How Kathy Leskow of Confetti Sweets leveraged the crowd to get the most out of their crowdfunding campaign.
This is the fifth article in Leveraging the Crowd Crowdfunding Series If you haven’t read the previous articles, click here to start at the beginning and expand your arsenal of tips and tricks for crowdfunding.
Confetti Sweets started from very humble beginnings. Kathy Leskow’s baked cookies filled her home with enticing smells as she whipped up her inventory for farmers markets in Edmonton and surrounding area. Her treats were so popular Leskow was able to open up a permanent storefront location in 2014, and a second one only a year later. By the time she started her crowdfunding campaign in October of 2016 with a goal of $20,000, she was ready to tackle opening a third location. Once all was said and done, Leskow raised a little over $30,000, giving her and her team ample funds to open up the new Confetti Sweets location in Edmonton’s West End.
We had the opportunity to chat with Leskow about what she thinks aspiring entrepreneurs and crowdfunders need to keep in mind when running a campaign. Her advice?
Keep it simple
With a wealth of wishes and ideas at your fingertips, it can be tempting to try to put out every idea at once. Leskow recommends slowing down and taking things one step at a time. “Come up with a few great ideas and run with them,” she advises. “I found that we underestimated the time it would take to create and manage a successful campaign, so don’t make it too complicated.” The more ideas you try to implement at once, the harder it can become to manage. Don’t overwhelm yourself right at the beginning, and give yourself the time and space to go all out with the ideas you do implement.
Rewards are your chance to get creative with your campaign! Take some time to brainstorm and flesh out a few fun and exciting ideas for rewards that will convince potential backers to put their money where their mouth is. “Think of ideas that people would love to pitch in money to receive,” says Leskow. And that excitement doesn’t only have to be built through the uniqueness of the reward; you can also use rewards with limited editions or runs to create that buzz. “We did a ‘Cookie of the Month Club’ that was only offered through our campaign. It was a fun, fresh idea and it was exclusive, so a lot of consumers got really got excited about it.”
Never underestimate the power of social media
Social media has quickly become one of the biggest advertising platforms in the last decade. Creating a strong social media presence and prioritizing your following can give your campaign - and business - a leg up. “The people who follow you are your biggest supporters. You want them to know about your campaign and any new rewards or deals first as they’ll be crucial to helping you spread the word at a faster pace,” help Leskow advises. In fact, you should aim to have everything you post online be as superior in quality and approach as possible to reflect your high goals. This is especially true when it comes to your campaign introduction video, as it is the first thing representation of you and your brand consumers see when they are looking at your campaign. “I wish that we had spent the money to create a better video explaining our story the first try,” Leskow laments. “That video is vital in telling the story of your company and what you need the funding for. Don’t underestimate the power of your story. Invest in your campaign video, because ultimately you’re investing in yourself!”
But for Leskow, one of the best investments she’s ever made was in the team she built around her. “My staff are the most near and dear to my heart,” she gushes. “Surrounding myself with an amazing team has inspired me to be a better leader and to push my business to new heights.”
“At a certain point in growing your business, you need help. You can’t do it all alone. I can’t express enough the importance of building a team you trust and can rely on.”
Interested in supporting a local entrepreneur and getting your hands on some delicious cookies? Check out Confetti Sweets’ online store, and learn more about Leskow’s campaign at her archived campaign page.
Looking for more tips on how to crush your own crowdfunding campaign?
Check out our other articles about crowdfunding and accessing capital, alongside the other articles in our Leveraging the Crowd series with our crowdfunding role models.