CFI's CEO, Douglas E. Castle, Explains Why The Vast Majority Of Crowdfunding Projects Failed in 2012; And How To Succeed.

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The CEO of CrowdFunding Incubator, LLC (CFI), Douglas E. Castle believes that most crowdfunding project sponsors searching for capital have to be highly proactive in terms of networking and social media in order to start the flow of contributions into their projects, once those projects are put up on some crowdfunding website. The winners, i.e., those project sponsors who attain their capitalization targets, are more likely great promoters than ingenious innovators or visionaries; “Having a great project just simply isn’t enough anymore,” says Castle.

Despite all the whoopla surrounding crowdfunding, its a little known fact that 70% of the projects started in 2012 failed to meet their capitalization objectives. “If you are thinking about crowdfunding your project, business, innovation, application, cause, dream or enterprise, you've probably invested a fair amount of sweat equity in getting yourself to the point of filling out a submission form on a crowdfunding website,” says Douglas E. Castle, CEO of CrowdFunding Incubator LLC. (CFI) “But if you think that the contributions will come flowing in because you’ve got a brilliant idea for a product or service and a wonderful mission for all of Humankind, you're 100% wrong.”

Some of the brightest and best business ventures fail miserably at crowdfunding because the principals spent far too much time in the lab, the incubator or in the basement putting together wonderful business plans with glowing summaries while neglecting to build social networks of contacts who will want become possible contributors once they’re up on a crowdfunding medium, portal or website.

Even some of the most lackluster projects bring in tremendous contributions because the principals have consistently invested some of their time building up social networks, mailing lists, and being aggressively active in the social media.

The screaming secret that most entrepreneurs don’t seem to see is that the public-at-large won’t jump in contributing money until the project sponsors themselves have gotten members of their social and business networks to contribute. The secret nucleus of virtually all successful capitalization campaigns is a core of dedicated family, friends, colleagues and social media contacts who make contributions at the very start of the project to show website activity and reinforce the viability of the project and its principals’ integrity. Surrounding this nucleus is a secondary layer of contributors who come through the referred friends, colleagues and acquaintances of the core group.

Your ability to build a large following and to then ‘work’ that following constantly and aggressively is the largest determinant of your success. A realistic project promoter is an persistent but polite evangelist for the project. In fact, the promoter’s efforts, especially prior the venture launch and in the first few weeks immediately following the launch generally will determine whether the projects stated money-raising goal will be achieved.

If you really want that capital, then the last mile of the journey is in working every moment of every day, in every possible way and with unwavering consistency in promoting your pavilion of the crowdfunding website, portal or platform that is showing you and your project off.

Castle’s Company (web address offers a free, downloadable guidebook to current and prospective project promoters which can be accessed at The 3 Secrets Of Successful Crowdfunding or by contacting the company.

“Project sponsors have to realize,” Castle says, “that they are the principal promoters of their own projects, and that the winners are those project sponsors who take a proactive role in getting those contributors to participate. A website, even with a million views a day, won’t make a project that’s left sitting there into a cash cow - the genius is in promoting your position on a crowdfunding website, just as much as it is in being an entrepreneurial innovator. Contributors are followers, and not leaders - the team behind the project, whatever it is, has to lead believers to their exhibit on that website.”

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Richard Pressman
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