at a rate of 30%.”
When people visit a crowdfunding page, the video is the first thing they see. It’s the fastest way to find out about a project and it’s your best chance to capture the imagination of your audience.
To help you achieve your crowdfunding goals, we’ve come up with 6 tips to create a perfect pitch video that will excite your audience and drive contributions.
Do your research
Spend plenty of time watching other crowdfunding videos – see what grabs your attention, what makes you consider contributing to a campaign, and also what really turns you off! Look at campaigns that are similar to yours, take note of the video’s structure, as well as the messages and themes that worked well. These are the elements that you can replicate in your own video pitch. It’s also worth reviewing videos from unsuccessful campaigns and identifying common themes that may have resulted in a weak pitch video. By the time you come to creating your own video, you should have a really good idea of what separates the strong crowdfunding videos from the substandard ones.
Plan, plan, plan
As much as your passion should shine through, it’s vital to prepare what you are going to say in your video in advance. Once you’ve done your research, you can think about writing a script or drawing a storyboard. Here are a few things you should consider including when planning your pitch video:
- Start with a hook. The hook is a very simple phrase that grabs people right from the beginning. For example, the Who Gives a Crap Indiegogo campaign (see below) started their video off with the question: “What if every crap you took made a difference?” And from this they engaged the viewer within the first 10 seconds of their video. The best hooks grab the audience’s attention but are still absolutely relevant to your project.
- Explain your rewards – your video is the perfect opportunity to get people excited about what your supporters can get out of supporting you. Use your best rewards to grab the attention of your audience and encourage them to look further down the page.
- Finish with a clear call to action. The whole point of starting your crowdfunding campaign is to secure contributions or pledges from your audience – so don’t forget to mention this in your video! You’d be amazed by how many people either forget or deliberately don’t actually ask for contributions in their video. Words such as ‘we need your support’ and ‘please contribute now’ go a very long way. Try to make this the last statement of the video so that your viewers leave with it fresh in their minds.
Keep it short and sweet.
From our experience, we think between 2 and 3 minutes is ideal – this gives you plenty of time to explain your project while not asking people to give you too much of their time. However, there are a handful of successful campaigns that have used much longer videos. For example, the video for the Pono Music crowdfunding campaign was over 11 minutes long – yet they successfully received over $6m in pledges!
Show your audience a prototype or preview
One thing that backers will want to see is a prototype or preview of the product or idea that you are crowdfunding. This is the best way to give people a clear idea of what they are contributing to, as well as helping you to appear trustworthy and transparent.
Take the Coolest Cooler as an example – their prototype was the heart of the video. Their whole video told a story which was relatable to the viewer, while the prototype enabled people to really understand what the purpose of their product was. Likewise, if you are crowdfunding an album of your songs, it’s vital that you share a track you have recorded previously or even just a video of you singing.
Showing a prototype or preview in a video is the fastest and clearest way to explain the purpose of your campaign to your audience while also showing that you have nothing to hide from them.
Produce the highest quality video you can
Your video doesn’t necessarily have to be of a professional standard but you must make sure that both the audio and video are clear and to a standard that won’t turn people away. Think of it this way: if you came across a video of poor visual or audio quality, would you keep watching?
If possible, you should use good quality equipment, such as a camera, tripod, clip-in microphone etc. Test the audio levels before you record your video and be prepared to do multiple takes. Also, if you are using music in your video, make sure that it’s not too loud and doesn’t overpower your own voice!
Tell your story and be yourself!
When people contribute to a crowdfunding campaign, they’re not only interested in your project – they also want to know why this project is important to you. Tell people how you came up with the product, and show the journey from concept to creation. We find that there’s no better way to connect with people than by being honest and allowing people to understand the hard work and passion that has already gone into your project. So don’t hold back – tell people why you want your campaign to succeed and let your personality come out. This is your moment in the spotlight – show the world why this project matters to you!
Take a look at the ISSA Mikro baby toothbrush video pitch below. It explains what inspired the product and why it is so special – it even informs the viewer of the design process over time. It’s also brilliant at showing how the product stands out and is better than its competitors!
We hope these six tips will help you to film a brilliant crowdfunding video. So get out there, be creative and don’t forget to show your passion for your project!
One last tip: ensure that your video is also available on Youtube and other social media, as this will open up your campaign to an even wider audience. You can even provide a direct link to your campaign so that social media viewers can donate quickly and easily.