Crowdsourced funding is a mainstay among startups, but there’s a subtle art to it–and by its nature it’s never a sure thing.
A company called iHear recently completed a very successful crowdsourcing effort; president Adnan Shenib wrote that the company’s “Indiegogo campaign…resulted in achieving more than 3 times our initial goal” thanks, at least in part, to the “successful placement of key articles and interviews.”
We spoke to Jonathan Abramson, president and founder of iHear AOR bluetone Marketing & Public Relations, to learn more.
Abramson writes that the goal of the campaign was “making the PR and Marketing tangible to both the techie consumer and non-techie.”
bluetone did this by focusing on “the problem of expensive hearing aids” and positioning the client’s product as a solution to that problem in several distinct ways.
As Abramson puts it:
“We pitched the story as, not only as a medical device/tech angle, but as a consumer product with a real solution to hearing loss.”
In other words, they followed media coach Bill McGowan’s advice in framing the product launch not as a story unto itself but as a way for consumers to resolve a longstanding problem. From our April interview:
“You’ll never go wrong in highlighting the pipeline between your company and your customer and how it influences the decisions you make.”
A quick review of the placements in the case study clarifies:
- A Gizmag post focuses on the connectivity of the devices in reducing costs
- A TechCrunch story highlights the personalization angle
- Finally, a piece on the Ecopreneurist blog covers the company’s TOMs-like promise to offer “a free unit to an economically disadvantaged individual for every hearing device ordered” through the Indiegogo campaign
So each pitch and subsequent story shed light on another aspect of the product–and another specific consumer problem that it could solve.
How does this case compare to other crowdsourcing campaigns?